Although many local municipalities are canceling or dramatically downsizing Fourth of July events, Noblesville is moving ahead with its celebration, albeit with safety measures in place.
“Obviously, the health and safety of our citizens is priority No. 1, and we don’t take any decision like this lightly,” Mayor Chris Jensen said. “But based on the governor’s Back on Track plan and CDC guidelines, we are trying to make all decisions based on science and fact.”
The city’s celebrations will occur July 4, starting at 4:30 p.m. with a social-distanced outdoor parade. Paraders will not distribute items like candy and will be spread 6 feet apart.
“We also are encouraging spectators to spread out along the parade route,” Jensen said. “There are certain areas that are more highly congested than others, so we are asking those to spread out along Logan (Street), along Ninth Street and along Monument Street to make room for their friends and neighbors.
“We felt confident in our ability to accomplish that.”
Four grand marshals will take part in the parade. They are James Mackey, representing Noblesville Fire Dept.; Joyce Wood, representing Riverview Health; Jill Maynard, representing Noblesville Schools; and Trevor Schmidt, representing the Noblesville Police Dept.
Further celebrations will take place during a festival at Forest Park, 701 Cicero Rd.
“There are hand-washing stations throughout the park, and we have made the decisions to scale back and remove attractions that make it impossible to be socially distant, like inflatables, face painting, rock climbing and ziplining,” Jensen said. “We can still have fun outdoors and enjoy the (celebration) without that, and we felt (those attractions) wouldn’t be safe.”
The festival will have food vendors, and the Nickel Plate Express will offer train rides at a limited capacity. A trolley system will be available for visitors who park further away from the event. Drivers will wear face masks and have their temperature taken prior to their shift. The trolley will be disinfected after each drop-off. The festival also will have live music by Boy Band Review on the park’s golf course.
“That allows us to spread out and have a wide viewing area there at the park,” Jensen said.
VIP tables sold out a month in advance. Fireworks will take place at Forest Park. A secondary viewing location will be at Federal Hill Commons, 175 Logan St.
“We feel with those safety parameters put in place, we will have a very safe and festive Fourth of July,” Jensen said. “I feel very confident in our community’s ability to maintain their social distance, maintain their individual safety and care about their friends and neighbors. I would rather have people in the parks spread out with sanitizer stations and different safety methods in place than canceling and having small events pop up all over the community which may not have the same parameters in place.”
Parking will be limited to permit passes that Forest Park Aquatic Center will sell for the parking lot at the pool. The Noblesville Chamber of Commerce will sell permits for the lot around the Lodge at Forest Park. Proceeds from the chamber’s passes will be used to provide free disposable face masks that will be available while to guests while supplies last at the two information booths at the park. Shelter No. 5’s parking lot will be open for disability parking. There will be no other public parking available.
Schedule of events
- 4:30 p.m. – Parade
- 6-10 p.m. – Festival
- 6:30-9:30 p.m. – Boy Band Review will perform live from the stage
- 10 p.m. – Fireworks