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St. Charles Riverfest

By Deborah O'Brien

St. Charles celebrates Independence Day with an annual event called Riverfest. The three day celebration is packed with food, music and fun, family-friendly activities. There's also a parade along Main Street and fireworks along the banks of the Missouri River.

When and Where:

Riverfest is held every year over the Independence Day holiday. In 2014, Riverfest is July 3 from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., July 4 from 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m., and July 5 from noon to 10:30 p.m. The celebration is held in Frontier Park, on the banks of the Missouri River in historic St. Charles.

For information on other ways to celebrate Independence Day, see 15 Top July 4th Celebrations in the St. Louis Area or Guide to Fair Saint Louis or The Veiled Prophet Parade.

The Parade:

One of the most popular events at St. Charles Riverfest is the parade. It begins on July 4 at 10 a.m., at Blanchette Park, then makes it's way through historic St. Charles. From the park, the parade route goes left on Randolph, right of Kingshighway, left on Clark, then right along Main Street to the Lewis & Clark Boat House and Discovery Center. The parade features marching bands, floats and military honor guards. It lasts just less than two hours, with the participants making their way down Main Street at about 10:45 a.m.

Entertainment Schedule:

Riverfest offers live music on the Jaycee Stage in Frontier Park. This year's performers include popular local acts like My Friend Mike and the Patt Holt Singers. All of the concerts are free, just bring a blanket or lawn chair and find a spot near the stage. For the complete schedule of entertainment, see the Historic St. Charles website.

For the Kids:

Riverfest is a celebration for the whole family, and there are plenty of kid-friendly events during the day. There is a children's area with arts and crafts, puppet shows, balloons and interactive games. The children's area is located east of the Katy Depot in Frontier Park. It's open July 4 and 5 from noon to 6 p.m.

Fireworks Display:

Another highlight of Riverfest is the Independence Day fireworks display. The fireworks are July 4 and 5 at 9:20 p.m. The show lasts for about 20 minutes. The fireworks are launched from a barge on the Missouri River and can be seen from anywhere in Frontier Park. You can also get a good view from Main Street and other areas of historic St. Charles.

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