Why not join the city of Davis in celebrating the independence of our nation with pancakes, parades and parachutes? Davis is offering activities that everyone from children to college students can enjoy.
An early 4th of July activity is an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast hosted by the Davis Little League, spanning from 7 to 10 a.m.
The pancake feast will be held at the Veterans Memorial Center on 203 East 14th Street and admittance is $3, to be paid upon entering. Families should note that any Little Leaguer in uniform eats for free. For those interested in watching a Little League exhibition game, amble on over to the Davis Little League complex at Covell Boulevard and F Street.
After breakfasting on pancakes, event-goers can watch the Davis Bike Club race on F Street. The 32nd annual Criterium, a 0.7 mile race with five 90-degree left turns and a 90-degree right turn, will begin with the Elite 5 Male Racers at 7:15 a.m. and will end with the Master Male Racers ages 45 to 55 at 4:10 p.m. The start and finish line is on F and Third Street.
Jon Whitehead, Personal Relations officer of the Davis Bike Club, says that the race is open for all amateur bike racers.
“You have to have a racing license. People from all over are coming here, including some very well known racers,” Whitehead said. “The Criterium race is a relatively short course with tight turns. You have to negotiate with a lot of other people around tight corners.“
Robin Rolles, Race Team Director and coordinator of the Criterium race, and Whitehead both agree that watching kids ages 10 to 18 race is very fun. The Junior Open is at 9:40 a.m. for both male and female teen racers.
“It’s memorable. Fifty people go by in about two seconds. You feel the wind afterwards for about five seconds,“ Whitehead said.
For a complete schedule of the Davis Bike Club Criterium race, visit the DBC website at dbcraceteam.org.
The 48th annual Kiwanis Kiddie Parade will be held in downtown Davis. The main focus of the parade is the children, who decorate their bikes, strollers and wagons for the event.
“The Kiwanis Club of Davis is proud to sponsor and present this event celebrating our independence,” said Jerry Hallee, coordinator of the Kiwanis Parade. “Parents and grandparents alike enjoy the parade as much as the children. The creativity and enthusiasm of all of the participants is contagious. It’s fun for everyone.“
At 9:15 a.m., participants will gather on C Street between First and Second streets.
“Parade attendees should pick a spot on C Street between Second and Third streets to view the parade,” said Hallee.
Awards for the paraders will be given at 9:30 a.m. Scooters, bicycles and wagons will be judged based on patriotism, originality and enthusiasm. The parade will begin at 10:00 a.m. and will march to Central Park, where refreshments will be provided.
The parade will put visitors in the heart of Downtown Davis, where everything that is happening, will be happening.
From 3 to 9 p.m., there will be food and game booths in Community Park. Musical performances begin at 6 p.m. with Duval Speck followed by Music Matt and the Whole 9 Yards.
Perhaps the most exciting performance will be given by Skydance Skydiving.
“The Skydance Skydivers have been doing a 4th of July demonstration for years,” said Carrie Dyer, community services supervisor. “They skydive from above the crowd and land between the two baseball fields in a roped off area. It is very exciting.“
Dyer said she feels that watching the skydivers puts you in the perfect spot to watch the baseball games and the fireworks.
If parades, parachuting dancers and pancakes sound too exhilarating, the Community Pool will have free admission all day for the 4th of July.
The Arroyo and Manor pools will also be open for recreational swimming from 1 to 5 p.m. for a fee.
What could be more American than watching baseball on the 4th of July? Watching the 27th annual Softball Tournament, that’s what.
The Slow-Pitch Softball men’s division is having a tournament on the 4th. Lori Conrad, the Community Services program director for the city of Davis, organized the games this year.
“It’s mostly local teams. Two teams are out of Woodland, and one team came from Dixon. It’s more high strung than IM – it’s competitive. I mean, it’s a tournament,” laughed Conrad.
“The championship game is only an hour or two before the fireworks start. The preliminary games begin around 5:30 p.m., and the championship round usually begins at 8 p.m.,” Conrad said.
Conrad said there will be concession vendors selling everything from a hot dog to tri-tip steak, ice cream and drinks. “The vendors are all run by nonprofit organizations, so you can get a good meal and support a good cause,“ she said.
Purchasing your own fireworks is illegal in the city of Davis.
“Fireworks are illegal in the city of Davis, except for the ones put on in Community Park by the city, which are done by professional pyrotechnics,“ said Patrol Sergeant Rod Rifredi.
The professional fireworks show will begin at 9:30 p.m. in Community Park at 1405 F St.
Those watching the championship softball tournament are also in a good spot to view the fireworks.
“People usually sit in the outfield to watch the games, and then they are all ready to sit and watch the fireworks,” Conrad said.
MEGAN ELLIS can be reached at email@example.com.