Parade down Broad Street |

Parade down Broad Street

Yes, the parade in Nevada City is on. It starts 11 a.m. Friday at the top of Broad Street. The air has cleared somewhat from wildfire smoke (at least as of this writing), the weather should be fine, and at last check with the city’s chamber of commerce over 60 entries had registered with more expected.

In addition to the three school bands, the ever-popular Ophir Prison Marching Kazoo Band is a sure bet to delight spectators with their goofy costumes and choreography.

I saw them at the Jazz Jubilee in Sacramento recently with their amazing shoes and even more amazing hats. They seemed to really enjoy themselves as they made silly.

Longtime Nevada City residents and community leaders, George and Christine Foster, are the Grand Marshals. Giving their blow-by-blow descriptions of the floats are Greg Cook, who owns Friar Tuck’s, and Paul Matson, former mayor and city councilman.

Arrive by 10:30 a.m. with your lawn chair for a good vantage point among the 4,000 or more spectators expected.

Then, hang out in downtown after the parade goes by or head to the fairgrounds with 8,000 others (normal attendance says Cathy Whittlesey of the Nevada City’s Chamber of Commerce) for the live music and entertainment, food and refreshments.

I hear Montra, a Blue Suede tribute to Elvis, and Gold Country Swing are part of the entertainment.

Then, of course, comes the moment kids of all ages have been waiting for: The aerial fireworks spectacular, which blasts off at 9:30 p.m.

It was touch and go there for a while as the City Council of Grass Valley debated whether or not to go forward with the display, but as it’s a grand fund raiser for them, they came down on the side of the angels.

Fairgrounds gates at McCourtney Road open at 3 p.m. and entertainment begins at 4 p.m. Admission is $8 for adults; children 12 and under are admitted free.

No alcohol, glass, pets, barbecues or personal fireworks may be brought onto the grounds.

Shuttles will take the pressure off the fairgrounds, which are also at the moment housing lots of firefighters (hope they, too, enjoy the fireworks).

For information about all local Fourth activities, call (530) 273-4667, (800) 655-4667, (530) 265-2592 or (800) 655-6569; or go online at and

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