Towns gear up for Independence Day

Plenty of observances, but none on July 4.

NJ and PA event listings.
   The Fourth of July is coming to Packet-area municipalities a little early this year, with celebrations starting in Montgomery on Wednesday and continuing in Princeton, West Windsor and Rocky Hill into the holiday weekend.
Princeton will hold its annual fireworks display — the Princeton Community Independence Day Celebration Fireworks — on Thursday at Princeton University’s athletic fields next to Princeton Stadium.
   Sponsored by the nonprofit Spirit of Princeton, the show will begin at 9:15 p.m. Attendees are invited to come as early as 6:30 p.m. and bring their picnic baskets. Alcoholic beverages are not permitted.
   The fireworks will be held rain or shine, except in the case of lightning.
   Attendees should not gather on the Washington Road bridge or the fields off Washington Road in West Windsor. Faculty Road will close at 8 p.m. and remain closed until after the fireworks display ends.
   Princeton University is providing free parking on the campus. Lot 21 — near Jadwin Gymnasium — the parking garage on Prospect Street, the lots off Ivy Lane and the lots off Washington Road all will be available to the public.
   The fireworks are free, but there will be glow necklaces and Spirit of Princeton T-shirts available for sale. Proceeds will benefit the Spirit of Princeton, which sponsors many community events, including the Memori- al Day Parade, the Flag Day ceremony and the Veterans Day ceremony.
   Ray Wadsworth, chairman of the Spirit of Princeton committee, said he expects between 4,000 and 5,000 to attend.
West Windsor
Independence Day celebrations in West Windsor will take place at Mercer County Park on Saturday.
   The county joins the radio station 97.5 The Hawk in presenting "Freedom Fest."
   The celebration will begin at 3 p.m. and conclude with fireworks at about 9 p.m. The day will feature live music, a food court, local breweries and wineries. There will also be crafts, games, amusements and a slide.
   Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital will sponsor a performance by the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra prior to the fireworks display.
   Admission is free.
   For more information, contact the Mercer County Park Commission Events and Recreation Center at (609) 448-1947.
The township will celebrate Independence Day on Wednesday, with an evening of games, food and fireworks planned.
   Festivities will begin at 6 p.m. at Orchard Hill Elementary School and will include inflatable rides and games, face painting, a raffle, food and the fireworks.
   The Infernos will perform from 7:30 to 9 p.m. The fireworks begin at dusk. No animals are allowed at the celebration.
   Call Montgomery Recreation at (609) 466-3023 for more information.
Rocky Hill
Residents will recognize Independence Day on Saturday with a community parade and picnic.
   The parade, which begins at 11 a.m., starts at the firehouse.
   The picnic, to be held at Borough Hall, will be held immediately after the parade. The RetroRock-It Band will perform. Hamburgers, hot dogs and drinks will be for sale by the Rocky Hill Hook and Ladder Company. There will also be a pot luck community picnic, where residents are asked to bring a salad, fruit or snack to share.
   For more information, call Courtney White at (609) 921-1120.