Shepherdstown July 4 celebration
Shepherdstown July 4 celebration
A series of events are planned for this year's July 4 celebration in Shepherdstown, as part of the ongoing recognition of the town's 250th anniversary.
The day's schedule will include the traditional 3 p.m. parade down German Street and community picnic following the parade at Rumsey Memorial Park on Mill Street.
But special for this year will be a noon ceremony to dedicate a new historical marker and a 1 p.m. concert by a U.S. Army band.
All the events are free and everyone is welcome to attend.
The new historical marker will be located on King Street, by the Town Hall, and the 12 noon dedication ceremony will be held there.
The marker is being donated by longtime resident Diana Suttenfield. It will honor the famous 1775 "Beeline March" in which a company of Shepherdstown riflemen travelled 600 miles in 24 days to Massachusetts support the Revolutionary cause after the battles of Lexington and Concord.
Ceremony participants will include Mayor Jim Auxer and other elected officials; representatives of local historical organizations; Major General James A. Hoyer, the Adjutant General of West Virginia; and representatives of the following U.S. Army National Guard units: the 201st Field Artillery Regiment, the 249th Army National Guard Band, and the 157th Military Police Company.
The participation of Army units in this ceremony is fitting because the Army accords great significance to the Beeline March. The participation of the 201st Field Artillery is particularly fitting because this unit, which is the nation's oldest continually serving U.S. Army unit, traces its lineage directly back to the Shepherdstown riflemen.
Following the dedication ceremony, the 249th Army National Guard Band will give a concert in front of McMurran Hall.
The concert will have a special local dimension. One of the Band members, Sgt. 1st Class Amanda Licea, is also the music teacher at Shepherdstown Elementary School, and she has chosen six of her best students to help direct the Band. These students will be: Zachary Pownell, Catherine Vickers, Cade Corwine, Mabel Patchell, Julianne Arnold, and Serena Swann.
After the concert, the band and other military units will take a break and have a private lunch at the War Memorial Building. The local chapters of the Daughters and Sons of the American Revolution are donating the lunch. The Shepherdstown Community Club is letting the military units use the War Memorial Building as a base of operations for the day.
The 3 p.m. parade is being sponsored by the Rotary Club of Shepherdstown, which has sponsored all the town's July 4 parades since 2007. The parade will form up on Church Street, come down German Street, and end at Rumsey Memorial Park. Marchers will include many different local organizations as well as the 249th Army Band and the other military units participating in the historical marker dedication earlier in the day.
All are welcome to participate in the parade. To sign up, contact Rotary Club member Michelle King at 304-876-0780 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The community picnic will begin at the Park as soon as the parade is over and last until 7:30 p.m. Also sponsored by the Rotary Club, it is intended as a wholesome family event. It will include music and a variety of games and activities for children. Admission will be free. Burgers and other food and soft drinks will be available for purchase.
Two musical groups will be playing at the picnic this year: a Rock band made up of members of the 249th Army Band, which will play from about 4-5:30 p.m., and Infusion, a local Jazz/Rock band, which will play from about 6-7:30 p.m.
The picnic will not include fireworks.