With Washington state poised to drop COVID-19 restrictions June 30, and with health departments cautiously reducing social distancing restrictions, the City of Centralia’s Summerfest is expected to be held, though with a reduced slate of events.
Last week, the city published an event lineup for the annual celebration that falls on the Fourth of July. While this year’s celebration might not look similar to years prior, the city has found a new partner in co-host Bethel Church, and the two will offer a number of community events this year.
“We’re just trying to offer as much as we can to people,” said Chelsea Kane, coordinator with the city’s Parks and Recreation Department and Summerfest organizer.
The lineup was posted to the city’s Facebook page. This year’s Summerfest will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Fort Borst Park, located at 2020 Borst Ave. The holiday firework display starts at 10:30 p.m. at Fort Borst Park.
Shuttle service will be provided between Centralia High School and Fort Borst Park from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
An historic vehicle display will take place between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., showcasing antique fire trucks courtesy of the Society for the Preservation and Appreciation of Antique Motorized Fire Apparatus in America. The display will also include military vehicles and a 32-foot Vietnam War-era river boat.
At 10 a.m., at the park’s South Stage, there will be a Fourth of July presentation honoring veterans and law enforcement officers. A kids bicycle parade, hosted by Bethel Church, will take place at noon in the parking lot and participants are encouraged to bring their decorated bikes to the area for staging at 11:30 a.m.
The Voetberg Family Band and Edgewater will provide live music.
Summerfest attendees will have their choice between two free lunches between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. Sierra Pacific will be serving hot dogs, chips and drinks, and Bonanza BBQ and Catering will serve pulled-pork sandwiches. Reichert’s Distributing will be handing out ice cream.
This year’s fireworks display will be comparable to past years, Kane said, with many hundreds of colorful displays due to light up the night sky on the Fourth.
Last year, Summerfest was largely canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The only event that went on was the fireworks show. Just weeks ago, as cases locally rebounded, city staff were gearing up to host a largely scaled-back event, coined “Summerfest-lite” by City Manager Rob Hill, according to previous reports in The Chronicle.
This year’s event will still be scaled back, Kane said, but many of the new events and traditions that are being held this year should keep attendees excited and engaged.
“We hope it goes well and everyone has a good time,” she said. “I think that it’s going to be a lot of fun. We’ve got some good speakers coming in and some great music … It’ll definitely be something to look forward to.”