RUPERT — The city of Rupert will launch its annual five-day Fourth of July celebration on Saturday with a day full of food, concerts and fireworks.
“I love this time of year,” said Bryce Dayton, a Rupert Fourth of July committee member. “With the parade, food booths and good bands coming in, I can’t wait. It’s my favorite time of the year.”
Twelve food booths offering a smorgasbord of food and treats are slated to line the Rupert Square during the celebration.
“I make sure I get around and try everything out,” Dayton said, who oversees the food booths for the committee. “It’s a rough gig.”
Dayton said they give priority to non-profit organizations and limits the number of vendors to 12 each year to give them a good chance of having a successful fundraiser.
“When one leaves, we add another one in,” he said.
New this year will be Kameme’s Krepes.
“We try to make sure there is a good selection of food,” Dayton said.
A couple of vendors will offer Mexican cuisine, the Robin’s Roost will have gourmet hot dogs and Philly cheesesteaks and other vendors will have items like scones, cotton candy, shaved ice and ice-cream.
The Jitter Bug will have espresso drinks and fruit smoothies, he said.
Committee member Jackie Larson is in charge of the parade, which starts at 11 a.m. on July 4 and is one of the highlights of the celebration.
This year’s theme is “America – Let’s Celebrate.” The parade marshals are Diane and Steve Schow.
“Come early to the parade to pick the best spot. Try to find some shade, stay hydrated and wear sun screen,” Larson said.
A jet flyover of the parade is scheduled by pilots from Hill Air Force Base.
“That always tears you up,” Larson said. “I don’t care who you are.”
Organizers ask people to not to park on the side streets where the parade entries line up beforehand or along the parade route.
The parade route and entry form can be found online at rupert4th.com.
A new parade class was added this year for family reunion floats. The winner of the category will win a $200 gift certificate from Ridley’s Family Markets good for barbecue supplies.
The Rupert city pool will also be open only to the family reunion parade entries on the evening of July 4.
Other events during the celebration include a fun run and bike race the morning of July 4 at East Minico Middle School. At 6 p.m., July 3 the Firecracker 500 Lawn Mower Races will be held at the Minidoka County Fairgrounds and Mutton Bustin’ will be held at 5:30 p.m. on July 2 at the Minidoka County Fairgrounds. There will be free concerts on the Square every evening.