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Think summer: plans for Fourth of July include a few changes this year

While it may seem as though winter won’t end, summer is definitely on the horizon.

Plans for the Fourth of July celebration have a few changes in store this year because of construction at the athletic field off East River Road in Brainerd.

Traditionally the field has been a place where people gather to watch the fireworks, picnic and listen to music.

This year, construction from the football field to the bleachers and pond, is moving the location of some, but not all, of the Fourth of July events.

Nancy Cross, Brainerd Community Action director, said the parade route will be the same but the stage will move to the Brainerd High School senior parking lot on South Fifth Street. The back of the stage will face Brainerd High School.

Plans are to close South Fifth Street and East River Road to vehicle traffic to create a pedestrian friendly environment. That will mean those who typically park in the Fifth Street lot will need to find an alternate parking spot.

Parking spots have always been at a premium and this year may add just a little more pressure.

The fireworks will still be set off from the field. Cross said people who want to sit on the sledding hill to view the fireworks will still be able to do so.

Cross said 125,000 people are welcomed to the Brainerd lakes area for the Fourth of July celebration, which translates to an infusion of dollars in the region at gas stations, stores and restaurants.

Cross attended the Tuesday Baxter City Council with updates on the event changes. Cross said she wanted to get the word out early and hoped to still have a large crowd. She thanked Baxter council members for their support.

The important goal, Cross said, is to build memories, watch world-class fireworks and enjoy a carefree day.

Cross said: “That’s the goal and the most important thing we do with that Fourth of July.”

RENEE RICHARDSON may be reached at 855-5852 or Follow on Twitter at

Renee Richardson
Richardson is a Pacelli High School graduate from Austin, Minn., who earned an applied science degree from the University of Minnesota, Waseca, with an emphasis in horse management. She worked extensively in the resort industry. She received an associate’s degree from Central Lakes College, where she was editor of the Westbank Journal student newspaper, as well as a summer intern at the Dispatch. She graduated from St. Cloud State University summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in mass communications and interned at the St. Cloud Times covering business while attending SCSU. She's been with the Brainerd Dispatch since 1996.
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