BATAVIA – There are several new things planned for this year’s Picnic in the Park, which begins at noon Wednesday in Centennial Park off Richmond and Ellicott avenues.
The entertainment lineup features many long-standing traditional performances, including the Batavia Concert Band’s opening performance at noon.
The lineup with also include some new acts, including the a capella ensemble Cut Off. The group of singers includes David Porter, the son of Ric and Deb Porter who have helped organize the Genesee-Orleans Regional Arts Council’s Picnic celebration for years.
Theatrical swordplay takes centerstage when Engarde to Encore presents a performance of “Love Letter’s Lost,” a 30-minute original play.
Activities are scheduled through 5 p.m. Admission is free.
The Fourth of July forecast for Batavia is hot, with high temperatures near 90 degrees. If you're going out to Picnic in the Park, or any of the areas other Fourth of July events, be sure to have liquids readily available to stay hydrated and be sure to use sunscreen.
Picnic in the Park, the city of Batavia's community Independent Day celebration, features all-day musical entertainment, an arts and crafts show, folk arts programs, food vendors, children’s activities and more.
The Batavia Concert Band opens the city’s Fourth of July celebration at noon with a performance of “The Star Spangled Banner,” among other popular selections.
Several acts, such as Kelly’s Old Timers and the McMahon School of Irish Dance have performed at Picnics in year’s past, though not recently.
"We are delighted to have them back," said Kelly Kiebala, executive director of GO ART!
Also look for new vendors in the arts and crafters area and food court.
New artists and crafters include handmade book arts and jewelry, made from old fairy tale books and crystals; alpaca hats, gloves, scarves, toys, yarn and socks; beaded pictures and banners; patio lights and figurines; children's cloth books and placements; fleece blankets with crochet borders; solar lawn lights made using pressure-treated wood and decorated with figurines; wind chimes made out of teapots and silverware, and wooden birdhouses made out of garden tools.
Coffee Culture joins the food court to offer coffee, iced coffee, chillers, muffins and cookies. Return food court favorites include the Batavia Area Jaycees hots, burgers and sausage; Batavia Players selling pizza; and Landmark Society of Genesee County with strawberry shortcake. Other menu items include french fries, fried dough, candy apples, waffles, kettle corn, Abbott's frozen custard, soft pretzels and fresh-squeezed lemonade.
Representing local non-profits will be the library van from Richmond Memorial Library, artist Beth Allen with matted and framed photos and painted birdhouses for the Genesee County Mental Health Association; and Volunteers for Animals with t-shirts, sweatshirts, magnets and cats and dogs.
Genesee County Youth Bureau will offer sand art and free balloons. The Genesee Area YMCA will bring an inflatable bounce house and obstacle course.
Look for the Explore Art! Tent, which offers children the chance to create one-of-a-kind cars that will be sent to active service men and women. Patriotic temporary tattoos will also be available.
Picnic in the Park entertainment schedule:
On the Main Stage
Noon - Batavia Concert Band
Sousa-esque marches & big band numbers
1:00pm - Genesee Chorale
From motets and madrigals of the
Renaissance to folk, musicals and jazz
1:45pm - The Henrie Brothers*
Old-time music by this quartet of brothers
3:15pm - Cut Off
Unique contemporary a cappella
4:00pm - Kelly's Old Timers*
Traditional square dance music with one of
the Genesee region's best callers
12:30pm & 3pm - Batavia Players
Performing excerpts from "On Broadway-
Third Time's the Charm"
1:30pm - Engarde to Encore
Presents "Love's Letters Lost?," a scene
inspired by the traditons of the Commedia
dell'Arte and featuring theatrical swordplay
2pm & 3:45pm - McMahon School of Dance*
Keeping in Step with Tradition!