All-American fun at Old-Fashioned Fourth

It will be an all-American summer celebration when Mercyhurst College welcomes the Erie community to its annual Old-Fashioned Fourth of July on Thursday, July 4. 

Events this year will open with a 6 p.m. performance by the Lake Erie Regiment on the front lawn of the campus and will end after the 10 p.m. fireworks display by Zambelli Internationale.

Highlights of the 2002 Old-Fashioned Fourth include 6 and 8 p.m. performances by theU.S. Army Field Band in the Mary D'Angelo Performing Arts Center and a show by the Celebrant Singers at 7 p.m. in the Christ the King Chapel. 

The U.S. Army Field Band has been thrilling audiences of all ages for more than half a century as the musical representative for the Army. Since its formation in 1946, the band has appeared in all 50 states and in more than 30 countries on four continents. Tours include formal public concerts, school assemblies, educational outreach programs, festivals, and radio and television appearances.

The Army Field Band is considered by music critics to be one of the most versatile musical organizations in the world. Its members, selected by highly competitive audition, represent some of the finest musical talent in the nation. 

The Celebrant Singers are a contemporary Christian music ministry with headquarters in Visalia, Calif. Started in 1977 by Jon Stemkoski, the singers have performed in all 50 states, throughout Canada and Mexico, and in more than 75 nations around the world.

Also performing on the Fourth is the Dave Stevens Band at 8 p.m. on the soccer field; the Music Masters at 8:15 p.m. on the west side of Zurn Hall, the Graduates at 8:15 p.m. on the front deck of Old Main; and the Dixie Doodlers in the Egan Dining Hall from 6 to 9 p.m. 

In addition to the wide variety of live music, the campus will host a dance for high school and college students in the Carolyn Herrmann Student Union from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Music for “America – Rock, Roll and Remember” will be provided by DJ Frank Rizzone.

Food vendors will be on hand to provide light summer fare while the popular Strawberry Shortcake Festival will be ongoing in the Egan Dining Hall between 6 and 9 p.m.

Other activities include ice skating performances by the Westminster and Erie Figure Skating Clubs at 7 and 8:15 p.m. in the Mercyhurst Ice Rink; and three performances by Stay ‘n Play at 7 p.m., 7:45 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. in the Mercy Quad.

Although tickets will be required for the U.S. Army Field Band concerts in the MaryD'Angelo Performing Arts Center, admittance will be free. The tickets, which will be used to determine how many guests are attending each show, will be available at the Mary D'Angelo Performing Arts Center Box Office starting at noon on Thursday, July 4. 

Tickets will be available on a first come, first serve basis until the Performing Arts Center has been sold out.

All other shows are free and open to the public. 

Due to construction on the Mercyhurst campus, parking will be limited to those lots on the west side of the campus. 

Due to the increasing size of crowds attending the Mercyhurst College Old-Fashioned Fourth of July, the Mercy Walkway between the southeastern end of the campus and Mercyhurst Prep High School will be closed on Thursday, July 4. 

The upper soccer field at Mercyhurst will also be closed when Mercyhurst College officials and public safety officers on duty have determined it is at capacity and can safely hold no more guests.

For a full, detailed list of events, visit the college Web site at

Please join us for a safe, fun and patriotic Fourth of July!

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