Belpre Homecoming Festival begins today

BELPRE — The 87th annual Belpre Homecoming Festival runs today through Saturday at Civitan Park in Belpre.

The homecoming features a variety of events, displays, food, amusements, and entertainment.

The weekend will be capped by a laser light display, “Light Up the Night” at 10 p.m. Saturday with DayStar presenting a laser light show. Homecoming Coordinator Natalie Bradley is excited to bring a new feature to the annual event appreciation to all sponsors for the entire weekend.

“First Mutual Bank is a Diamond Sponsor this year, and their generosity and support brings us the DayStar show. They brought us the idea, and the committee and I ran with the concept to add an updated version of fireworks to our three-day celebration. We want to bring entertainment appealing to all ages, particularly younger guests who like lights and music in a fast pace. We think this is it,” she said.

Free live musical entertainment will take the man stage each evening at 8:30 p.m. Tonight’s show will feature classic Ohio rockers McGuffey Lane. A favorite of music lovers for many years, McGuffey Lane is an American country rock band from Athens and Columbus, Ohio.

Strutter, a Kiss Tribute Band, will perform at 8:30 p.m. Friday. One of America’s top tributes to KISS, “Strutter” was formed by Bill Sabetta (The Demon) and is based out of Akron, Ohio.

Saturday’s main concert will feature Stallion, a local band performing classic rock and radio hits from the ’70s ’80s and ’90s.

Other traditional celebrations, attractions, food/crafter and commercial vendors will be present throughout the weekend. Belpre Chamber of Commerce, The Belpre Homecoming Committee and Belpre Lions Club will sponsor the 86th Belpre Homecoming parade Saturday beginning at 10 a.m. On the grounds of Civitan Park, crafters and home-based businesses will showcase their products at the Homecoming Craft show.

The Belpre Homecoming Pageant program seeks to find children and youth to represent Belpre at civic functions and local events. Amusement rides are open throughout the entire event.

Tonight will also feature the second annual motorcycle show on the grounds of Civitan Park, hosted by the Bikers for Christ Southeast Ohio Chapter.

The show is free and open to the public, beginning at 6 p.m. Pre-registration is $10 per bike or $15 at the tent. Judging is 6-8 p.m.

A Cruise-in will roll into Civitan Park on Friday starting at 5 p.m., presented by Pioneer Antique Auto Club, with Leavitt Funeral Services as sponsor. The show is free, except for the $15 registration for car owners to show antique, custom or street rods. The rain date is Saturday at 5 p.m.

The Belpre Mile Road Race, sponsored by Memorial Health System, will be featured Saturday at 9:40 a.m. The course runs from Howes Grove Park in Belpre following Washington Boulevard. The finish line is at First Mutual Bank. Registration will be 8:30- 9:30 a.m. at Howes Grove Park. Registration is $20.

The third annual Puppy Contest will be 12:30 p.m. Saturday at the gazebo in Civitan Park. Registration fee is $10, and begins at noon. The prizes include first and second place. First place winner will receive a gift certificate to Boxers Bed and Biscuits and gift bags while the second place winner will receive a gift certificate to Boxers Bed and Biscuits. Viewing the pageant is free. Registration is open the day of the pageant or pre-registration at Boxers or by downloading an application from belprechamber.com or belprehomecoming Facebook page.

More information about these and other events at Belpre Homecoming can be found at belprechamber.com or Belpre Homecoming on Facebook.

The Belpre Homecoming Festival schedule includes:

TODAY

* 6 p.m. to close: Carnival rides and games

* 6-9 pm.: BFC Bike Show (motorcycles)

* 6:30 p.m.: Opening ceremonies

* 7 p.m.: Little Miss/Mr. Pageant

* 8:30 p.m.: McGuffey Lane

FRIDAY

* 5 p.m.: Cruise-In Car Show

* 6 p.m. to close: Carnival rides and games

* 7 p.m.: Junior Miss Belpre Pageant

* 8:30 p.m.: Strutter (Kiss Tribute Band)

SATURDAY

* 7 a.m.: Buddy Bass Fishing Tournament (Belpre Boat Ramp)

* 9 a.m.: Kids Fishing Derby (Civitan Park Pond)

* 9:40 a.m.: Belpre Mile Run and Walk (Howes Grove Park)

* 10 a.m.: Belpre Homecoming Parade

* Noon to close: Carnival rides and games

* Noon: Puppy Pageant registration begins (Civitan Park Gazebo)

* 12:30 p.m.: Puppy Pageant (Civitan Park Gazebo)

* 7 p.m.: Miss Teen and Miss Belpre pageants; Duck Pluck winners drawn

* 8:30 p.m.: Stallion

* 10 p.m.: Light Up the Night laser light show

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