BELGRADE LAKES — The Mill Stream boat parade is one of the most popular events planned for Belgrade’s July 4 celebration.

This year, the Bangor Daily News listed it as one of 50 “fun things to do this summer.”

The parade — featuring decorated and antique boats — starts at noon Monday at the mouth of Mill Stream on Great Pond and continues to Belgrade Lakes village.

Laura Richter, an organizer of the July Fourth celebration, said the parade can be seen from lawns in the village, including the new Maine Lakes Resource Center, which is holding an open house for the public at 1:30 p.m.

“It’s kind of neat that the boat parade was written in the Bangor paper as one of 50 cool things to see,” Richter said. “People can see it from the Village Inn lawn and watch it from the new center.

“I hope (the center is) all the things they want it to be. It’s going to be a wonderful thing for the town.”

The building is only the first phase of the project. It also includes plans for a community park adjacent to the post office, and restoration of public docks and a boathouse for the historic mail boat made famous by the movie “On Golden Pond.”

The center’s grand opening is July 30. Summer activities at the center include a farmers’ market, education programs, music, lectures and other entertainment.

The day-long July 4 festivities also includes a street parade at 4 p.m. that will start north of Belgrade Lakes village at the Rome Farm and end near the Sunset Grill.

Parade lineup for all vehicles and floats will be at the Rome Farm at 3:30 p.m. The lineup starts for bikes, walkers and marchers south of the Rome Farm.

“It’s funny,” Richter said. “People seems to know the parade isn’t until 4 p.m. so they’re able to make a float in the morning and have it done in time for the parade. It’s impromptu.”

She said Sue Gawler is this year’s grand marshal because of her volunteer work in the community. She said Gawler has served on almost every committee or board in town.

Other events include a flea market at 8 a.m.; $20 table rental proceeds will be donated to Belgrade’s recreation program.

The Friends of the Belgrade Library will hold a book sale in the village between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m.

At 10 a.m. the “Jar Project” will be at Spring Gallery & Sculpture Garden at 81 Main St. The project, which will be at the gallery all summer, was first displayed as part of “Product: A Temporal Artist Marketplace” at Whitney Art Works in Portland.

The jars vary in size, color and texture and contain a range of genres and mediums, including drawings, paintings, photographs, sculptures and mixed media.

The brainchild of Portland-based artist Alex Sax, the Jar Project highlights the creative contributions of local talents.

“It’s a really cool thing,” Richter said. “It’s 50 Maine artists who have done some kind of art in different kinds of jars.”

From 11 a.m. until 6 p.m., a bounce house will be set up at The Village Peddler, where children also can get their faces painted.

At noon, Union Church will be serving up strawberry shortcake and hot dogs. A chicken barbecue will be held between 4-7 p.m. at the Sunset Grille. And from 4:15 to 5:15 p.m., a free ice cream social will be held at The Belgrade Lakes Center For All Seasons. The social is sponsored by Gifford’s Ice Cream.

Entertainment includes the Rock & Roll Explosion in the Village Inn parking lot between 5-9 p.m.; Lunch with Lefty, a one man show, at the Village Inn; and the R&B Hall Band, which will be in the parade.

Central Maine Pyrotechnics will launch their fireworks from Long Pond at 9:15 p.m. Rain date is July 5.

“There’s just so many places to see them,” Richter said. “They shoot them off from Peninsula Park and you can see them from downtown and Great Pond.

One year we saw them from Blueberry Hill. It was so pretty from up there to see all the boats dotted around Long Pond. Just to watch the camaraderie from up there was neat. But bring mosquito spray.”

Mechele Cooper — 621-5663

[email protected]

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