By Laurelle Walsh

The Fourth of July in Twisp offers a full day of celebration, patriotism, entertainment and art for the entire family.

The fun starts at 11 a.m. with the traditional hometown parade down Glover Street, complete with police on horseback, collectible cars, fire trucks spraying water, music, dancers and lots of flags.

It’s not too late to enter your group in the parade. Registration forms may be found on the Town of Twisp website, www.townoftwisp.com, or completed at the police department.

“Helpers” will be at the parade staging area to answer questions and register participants as they arrive, so pre-registration is not required, according to police clerk and parade organizer Vicki Hallowell. Parade entrants will begin lining up at the TwispWorks parking lot at 10 a.m.

Parking on Glover Street will be blocked off for the parade.

Spectators usually begin staking out their spots along Glover Street about an hour before the parade starts. The High Country Kickers line dancers will provide pre-parade entertainment from 10 – 11 a.m..

Immediately following the parade, in the open lot across from the Methow Valley Inn on Second Avenue, volunteer firefighters from Okanogan County Fire District 6 will demonstrate using the “Jaws of Life” to tear up a car.

Also following the parade, the 27th annual Methow Arts Festival gets underway at the Twisp Town Park on North Lincoln Street, across from the Wagner Memorial Pool.

The arts festival is sponsored by the Methow Arts Alliance, with help from community organizations, business sponsors and volunteers.

Admission is $5 for kids 5-14 years old; $7 for adults; and children under 5 get in free. Clients of The Cove food bank, Room One and the Methow Valley Senior Center get in for free, with tickets available at those locations.

Advance tickets and reduced price family passes may be purchased at www.brownpapertickets.com, Twisp Daily Business, and Riverside Printing in Winthrop.

The entire park will become a stage at the arts fest, according to its sponsor, with music until 4 p.m. provided by the Blackberry Bushes Stringband, Wild Mountain Nation and the Pipestone Youth Orchestra. The Merc Playhouse will perform a preview of its upcoming summer show, Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night; Lindsay Frady will tap dance; jugglers will toss miscellaneous items into the air; the first annual Hula Hoop Contest will get people’s hips swiveling; and two pie-eating contests will make everyone involved very sticky.

Kids and adults can get creative at hands-on art booths, including wooden boat building with Laverty Construction, copper arts with Barry Stromberger, tie-dyed T-shirts and face painting.

Demonstration booths will feature painters, needle felting, glass artists, massage therapists, and firefighters. There’s also the opportunity to make hand-painted ceramic bowls for Room One’s annual soup dinner fundraiser.

Local food, drinks and treats will be available for purchase in the park during the festival.

Methow Arts is still looking for volunteers to help out with the arts festival. To help out, or for more information about the Methow Arts Festival, call the office at 997-4004.