MONMOUTH-INDEPENDENCE -- The Fourth of July is ready to explode in Monmouth-Independence.
Organizers are putting the finishing touches on Western Days, the communities' annual Fourth of July three-day extravaganza.
The theme this year is "Honor America's Heroes."
Starting at 5 p.m. Thursday, July 3, the Monmouth Main Street Park Arts Festival begins.
Following dinner live music will be provided by the Linn-Benton Concert Band followed by more entertainment at Riverview Park in Independence.
JT & The Tourists kick off the entertainment schedule at 6 p.m.
On the morning of the Fourth, activities get going in Main Street Park at 9 a.m. The Monmouth Children's Parade starts at 11:30 a.m. followed by Fun Run between Monmouth and Independence.
The Independence Children's Parade begins at 11:30 a.m. at the corner of Monmouth and 16th streets.
At noon, The Western Days Grand Parade starts winding its way from the Western Oregon University campus in Monmouth to Riverview Park.
Carnival rides, food, crafts and novelty booths, games and entertainment are scheduled in both towns until dark.
The fireworks start over the Willamette River in Independence.
The celebration continues in Monmouth and Independence Friday, July 4, with more carnival attractions, fireworks and other events carrying through the weekend.
On Saturday, Independence shifts it into high gear with "Hometown Appreciation Day" at Riverview Park.
Live entertainment is scheduled for the evening along with a second fireworks display at dark.
The Itemizer-Observer is publishing the official guide to Western Days. It will be included in the July 2 edition of the newspaper and will be available throughout the event.