Honoring local heroes will be the focus of the Westland Area Business Association's annual Independence Day Parade and events.

Honoring local heroes will be the focus of the Westland Area Business Association's annual Independence Day Parade and events.

Activities will take place on Saturday, July 4, beginning with a parade at 9:30 a.m. The parade route begins at the corner of Westwoods Boulevard and will head east onto West Broad Street, ending at Old Village Road in Lincoln Village Plaza. Activities for all ages will be held at Lincoln Village until 2:30 p.m.

Event coordinator Mary Allen said WABA chose the Prairie Township Fire Department as this year's honorees.

"WABA wants to recognize how the fire department is a great supporter of the Westland Area and it is an integral part of the community," Allen said. "We want to honor them for keeping us safe."

Allen said she wants residents to know that the Westland area is proud of and thankful of those individuals who are serving in the United States military.

"We want everyone to know that the Westland Area is proud of our country and thankful of our troops who protect us," she said. "The Westland area is full of spirit and hope for the future."

This year the parade will feature floats, horses, Cub Scout and Girl Scout Troops, the Red Hat Society and the Prairie Township Fire Department. Because the Southwestern City Schools levy did not pass, there will be no participation of high school bands, she said.

Allen said the theme of the event this year is called Spirit of the Westland Area. The Grand Marshals of the parade are Wayne, Steve and Ellen Ulrey of Flyers Pizza and Subs.

"They were chosen by the committee because they have played important roles in the business association," Allen said. "Steve has been a past president of WABA and a lifelong resident of the West Side. His father Wayne started Flyers Pizza and they all are great supporters of the Westland area."

Once again prizes will be awarded to the best of the parade floats in the following categories: Best Commercial, Best Theme, Best Youth and Best Church, Allen said.

Family oriented activities will also be taking place on the plaza this year, starting at 11 a.m., Allen said.

For the kids there will be a bouncy house, face painting, crafts, games and an eating contest.

Food will be sold by Westland High School Athletic and Band Boosters and will include American classics such as hot dogs, hamburgers, root beer floats and more.

The Westland Area Commission will have a booth at the plaza, where residents have the opportunity to vote on the commission's new logo.

There will be a raffle and drawings for up to $500 in cash and other prizes. Raffle tickets will be on sale at the plaza starting at 9:30 a.m.

"The Westland Area Independence Day Parade and Celebration is a time-honored tradition on the West Side," Allen said. "It is a time for the community to come together and celebrate our freedom, our independence and to pay honor to this great country and area we live in."