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The combined Mandan High School and Middle School bands filled the air with music as they marched along the Fourth of July parade route in 2017.

Bismarck-Mandan knows how to celebrate the Fourth of July.

Mandan has taken the lead over the years with its rodeo, Art in the Park and massive parade on the Fourth. Bismarck caps off the celebration with a concert and fireworks at the Capitol during the evening on the Fourth. There are some other events tossed in to provide activities for several days.

It will be a noisier holiday this year than last when fireworks were mostly banned because of the drought. Fireworks can be used between noon and midnight on Monday and Tuesday and from noon Wednesday to 2 a.m. Thursday in Mandan. Bismarck doesn’t allow fireworks.

Morton County allows fireworks to be discharged until 11 p.m. today to Tuesday and again on Thursday. On July 4, fireworks are allowed until 2 a.m. Fireworks aren’t allowed in Morton County parks or North Dakota Game and Fish Wildlife Management Areas.

Fireworks are allowed in Burleigh County.

As usual, residents need to be careful when handling fireworks. Children always should be supervised. The holiday shouldn’t be marred by injuries or fires.

The key events in Bismarck-Mandan can keep entire families busy through Wednesday.

Art in the Park runs from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday at Dyshoorn and Heritage parks in Mandan. It offers a wide range of vendors and entertainment and has been operating since 1972.

The Fourth of July parade begins at 10:15 a.m. on Main Street in Mandan. It prides itself on being one of the longest parades in the country. This year, there are about 130 parade entries.

In the past it has had famous grand marshals like singer-actor Gene Autry. This year Miss America Cara Mund of Bismarck will headline the parade.

She’ll also be at the Mandan rodeo on Tuesday night. Mandan Rodeo Days will mark its 139th year, beginning in 1879 with a baseball game and pony races. The rodeo is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Monday through Wednesday. Family Night will begin at 5 p.m. Monday.

Fourth of July festivities will conclude with a concert and fireworks at the Capitol. Shawn Oban performs at about 8 p.m. and the Bismarck-Mandan Symphony will perform at about 9 p.m. with fireworks to follow.

There also will be celebrations in communities across North Dakota. Many people will be spending time at parks and favorite boating and swimming spots.

Of course, we need to remember we’re celebrating our independence. The Tribune believes our founding fathers would be happy to see Americans celebrating Independence Day. They sacrificed a lot for our freedom and they would appreciate us enjoying it.

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