Fourth of July activities are plentiful

The Fourth of July in Wilton will be a lot more than fireworks this year.

“We’ve got a full day planned,” said Jim Lewicki, program director for the Parks and Recreation Department, who said the events begin at 8:30 a.m. with a 5K Freedom Run Road Race at the Wilton High School track.

The race fees are $10 for each child 14 or younger, and $20 for each individual 15 and older.

The competition will be separated into age and gender groups. There will be a Men’s Open, for men 17 to 55 years old, Youth Boys, for boys 11 to 16 years old, Junior Boys for boys 10 years and younger,  Men’s Senior, for men 56 and older, Women’s Open, for women 17 to 55, Youth Girls, for girls 11 to 16 years old, Junior Girls, for girls 10 years and younger, and Women’s Senior, for women 56 and older.

Signup forms are available at the Parks and Recreation offices in the Comstock Community Center.

The second big event of the day for Fourth of July will be the Republicans vs. Democrats softball game at noon, at the high school softball field.

They call it the Frivolity Bowl.

“We have high hopes of regaining possession of the Frivolity Bowl bucket,” said Deborah McFadden, chairman of the Democratic Town Committee.

“We’ve been playing 50 years. It’s just a fun thing,” said Democratic team manager Eric Fanwick.

The high point of the day comes at night, when at 9:30 p.m. or thereabouts the fireworks show gets underway at the high school field. It will be the same size, pyrotechnically, as previous years, but savings were made this year by having a disc jockey and a dancer instead of a live band. Money was also saved on staging that way.

The disc jockey will entertain early arrivers with music from 5 p.m. and dancing will be encouraged. There will be food trucks.

The cost is $35 per carload for Wilton residents up close, and $20 per carload further away.

First Selectman Lynne Vanderslice will be enjoying it too, although not participating in the softball game.

“Fourth of July is one of everyone's favorite days in Wilton. It provides a sense of townwide spirit. Steve Pierce and his staff work hard, including on the 4th itself, to make sure residents have a great experience at the activities leading up to the fireworks and the fireworks themselves,” Vanderslice said. “I've been asked to participate in the softball game, but fortunately I'm aware of my limits so I won't be participating.”