ENID, Okla. — The city of Enid will hold activities on July 4 from 5:30 a.m. through the evening to celebrate Independence Day.

Events will be held throughout the day Thursday at Meadowlake Park and conclude with an outdoor concert by the Enid Symphony Orchestra at 8:30 p.m., which will end with choreographed fireworks at 9:30 p.m., according to a press release.

The day will start off with the annual free fishing derby at 5:30 a.m., while paddleboats, miniature golf and Kiwanis rides will be available starting at noon and lasting throughout the day, according to the city of Enid. Concessions and additional games, including a dunk tank and large inflatables, will be available to attendees beginning at 5 p.m. on Thursday.

Meadowlake Park train and rides will be open 3-9 p.m. Thursday and 6-9 p.m. Friday through Sunday. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Kick N Fit karate as a fundraiser to help send students to regional and national Soo Bahk Do karate tournaments. Enid Kiwanis Club, which operates the rides, partners with community organizations for fundraising efforts.

Leonardo’s Children's Museum will host its annual Hometown Celebration at Adventure Quest from 10 a.m. to noon July 4, featuring face painting, scavenger hunts and water balloon tosses, among other things, according to a press release. The first 250 guests will receive a free lunch, and they will hold a drawing every 30 minutes for a family prize pack, containing $40 worth of family activity supplies and free passes to local entertainment venues. The museum will also offer a new temporary “snowball” feature, 4th of July crafts and photo backdrops while open from 10 a.m.-5 p.m.

Leonardo’s celebration will cost members $5 each and non-members $9 each, according to a press release. Military visitors will receive free admission all day. Once a wristband is purchased, guests receive lunch and may return to the museum all day.

The day will end with a free concert featuring Billboard Top 100 Hits from 1967 to 1973, with symphonic rock covers by ESO of Simon and Garfunkel, The Beatles and The Doors, among others. Fireworks will be choreographed to patriotic songs at the end of the concert, and the finale of fireworks will be choreographed to “Hey Jude,” according to a press release.

“Hopefully everybody in Meadowlake Park will be singing the refrain of 'Hey Jude' as the fireworks light up the sky,” ESO Music Director Douglas Newell said. “I expect to see more than a few lighters and cellphone lights flashing in time to the music. Let’s make it happen.”

Enid Police Department is advising those attending Thursday's Fourth of July festivities at Meadowlake Park that traffic controls in the area of the park will begin at 4 p.m.

Sgt. Casey Von Schriltz said officers will be conducting traffic control in the area near the park.

There will be no parking at Van Buren Square or Catalyst Behavioral Service. GEFCO Inc.’s parking lot will be open to the public for parking, except for a few areas that are blocked off, Von Schriltz said.

"The east side of Meadowlake North will be closed off completely from 4 o'clock on. The remainder of the parking area, the west end and upper part, as soon as the parking fills that portion of the park, as well as Rupe between Johnson and Van Buren, will be closed, except for local residential traffic," he said. "We’ll have officers out there at Meadowlake South at Rupe and Van Buren and Moore and Van Buren. We will be assisting with pedestrian traffic going to the park area prior to the event."

Von Schriltz said officers will be at designated areas for traffic control prior to and after the event.

"Those who are in the area, or attempting to navigate the area, should obey all traffic control devices," he said. "Should we find motorist not doing so, they will likely be cited."

The sergeant recommended those who do not plan to attend the events at Meadowlake to avoid the area.

"Generally, from the time the fireworks begin somewhere about 9 p.m. until about 11 p.m., I would encourage motorists to use alternate routes if they need to travel through the south part of the city," Von Schriltz said.

The sergeant also urged those driving in the area of the park to be “extra vigilant” and remain attentive to their driving.

"Remain extra vigilant, especially for pedestrians and the officers that will be out there trying to help everything flow as smoothly as possibly," Von Schriltz said. "They will be in or near the roadways."

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Miller is an intern for the Enid News & Eagle. She can be reached at jordanmiller@enidnews.com. Staff writer Cass Rains contributed to this report.

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