So there’s some good news and some bad news about Fourth of July festivities this year. While there don’t seem to be too many local events taking place on the actual day, including the long-standing Picnic in the Park, (the bad news), there are plenty of activities during the long weekend leading up to the patriotic holiday.
That should be good news for anyone interested in baseball, fireworks, live music, cultural and artisan entertainment, a road race and the camaraderie that naturally accompanies family and friends gatherings.
Friday, July 1
First up is the Old Hippies from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday in Jackson Square (between Jackson and Center streets, Batavia. You should know the drill by now: bring a lawn chair, relax and enjoy. Across town will be a Muckdogs game at 7:05 p.m. at Dwyer Stadium. In addition to swing-batter-swing, there will be fireworks following the game.
Or how about “Get(ting) the Led Out” at Batavia Downs Gaming, where a Led Zeppelin tribute band takes the stage at 5 p.m. trackside. Click here for tickets
Josh Groban will be taking the stage at 7 p.m. at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, 9993 Alleghany Road (Route 77). For tickets, go here
Restaurants are also planning to provide some live music for patrons, including the Red Osier on Route 5 in Stafford, and Center Street Smokehouse on Center Street in Batavia.
Saturday, July 2
From 6:30 to 10 p.m., the Sinner Band will be at Jam at the Ridge, 8101 Conlon Road, Le Roy. Click here for tickets
Saturday will also bring the family fun all day and night long with the Batavia Ramble Explore Arts & Music Fest downtown in Jackson Square. Live bands, cultural dances, hands-on artist crafts, and more will run from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. For more details, see prior coverage here
Big Time Rush Forever Tour is set for 8 p.m. at Darien Lake Amphitheater at Six Flags Darien Lake Theme Park. For tickets, go here
Public Water Supply will have the music flowing from 8:30 to 11 p.m. at Cherry Hill Campground, 1516 Sumner Rd Darien Center. For more information, go to https://www.facebook.com/CherryHillCamp/
Sunday, July 3
Sunday will feature another Muckdogs home game at 7:05 p.m. at Dwyer Stadium, complemented by a nightcap of fireworks. For more information or tickets, go to Muckdogs.
Backstreet Boys: DNA World Tour is slated for 7:30 p.m. at Darien Lake Amphitheater. Click here for tickets
Monday, July 4
Holiday? What holiday? Lace-up your sneakers for a little early morning exercise before firing up the grill and enjoying picnic treats. You’ve got a week to prepare for the annual Kiwanis Club Independence Day 5K, set for 9 a.m. July 4 at Centennial Park.
The annual fundraiser is back on the road this year, after a temporary pandemic virtual option, says club member Dave Chua. For those runners not willing or able to take on the morning 3-mile jaunt, there will be a virtual option again this year, Chua said.
Runners will be helping Kiwanis Club raise money for the Autism Nature Trail and Batavia City School District Foundation.
As for no Picnic in the Park, Chua didn’t think that would impact the number of participants in the 5K, especially since the event has always wrapped up before the picnic festivities began anyway. It will mean, however, the rental and expense of port-a-potties. Participants have previously been able to use the ones already put in place for the picnic, he said.
This year’s race is going with a new timing company, Spirit Timing, which seems to be well-organized, he said. As part of that change will be fewer paper registrations versus online. There will also be a phone app to register that way ahead of time or while standing in line that morning as a day-of registrant.
Those that do register ahead of time are pretty much guaranteed a T-shirt with the official race logo, and all runners will get a bib with the timing chip on race day. Fees are $25 for each of the July 4 and virtual races.
Packet pick-up (and pre-registration) will be at 5 p.m. Sunday, July 3 at Batavia’s Original, 500 East Main St., Batavia. For more information, go to Batavia Kiwanis 5K
With all of the construction and a one-way Park Road along Batavia Downs Gaming, there won’t be any fireworks at the site this year, marketing director Ryan Hasenauer said. He recommends checking out the Friday concert as part of the Rockin' the Downs series, above.
Godfrey’s Pond is hosting a fun, members-only parade on July 4, complete with decorated bikes and golf carts. A step out of the county will find Genesee Country Village & Museum with a good old-fashioned Independence Day celebration from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in Mumford. For more information, go here.