Maplewood's annual Fourth of July celebration is a full day of events organized by the wonderful folks who make up the July 4th Committee of the Maplewood Civic Association.
If you were wondering about the history of this event, here is some background, courtesy of a press release from the committee:
July Fourth in Maplewood, over a century ago, was celebrated with a town-wide picnic, a keynote speaker (usually a politician), athletic contests and barbecues. Citizens, generally in groupings by neighborhood, made their way to the picnic grounds. Informal processions gradually turned into elaborate parades with costumes and bands, becoming fierce (and expensive) competitions between neighborhoods. The July Fourth Committee was formed to unite the township activities. Eventually the Maplewood Civic Association was organized, encompassing the Committee and dedicated to a tradition of family-oriented July Fourth celebrations.
A $10 tag per person gets you entree to the entire day of activities, including the Circus. Tags are available at the Town Hall Clerk’s Office, the Maplewood Memorial Libraries (both Main and Hilton branches), the Recreation Dept. at Town Hall and DeHart Park. Tags also will be for sale on July 4th in Memorial Park and at Evening Event Entrance Gates.
To sign up to get involved, download the PDF form attached to this article. For more information about volunteering, contact Howard Gilman at (973) 477-7687 or email@example.com.
Here is the schedule of events:
8:00 a.m. Opening Ceremonies at Ricalton Square
8:15 a.m. Parade steps off from Ricalton Park with everything you can push, pedal or pull; decorated red, white & blue; all ages.
9:00 a.m. Kids’ Dashes & Relays in athletic field opposite Town Hall
9:00 to 9:40 a.m. 4th of July 5K Run, Start & Finish on Oakview Avenue near Field House, (This requires a separate registration and fee: firstname.lastname@example.org. Organized by CHS Cross-Country Team parents and faculty)
9:00 a.m. CHS Robotics Club students display & demonstrate at Skate House
10:00 a.m. Circle Frame Kids’ Art Project downhill from RR station: ; sponsors: Memorial Post 10120 VFW & 1978 Arts Center; with story-theater by the Strollers
11:00 a.m. Ice Cream Eating Contests in picnic area next to tennis courts, sponsored and presented by Maplewood Rotary
11:00 a.m. Tennis Contests at Civic House tennis courts: fastest serve and most accurate serve; presented by Maplewood Recreation Tennis Program
11:30 a.m. Baking Contest in Town Hall; all ages. Judging directed by Janet Crane. Baking Contest entries need to be at Town Hall between 9 – 9:30 a.m.
12:00 noon Town Hall Murals in Town Hall: Durand-Hedden House volunteers will talk about the history of Maplewood through its murals.
12 to 3:00 p.m. Adult Softball in Athletic field opposite Town Hall
12:00 noon Kids’ Percussion Forest downhill from RR station, sponsored and presented by Jamie Ross
12:00 noon Pet Awards Show in front of Main Library: All Types, All Sizes! Organized and Presented by New Jersey Animal Coalition
Note that $10 per person tag is required for admission to the Circus and to concert/fireworks spectator area.
1:00 p.m. & 3:30 p.m. & 6:00 p.m. Zerbini Family Circus under the Big Top! Rain or Shine! 1st Come, 1st Served! No Reserved Seats! Seating Is Limited so line up early!
4:00 p.m. Live music begins on lawn opposite Town Hall; performances until fireworks. Picnic until fireworks: Ice cream vendor; Burgers, hotdogs, sodas at Maplewood BSA troop 5 concession. [Alcoholic beverages are not permitted in Maplewood parks.]
9:00 p.m. Fireworks — Come early! Times approximate. Parental discretion advised for small children and pets; consider viewing from a distance. Rain Date: July 5. (Circus and indoor events will be July 4, rain or shine).
MAPLEWOOD VILLAGE: Able Baker, Maplewood Stationery, No. 165, Scrivener’s, Strawberry Fields, Village Wine Shop, Words Bookstore
SPRINGFIELD AVENUE: Edo’s Quality Cakes, HLS Juice Bar & Grill, Park Wood Diner
Registration is required for Bikes Etc. Parade and Dashes & Relay Races. Forms are available at Memorial and Hilton Libraries, Town Hall, online at Board of Education school websites (“Digital Backpack Flyers”) and on Facebook "Maplewood 4th of July " and at www.maplewoodonline.com/cg/july4/