Sisters adds event for Fourth of July


Last updated 4/30/2024 at 9:42am

Following the decision by Sisters Eagle Airport to discontinue the July 4th Rumble on the Runway, an event that had grown to over 4,000 in attendance, community leaders scrambled to find an alternative event, one which would have broad family appeal.

After negotiations with the City, Rotary Club of Sisters has teamed with Citizens4 Community (C4C) and has filed a formal permit application for a multi-function event to be held at Village Green Park. The organizers had wanted to continue the tradition of the car show, a popular part of the airport event.

The City would not agree to close Main Avenue, or any street, for more than a half hour. A three- to four-hour closure is needed to accommodate the approximately 60 expected cars. Moreover, the City suggested that the event be held at Village Green Park as opposed to Fir Street Park, which the organizers preferred.

As there will be live music and line dancing, the bandstand at Fir Street Park was deemed better suited. In its strong push for the event to be held at Village Green the City cited its expectations that the crowds would overwhelm the Fir Street location.

However, given the overhanging trees discharging sap, and the proximity of valuable vintage cars to other planned activities, the car show will not be included.

“None of these car owners are going to be happy parking around the Village Green perimeter while a ‘kids on wheels’ parade and pet parade goes past them within inches,” said Kellen Klein, C4C executive director.

The event will kick off with the Rotary pancake and sausage breakfast at 7:30 a.m. Run Sisters Run will put on a Red, White, & Blue 5K run at 7:45 a.m. Sisters veterans groups will lead a patriotic flag ceremony at 9 a.m.

The pet parade will begin at 9:30 a.m. followed by the Kids On Wheels Parade at 10 a.m. both once or twice around Village Green (depending on the number of entrants and their speed). Pets are encouraged if they are agreeable to don stars and stripes attire, and kids are urged to decorate their bikes, trikes, scooters, and the like with festive paraphernalia.

Dry Canyon Stampede will fire up the music at 10:30 a.m. with some intermittent line dancing led by Carol Ast-Milchen. All the while in the background are a variety of activities, including a livestock demonstration by Cloverdale Livestock Association, a local 4-H Club.

Across the street, the fire house will have an open house throughout the morning and kids will be able to experience engines and ambulances in a hands-on environment.

“Kids and families will be the focus of the event,” said Sandy Reilly, incoming Rotary president. “The key word for the day is fun.”

The kids events will be led by C4C and include a visit from the Children’s Museum, contests like water balloon toss, foam horseshoes, cornhole, watermelon seed spitting, and other lawn games reminiscent of old-fashioned Americana celebrations.

There will be a grilled lunch option served by Rotary and typical summer and fair food vendors. Fika Sisters Coffee will have coffee, tea, and sweets as the event gets going.

Explore Sisters has been integral in working with the organizers. It is hoped that the event grows in scope and attendance, and eventually draw from outside Sisters Country, as the airport program did.

“This is a bridge event to keep the momentum alive and benefit our downtown merchants. We hope it can move to SPRD next year and be a destination event for years to come,” said Bill Kelly, current Rotary president.


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