Summer flying by, Hometown Days on deck

As the buzz from the Independence Day celebrations of last week wears off, New Carlisle residents know that the real party comes at the end of July.

So in case you didn't quite get your parade and fireworks fix, Hometown Days will offer that and much more! Now in its 15th year, the festival promises to provide a weekend full of family-friendly summer fun from Friday, July 26 through Sunday, July 28.

Memorial Park opens at 3:00pm ET on Friday afternoon with arts, crafts, and a variety of food vendors setting up shop for the entire weekend.

Inflatable attractions, carnival games, and a speed pitch booth will give the kids plenty of activities to do over the three days.

Friday evening will feature a performance by Brock and Abrams on the St. Joseph Energy Center Stage in the Gazebo beginning at 6:00pm and leading into the annual Fireworks Spectacular.

The fireworks will be shot off from the Olive Football Field at dusk. (In the event of inclement weather, the fireworks would be rescheduled for Saturday night).

Saturday is the busiest day of the festival, with the park re-opening at 10:00am.

Be sure to stake out your spot on Michigan Street, as the Parade sponsored by the New Carlisle Business and Community Association starts at Noon. The route begins at Dollar General and will conclude downtown.

Some of your favorite characters from the parade will stop by the park afterwards for a dance party and photo-op. Also following the parade, kids ages 3-12 can participate in pedal tractor races on the east side of the park on Bray Street. (Note: Bray Street from the stoplight to Chestnut will be closed for the duration of the festival.)

New this year, New Carlisle's Got Talent will take the stage from 3:00pm to 5:00pm on Saturday afternoon. Ten local acts will show off their abilities with prizes going to the top three performers.

Local favorite Down By The Dock jazz band will headline the Gazebo on Saturday night, as they will perform at 6:00pm.

Around town, the American Legion will be host to the massive Hometown Days Auto Show from 11:00am to 3:00pm on Saturday.

South of the park at the Little League complex, 20 WIFFLE® ball fields will be full of action, as teams from across the country will battle it out for a bid to Sunday's Hometown Cup Playoffs.

The festival will wind down on Sunday. The park opens at 10:00am, with entertainment beginning at Noon. Jim Bulanda takes the stage first, followed by Elvis and The Sweet Sensations to close out the festivities.

Also on Sunday, the Champions of Wiffle®Ball will be crowned. Forty-eight teams will begin the day with hopes of raising the Hometown Cup, but only four will advance to Migley Field for the Hometown Cup Finals beginning at 1:20pm.

Spectators are encouraged to bring a lawn chair and come out to the ballpark to see the top teams in the sport in an event that is uniquely New Carlisle.

For those unable to make it to Migley in person, the semifinals and The Wiffle®Ball Championship Game will be broadcast live on broadcastsport.net and 106.7 FM in Migleyville.

The next issue of The Gazette will be a special edition festival guide for the weekend. If your business or organization is having a special sale or event that weekend, send it in to be posted in the Community Calendar. More details on the festival can be found on page 12 or at www.hometowndays.net.

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