An American Legion color guard marches in the Fourth of July parade on Tuesday, July 4, 2017 in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Ben Boettger/Peninsula Clarion)
                                An American Legion color guard marches in the Fourth of July parade on Tuesday, July 4, 2017 in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Ben Boettger/Peninsula Clarion, file)

An American Legion color guard marches in the Fourth of July parade on Tuesday, July 4, 2017 in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Ben Boettger/Peninsula Clarion) An American Legion color guard marches in the Fourth of July parade on Tuesday, July 4, 2017 in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Ben Boettger/Peninsula Clarion, file)

Looking for something to do on the Fourth of July? Here are some of the local celebrations

The United States celebrates its 242nd birthday on Wednesday. There are plenty of ways to celebrate it on the central Kenai Peninsula, from parades to farm tours to stock car races. Here are some of the events happening on the Fourth of July this year.

Kenai

The annual Fourth of July parade begins at 11 a.m. and will last between an hour and an hour a half. Starting at Fidalgo Avenue, the parade will take a left on Willow Street, a right on Kenai Spur Highway and then a right on Main Street Loop. Afterward, the Midway festivities move to the Kenai Park Strip where there will be live music from Troubadour North, a beer garden featuring Kassik’s Brewery beer, a children’s carnival, local art and food vendors and a bounce house, a feature the Fourth of July festivities haven’t had in about six years.

For the 35th year in a row, the Kenai Senior Connection, the fundraising organization for the Kenai Senior Center, will sell strawberry rhubarb and apple pie, hot dogs and drinks at the festival.

The Hometown Heroes, a festival mainstay, will be back again, Johna Beech, president and COO of the Kenai Chamber of Commerce, said.

“It’s our way of acknowledging any locals that served in the military,” Beech said.

What’s more American than baseball? The Peninsula Oilers will be playing the Mat-Su Miners in their Fourth of July game. The Oilers will be walking in the parade before the game at 7 p.m. at the field at 103 S. Tinker Lane, Kenai. Admission will be free.

Twin City Raceway-Circle Track Division will be hosting the Stock Car Filthy Fifty. The 50 lap race starts at 6 p.m. and runs until 9 p.m. at 7075 Shotgun Road, Kenai. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for children, students, and seniors. Free for children seven and under and military.

The weekly farm tour and campfire devotional at Diamond M Ranch are for children of all ages. Starting at the farm’s office, the guided tour of the original homestead and farm begins with chances to see the sheep, llamas, and calves up close and personal. The tour is followed by a campfire social and devotional. The tour begins at 6:45 p.m. and the campfire devotional at 8 p.m. at Diamond M Ranch, 48500 Diamond M Ranch Road, Kenai. The tour is free for guests of the resort and is $5 for the public.

Soldotna

The Soldotna Wednesday Market will hold its weekly event with art and food vendors from around the peninsula. There will be live music from Mike Morgan, The Lack Family, and Greg Crawford. The Cupiit Yurartet Drummers and Dancers will also be performing. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Soldotna Creek Park and is free and for all ages.

Anchorage folk-rock band Blackwater Railroad Company will be performing for the July 4 Music in the Park series from 6 to 9 p.m. at Soldotna Creek Park. The event is free and for all ages.

Reach Victoria Petersen at vpetersen@peninsulaclarion.com.

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