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Red, white, and barrels of fun. That’s the way that many people describe the July 4th festivities put on by Montreat Conference Center on Tuesday, July 4.

Staff spend a significant amount of time planning and preparing for the event, which seems to grow each year.

“Montreat’s Fourth of July parade is much loved by folks near and far. It’s the perfect mix of family and friends," said states Evelyn Coleman, one of Montreat Conference Center’s program directors who oversees the Club day-camp program during the summer. "In particular, our Clubs and recreation participants enjoy taking part in the parade each year by preparing banners and simple costumes in line with the year’s theme.”

This event is open to the community and a great way to celebrate.

The 2017 parade grand marshals are Montreat Conference Center’s president Richard DuBose and his wife, Jeannie DuBose. This year’s parade theme is “Stars and Stripes,” and the day’s events, organizers said, are a time to celebrate the community of Montreat, as well as freedom, peace, unity, and the Montreat community of faith. The parade is homespun Americana - marching bagpipers, family pets dressed to the nines, banners and crests raised high on everything from brooms to flagpoles, clown cars, decorated baby carriages and bicycles and fire trucks. And more.

After the parade, there's the annual Fourth of July barbecue. Lunch will be catered by Red Radish To-Go. Pick up a lunch on the porch of the Walkup Building from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Lunch tickets are $10 and must be purchased in advance. They will be sold through July 1 at the Montreat Store, through June 30 (9 a.m.-noon) at the Montreat Post Office, through June 30 at Red Radish To-Go in Black Mountain, and from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. July 2 outside Anderson Auditorium. The Montreat Gait 5K at 7 a.m., starting at the Montreat Gate, is put on by the town of Montreat.

Following lunch, don’t miss the pottery, bake, and rummage sale from 1-5 p.m. at the Currie Craft Center/ Sally Jones Pottery. The Montreat Store will be open 9 a.m.-5 p.m. For more about all Fourth of July activities, visit montreat.org/july4.

Schedule highlights

7 a.m.: Montreat Gait 5K race, Montreat Gate 
10:30 a.m.: Fourth of July parade, followed by flag-raising ceremony
11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m.: Barbecue lunch

2 p.m.: Old-Timers’ softball game, Welch Field
2-4 p.m.: Games on Anderson and Moore Center fields

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