“America’s Largest Small Town Independence Celebration” has grown to become a week-long extravaganza of patriotism.
The festivities begin Wednesday, June 27 at 6 p.m. with the Unity in the Community Rally on the lawn of the Jackson County Courthouse. The event, organized by Victory Church, includes games and other family activities.
Constellium Rolled Products is sponsoring a bicycle parade at 7 p.m. Registration begins at 6 p.m. This event is for youngsters of all ages and will take place on the sidewalks around the courthouse.
On Thursday, June 28, the Kanawha Kordsman, a celebrated barbershop harmony group, will be performing at the gazebo. The free concert begins at 8 p.m.
Friday, June 29, marks the return of the Charleston Metro Bands on the courthouse lawn. The concert, with patriotic marches, show tunes and movie hits, starts at 8 p.m.
Saturday, June 30 will be “TransCanada Night.” The evening entertainment, featuring Dave & Daphne and Rick K & The Allnighters, is being sponsored by TransCanada. Comic Jacob Hall also entertains on the I-77 Auto Group Stage.
That afternoon, see the documentary “The Last Gallows: John Morgan’s Farewell” at 2 p.m. in the Alpine Theatre.
Sunday, July 1 beginning at 6 p.m., the U Turn Concert features contemporary Christian music on stage. Grammy-award winner Zach Williams is this year’s headliner.
“Gallows” is on the Alpine screen again at 2 p.m.
Monday, July 2, is “Constellium Night.” Jordan Ford is the 6 p.m. opening act for Phil Dirt & The Dozers. Comedian Bil Lepp will entertain before the Dozers return as Surf’s Up with tunes from The Beach Boys.
The morning of Tuesday, July 3 includes a courthouse dedication for the 2nd Lt. Clarence Dragoo Memorial Bridge on North Church Street. The Sandyville man had been lost at sea near the coast of Italy during World War II.
At 6 p.m., America’s first president, George Washington, is portrayed in the historic Alpine Theatre. At 7 p.m., the Class Act, a reunion for Ripley High grads and friends, is on the courthouse lawn.
Gambill Amusements carnival, benefitting the Ripley Volunteer Fire Department, is on the Municipal Parking Lot through July 7.
Wednesday, July 4, the festivities get underway at 9 a.m. with the Little Patriots Hour with Batman, Captain America, and Wonder Woman on hand to greet little ones.
Opening ceremonies are at 10 a.m. with the Appalachian Gold Drum & Bugle Corps performing. At 11 a.m., the choral group, WV Kids First will sing.
At 11:30 a.m., the Firecracker 2-Mile Race begins. At noon, the Sheetz Grand Parade proceeds from Ripley High to West Ripley. Performances by Corey Hager and Kurt & Kami begin at 2 p.m. At 4 p.m., the Ladies for Liberty perform their tribute to The Andrews Sisters.
At 6 p.m., the Parrots of the Caribbean are on stage with Jimmy Buffet hits.
Elvis tribute artist Dwight Icenhower is on the I-77 Auto Group Stage at 8 p.m. The evening’s entertainment is sponsored by the Ferrell family.
The celebration concludes with a fabulous fireworks show at 10 p.m.