Fireworks, concert, parade back on the schedule for Dublin's Independence Day celebration

A. Kevin Corvo
ThisWeek group

The Fourth of July in Dublin will look a lot more like past years than in 2020.

A parade, concert and fireworks are on the schedule July 3 as Dublin – and many other central Ohio communities – resume traditions that were canceled last year during the height of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

“We are excited to bring the community back together to celebrate our nation’s freedom,” said Alison LeRoy, events director for Dublin.

This map shows the route for the Dublin's Independence Day parade July 3.

Last year, Dublin staged small neighborhood parades, including a bike parade, and its fishing derby carried on, but the traditional downtown parade and evening concert and fireworks were canceled, said Shirley Blaine, a public-information officer for Dublin.

“Following (Gov. Mike DeWine’s) announcement that revised state guidelines (effective) June 2, the city reevaluated its plans (and) determined Dublin can return to a traditional celebration,” Blaine said.

The city’s daylong celebration July 3 begins at 8 a.m. with the 35th annual Sherm Sheldon Fishing Derby at the pond at the Dublin Community Recreation Center, 5600 Post Road.

The parade in downtown Dublin will begin at 11 a.m. and will be led by grand marshal Kathy Jackson, a 33-year resident who served as a PTO leader for Dublin City Schools and supports the St. Stephen's Community House, Holy Family Soup Kitchen and other charitable causes.

Tickets are not required for the fishing derby or to observe the parade.

The parade will begin at Metro Place North on Frantz Road, south of state Route 161, travel east on Route 161 to High Street and south on High to the vicinity of John Wright Lane, where it will conclude.

No candy will be distributed along the parade route, Blaine said.

The city’s evening celebration will begin at 4 p.m. when the gates open at Dublin Coffman High School, 6780 Coffman Road.

The first of four stage performers start at 4:15 p.m.

Divas!, a celebration of the contributions of women to music, will open the live entertainment.

The Fabulous Johnson Brothers, a six-piece soul-and-rock band whose performances are in the style of Prince and Bruno Mars, will take the stage at 5:45 p.m.

90's Kids performs at 7:15 p.m. and the headliner, MojoFlo, a central Ohio band that blends funk, soul and reggae, will perform at 8:45 p.m.

Among those expecting to be stageside are Dublin residents Michael and Heather Isler.

"We are looking forward to getting back to some of our favorite summer things," said Heather Isler, who began going to Dublin's Independence Day concerts with her husband in 2004.

The following year, they got a table for the concert by Huey Lewis & the News.

"We got two tables some years and invited family and friends," Heather Isler said. "We are looking forward to going back this year."

Past performers have included Pat Benatar, Kenny Loggins and other national recording artists, but Isler said she is pleased to see local bands and performers in the lineup this year.

To cap the night, the fireworks are scheduled to start at 9:50 p.m.

However, the times for the live performances and the fireworks are subject to change, Blaine said.

Tickets are required for the live entertainment and fireworks, with the exception of auxiliary seating on the lawn, Blaine said.

The number of tickets will be reduced this year “but not significantly,” Blaine said.

About 12,000 wristbands for seating in Coffman’s stadium were available in 2019 but that number is being reduced to about 9,000 this year to allow for more distancing among patrons, Blaine said.

The number of stage-side tables also has been reduced, and the number of patrons at each table has been adjusted from 10 to eight, she said.

However, there is the opportunity for additional nonticketed seating because the Kid’s Zone, an area of inflatable rides will not be offered this year, providing additional common area for patrons to sit on the lawn, Blaine said.

Tickets for reserved tables and individual admission for $5 apiece are being sold at dublinohiousa.gov.

Reserved tables of 8 are available for $100 to Dublin residents only. Tickets are required for children 4 and older to be seated at reserved tables.

The purchase of tables is limited to one per household.

Any remaining tables will go on sale to Dublin City Schools district residents and the general public June 25.

Tickets and tables must be purchased in advance online and are nonrefundable.

Food and nonalcoholic beverages may be taken into the stadium but also will be available for purchase at the event.

Prohibited items include pets, alcohol, drones, sparklers and candles, beach umbrellas, glitter and confetti.

For more information, go to dublinohiousa.gov/events or check the city's social-media accounts.

kcorvo@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekCorvo