Best of July: Fireworks, sharks and Shakespeare

York Dispatch

For the third year, Santander Stadium will host York's free Fourth of July celebration, presented by York Traditions Bank. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. Saturday and fireworks set off beginning at 9:30 p.m. In between, country artist Brittany Opperman will perform at 6 p.m., sponsored by great Country 107.7 WGTY, and the U.S. Army Jazz Ambassadors will take the field at 8 p.m. for an all-American performance, presented by General Dynamics.

Also, the CGA Family Fun Festival on Brooks Robinson Plaza outside the stadium will have inflatables, a foam dance party, mechanical bull and plenty of food, and at the Stauffer's Playground inside the stadium, the carousel, bounce house and other playground favorites will be open. For adults, the track will be lined with lawn games such as cornhole and CanJam.

No outside food or drink will be permitted, but the food stands and grills at the stadium will have special treats to celebrate the nation's 239th birthday. The fireworks finale will be presented by Glatfelter Insurance Group, and the best seats will be on the outfield — bring a blanket, no lawn chairs allowed. Free parking is available at Small Athletic Field, Northwest Triangle and parking garages on Philadelphia and King streets. Information:

Looking for a cool summer day on the water? York County Parks offers boat rentals at Lake Redman in William Kain County Park. Kayaks, canoes, paddleboats and rowboats are available 1-7 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and 9 a.m.-7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday all summer. Information:

Actor Granville Van Dusen has performed his one-man play, "The Memoirs of Abraham Lincoln," for the past 25 years around Gettysburg and across the U.S. Van Dusen will give his final performance of the play July 10-26 at Totem Pole Playhouse in Fayetteville, Adams County. The production is sponsored by the Lincoln Leadership Institute at Gettysburg. Tickets: $20-$45. Information:

Sharks! Learn more about the unique creatures and how they have adapted to survive during a National Aquarium presentation at two York County libraries that will dispel some myths and teach kids in kindergarten through grade six more about the fish. Catch the program 10-11 a.m. Tuesday, July 14 at Glatfelter Memorial Library in Hanover or 1:30-2:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 29 at Arthur Hufnagel Public Library of Glen Rock. Information:

Country artists Girls Guns and Glory will bring their Hank Williams tribute Show to Gettysburg with a performance at 10 p.m. Friday, July 17 at The Garryowen, 126 Chambersburg St. This season marks the fifth year the band has toured with the tribute. Information:

Learn about life in the early days of York County at Colonist for a Day, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, July 18 at the Colonial Complex, West Market Street and Pershing Avenue in York City. Participants will adopt the name of an early settler and travel a version of the Monocacy Trail, buy supplies and try some colonial-era games. Information:

Come back to the 21st century for Wingstock, noon-6 p.m. Saturday, July 18 at Brooks Robinson Plaza, just outside Santander Stadium. The event features contests for wings along with plenty of other contests, a suicide wing-eating competition, beer garden and adult trike obstacle course. Tickets: $6 in advance, $8 at the door, children under 3 free, each ticket includes three wings and people's choice award vote. Information: or 848-3610 ext. 248.

DreamWrights' Theatre Under the Trees returns with its annual Shakespeare production, performed free in parks around York County. This year the troupe is setting the calendar to the early 1920s for "Twelfth Night." The play tells the story of shipwrecked twins, focusing on the female twin, Viola, searching for a safe haven and disguising herself as a boy to work for Duke Orsino. Viola falls for Orsino while carrying his words of love to Lady Olivia, while Olivia falls for Viola. There are a drunken uncle, a singing jester and a priggish steward, and then Viola's twin, Sebastian, washes into town. Performances are at 6:30 p.m. unless marked, audiences should bring lawn chairs or blankets: Friday, July 24, Pinchot State Park; 5:30 p.m. Saturday, July 25, Brown's Orchard; Sunday, July 26, Cousler Park, Manchester Township; Tuesday, July 28, John Rudy County Park; Thursday, July 30, Sam Lewis State Park; Friday, July 31, William Kain County Park; Saturday, Aug. 1, Codorus State Park; 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 2, DreamWrights, 100 Carlisle Ave. Information: or 848-8623.

Want to learn to fish but don't have the equipment? At the Family Fishing Program, Adam Spangler from the state Fish and Boat Commission will have the rods and help beginners or those who want to sharpen their angling skills. The program is 6-8 p.m. Friday, July 24 at William Kain County Park in the Sparton Road Parking Lot. Registration is required at or with Adam at 717-486-7352 or

There's gold in that thar park, and you can get your hands on it at a Gold Panning Seminar, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, July 25 at Spring Valley County Park. Park staff and members of the South Central Chapter of the Gold Prospectors & Treasure Hunters of America Inc. will teach newcomers to pan for gold. Bring a pie pan and a container, and wear boots or old shoes. Free. Information:

Boz Scaggs brings his remarkable musical career to York with a show at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, July 26 at the Strand Theatre, 50 N. George St. Scaggs began his work in the late '60s with the Steve Miller Band, and his solo work has wandered through Texas, Louisiana and Oklahoma, leading to his latest album, "A Fool to Care." Tickets: $50-$75. Information: or 846-1111.