It's time for fireworks, powdered wigs and the best of summer

by: NEWS-TIMES FILE PHOTO - The Forest Grove Firefighters Association will put on a fireworks show sure to be a blast. Staying put for the Fourth of July? Options abound right here in western Washington County. Break out the (legal) fireworks, barbecues, watermelon and little American flags — and head to a local celebration of the nation.

There will be a family-friendly fireworks show and celebration at Tom McCall Upper Elementary School, 1341 Pacific Ave. in Forest Grove. Live music by local singer/songwriter Josh Smith will start at 7 p.m., and a fireworks show provided by the Forest Grove Firefighters Association will follow on the field at 9:30 p.m. Admission is free, but a $5 donation is suggested to help fund this and future fireworks shows.

No alcohol or personal fireworks are allowed. This event is sponsored by the Forest Grove Firefighters Association and the Forest Grove/Cornelius Chamber of Commerce.

Those needing to prep for a day of fun can stop off at the Forest Grove Senior & Community Center from 7 to 9 a.m. for breakfast.

Take a break from the barbecue and head to Plum Hill Vineyards, 6505 S.W. Old Highway 47, which will offer wine tasting and free watermelon.

McMenamins Grand Lodge will host singer/songwriter McDougall from 7 to 9:30 p.m. “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off” will screen outside at dusk. Both activities are free.

Those who love parades — and really, who doesn’t with all that flying candy, cars strung with crepe paper and public figures prancing through the streets — can make a day of it.

Catch the Hillsboro Rotary Club’s annual Fourth of July parade as it winds its way through downtown streets led by Grand Marshal Dick Stenson, retired Tuality Healthcare CEO.

The parade kicks off with the national anthem at 10 a.m. Nearly 130 entries will start the procession at the intersection of Third Avenue and Grant Street. They’ll then turn on Second Avenue and head toward Main Street, and from there go on to Cornell Road. by: NEWS-TIMES FILE PHOTO - Live music is always popular at Forest Groves Fourth of July celebration. This year Josh Smith will perform.

Fuel up for the packed day at the Hillsboro Kiwanis Club’s fundraiser pancake breakfast at the First Congregational Church on Fourth Avenue and Main Street from 6 to 10 a.m.

Catch two more parades later in the day — at 2 p.m. in downtown North Plains and at 6 p.m. in Vernonia. Vernonia will also host a concert at 7:30 p.m. and a fireworks show at dusk.

In honor of John Adams, who once reportedly said Independence Day “ought to be celebrated by pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other,” North Plains will also be hosting an old-fashioned Independence Day celebration. Don that powdered wig and get ready for 18th century competitions.

From 9 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., there will be a car show, a parade, live music, food and — finally — a fireworks grand finale.

Registration for the “Cruisin’ Through Time” car show starts at 8 a.m. The show is expected to draw more than 100 cars — from muscle cars to projects to classics.

This year, the celebration will include 13 interactive colonial stations that will demonstrate skills used in the 17th century, such as archery, book binding and tying maritime knots. Home Depot staff members are going to set up a woodworking station where kids can build their own toolboxes.

Participants who grab a “passport” and collect all 13 stamps will receive a prize at the “Mercantile Store.” These stations will open at 10 a.m.

Other activities include traditional favorites like potato sack and three-legged races, hoop and stick, and buggy races. Kids can also play games like battledore and shuttlecock, nine pins or horseshoes. A bounce house will be set up next to the face painting.

After the parade, the North Plains Senior Center will serve a barbecued steak dinner at 4:30 p.m. to fundraise for programs such as Meals on Wheels.

Blackbird, a favorite local band, will play The Beatles songs and other music to wind up the evening on Commercial Street.

The Grand Illuminations Fireworks show launched from the Nature’s Needs facility will begin at 10 p.m.

Patriotic quilts handcrafted by the Westside Quilters Guild will also be raffled off during the festivities. Raffle tickets are available for purchase at the North Plains Library through July 3 and downtown at the celebration July 4.

The Banks Sunset Speedway will be hosting a Fourth of July celebration as well. They’ll have their usual full schedule of races and a fireworks show at 10 p.m.

Tuality Healthcare is organizing a C.A.T. Walk & Fun Run to fundraiser for cancer research in downtown Hillsboro. There will be a Kids’s Dash, timed 5K walk/run, and a health fair.

Registration starts at 6:30 a.m. and the first run is at 7:30 a.m. Learn more at or 503-681-1170.

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