Canton Liberty Fest returns this weekend, fireworks Friday

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After a two-year COVID hiatus, Canton Liberty Fest will celebrate its 29th anniversary with three family and fun days from Thursday, June 16 through Saturday, June 18 at Canton Heritage Park, 1150 S. Canton Center Road.

New this year, the Liberty Fest fireworks display is moving to a different day and will now take place on Fridays, just after dark. Holding fireworks on Fridays in the future will now allow for a Saturday night rain date if required.

This year’s event will take place from 1-10 p.m. on June 16; 1-11pm June 17; and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on June 18.

The festival offers carnival rides, games and special attractions throughout the weekend.

Special sensory hours will take place Thursday from 1 to 3 p.m., where carnival rides and in-between games, lights and music will be turned off for festival-goers sensitive to large crowds and certain stimuli.

Treat your taste buds throughout the festival where the restaurants and food trucks of the participating territory will present their local specialties. The Liberty Festival food and beer and wine garden will once again be located near the amphitheater.

Food trucks will be installed near the amphitheater from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The beer and wine garden operates from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday with craft beer, hard cider, and wine available for purchase.

Music will fill the stages at the Canton LIVE Amphitheater and Heritage Park for all three days.

On Thursday, Flight will perform rock and jazz hits on the Canton LIVE stage starting at 5 p.m. Starting at 7 p.m., Allentown, a Billy Joel tribute band, will take the stage playing all of the pianist’s hits.

On Thursday, the opening of the Canton Chamber of Commerce 50th Anniversary Walk of Fame will be held at 5 p.m. near the amphitheater stage. Plus, Trilogy performs at the Heritage Park Amphitheater starting at 6 p.m., delivering Pop and Top 40 hits. Freelance will perform starting at 8 p.m., covering Top 40 hits the whole family will love.

Carnival rides are always a big draw at Canton Liberty Fest, which runs June 16-18 at Heritage Park on S. Canton Center Road.

Highlights of Friday’s Canton LIVE stage include Canton community bands performing from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Starting at 5:30 p.m., the Mainstream Drive Band will have the audience dancing with popular covers across all genres. Then at 8 p.m., The Fruits will take the stage with alternative rock, power pop, funk and jazz.

Friday Amphitheater entertainment will feature the Surfzup Band – Music of The Ventures, who will entertain audience members with 1960s hits from 5-7 p.m.; a special hula performance with local dancers is at 7 p.m., and Jimmy Buffet tribute band Air Margaritaville will perform from 8 p.m.

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Saturday highlights include the annual Canton Lions Club Pancake Breakfast from 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. in the North Pavilions. Michigan’s Chris Cakes returns to flip pancakes on plates for those brave enough to grab them. Plus, a variety of fun characters will also be on hand to add to all the fun from 9:30-11am, including Princess Leia and Darth Vader.

Canton Leisure Services is once again partnering with Running Fit to host the eighth annual Liberty Run, featuring 5k, 10k and one-mile events. Participants are encouraged to register at www.cantonlibertyrun.com and run, walk or stroll at these events. Participants will also receive finisher medals, as well as a race t-shirt. Running-themed prizes will be awarded to the best “Liberty” running outfit.

On Saturdays starting at 11 a.m., The Home Depot will provide model hot air balloons to the first 200 kids ages 4 and up who stop at their craft tent, located near the amphitheater.

Other Saturday Canton LIVE! Entertainment highlights include: The International Festival’s cultural performances and presentations will start at 11:30 a.m. and last most of the day.

Highlights of the Saturday Amphitheater Stage include: A special presentation of the Juneteenth Celebration Stage beginning at 3:00 p.m., featuring performances by Jack and Jill of America Incorporated and the Oak Park Marching Band. Additionally, festival-goers will hear from keynote speaker and master of ceremonies Pamela Osborne, a Canton native and WDIV-Channel 4 presenter/reporter.

In addition, starting at 5:30 p.m., festival-goers will be able to enjoy Motown favorites. This June 19 celebration will culminate with a performance by Detroit blues queen Thornetta Davis from 8-10 p.m.

Other festival highlights include: The Canton Club 55+ Annual Liberty Fest Picnic for Seniors 5-7pm Thursdays at the Amphitheater. For details, call 734-394-5485.

Ax throwing, archery, surf simulators, exotic and barnyard animals and more are planned throughout the weekend.

Hydration and misting stations will be available throughout the park to allow festival-goers to cool off.

Be sure to check out the wares from local artisans, artisans, businesses and vendors around the large pond at the Liberty Fest Marketplace from 4 p.m. until dusk on Friday and 11 a.m. until dusk on Saturday.

Festival-goers are reminded that no dogs are allowed on the festival grounds and that all bicycles must be parked in a bicycle enclosure.

For more information, visit www.cantonlibertyfest.com or call 734-394-5360.

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