There’s nothing like a city block party in the hot summer air to celebrate the summer. On Friday, the annual summer fête Celebrate Lancaster will pack a ton of food and a finely curated schedule of live music into the center of the city from 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m., all of which will be capped off with one heck of a fireworks display.
First, the food: Upwards of 20 food vendors will set up along Lancaster Square and shut down the zero block of North Queen Street, most – but not all – in food truck (or bicycle) form. Mandatory visits: some fries from Bricker’s Famous French Fries (obviously,) a burger from Lancaster BRGR Company, literally anything from Shorty’s Funnel Cakes (how can you turn flavored funnel cakes down?), and, above all, a cup or two from Coop’s Scoops. Cooper Linde, the brain behind the brainfreezing operation, pedals around on a bike with his cart of creamy milk-and-flavor goodness behind him – and if the people posting requests for a Coop’s Scoops visit for their area are anything to judge by, his unusual delivery method is only eclipsed by the quality of his product.
Next up, the music: from 5-10 p.m., two stages in Binns Park and Penn Square will ring out with the dulcet tones of some of the best musical groups in Central PA and beyond. The Penn Square stage will host regional folk and roots favorites Vulcans (5-6 p.m.), Philly’s TJ Kong and the Atomic Bomb (6:30-7:30 p.m.) and Brooklyn-based hip-hop-infused brass band PitchBlak Brass Band (8-9 p.m.). Meanwhile, the Binns Park stage will feature budding Lancaster rock act Kid Cousin (5:45-6:30 p.m.), Balkan brass band West Philadelphia Orchestra (7-8 p.m.) and wraps up with some Latin flare led by renowned percussionist Pablo Batista and the Mambo Syndicate (8:30-10 p.m.).
Finally, the fireworks: An explosive aerial display shot off from atop the Duke Street parking garage will cap the whole shebang (pun entirely intended) off at 10 p.m. There’s really no other way to end a festive event so close to the Fourth of July…
If you need help getting around, you can grab an event map at the information tent, which will be parked at the corner of Orange and Queen streets, or you can track down the friendly event staff in the green Celebrate t-shirts. If you’re thirsty for some brew, you can also track down some Sam Adams beer, which will be available at a couple different pubs along the way. Really – what more do you need to enjoy your weekend?