Hampton celebrating the Fourth on the Third
Next Tuesday marks Hampton Township’s long-celebrated Independence Day Community Celebration on July 3, with free swimming, music and fireworks.
“We’re very proud of what we’ve had over the years. It’s truly a family-friendly event,” said Alex Zarenko, who is the director of community services for Hampton Township.
He’s never heard how far people travel to come to the Hampton event, but since it’s not competing with other communities’ Fourth of July celebrations the following day, they can get a pretty good crowd.
And since Independence Day falls midweek, many people are not traveling out of town. So they expect there will be even more this year, said Chris Lochner, municipal manager for Hampton Township.
Zarenko said they could get up to 10,000 visitors. Lochner even suggested it could be close to 15,000, according to discussion at the recent township meeting.
All activities are situated in and around the community center on McCully Road.
There will be free swimming from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Hampton Township community pool.
There will also be children’s games for age 12 and younger scheduled from 3 to 8 p.m. as well as six free inflatable attractions for all ages.
Food, community and activity booths will be open from 3 p.m. until the start of fireworks.
“We have more community involvement this year than what we ever had,” Lochner said.
Suzanna Krispli, who is director of Hampton’s library, will reprise her role singing the national anthem about 6:45 p.m. prior to the start of a concert by local classic rock musicians the Austin Drive Band, which will play from 7 to 9 p.m.
“I consider it an honor and privilege to be singing the national anthem. I’m always anxious when I sing, especially acapella — you don’t want to start singing off key,” Krispli said.
She’ll be accompanied by a flag-raising ceremony courtesy of Boy Scout Troop No. 195.
Fireworks will begin after the concert.
Several Pennsylvania politicians are planning on attending including Pennsylvania State Rep. Hal English, State Sen. Randy Vulakovich and State Rep. Keith Rothfus, Lochner said.
There’s also a chance Gov. Tom Wolf may be in Western Pennsylvania for the Fourth, so he indicated he may be able to stop at Hampton’s event if his schedule permits, Lochner added.
Hampton fire police and police department will be there regulating traffic and parking as usual, said Hampton Chief of Police Tom Vulakovich. Specific traffic patterns will be set up during fireworks. There will be designated areas for parking as well, such as the high school.
Natalie Beneviat is a Tribune-Review contributor.