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Enjoy July Fourth weekend in Ripley County

   There’s always plenty to do in Ripley County for the Fourth of July holiday. This year is no different. There will be three straight days of fireworks, food and fellowship for those who want to go to Milan, Osgood, and Versailles.

  On Independence Day Milan will have their annual festivities that include a large parade with everything red, white and blue. People line the streets early to make sure to get their favorite spot for the parade at 10:00 a.m. You don’t have to register ahead of time to get in the parade, just go to the high school parking lot and you can get in line.  That night fireworks will be seen in the evening sky over Milan at the Daren Baker Memorial Park.

  Friday, July 5 the Ripley County Chamber night “United We Stand” will be held for the 19th year at the Ripley County Fairgrounds Park in Osgood. This is a family oriented event where everyone can enjoy food booths, flea market and crafts and live entertainment by the Keith Swinney Band at 7:00 p.m. sponsored by Margaret Mary Health.  Some outstanding fireworks will take place at dark. Bring your lawn chairs and enjoy the evening with family and friends. The fireworks are provided by a grant from the Gilmore and Golda Reynolds Foundation.  For free booth space or additional information, you can call the Ripley County Chamber of Commerce Office at 1-812-689-6654.

  Also on July 5, a Star Party will take place at the Versailles Sports Complex from 8:30 to 10:00 p.m. This is sponsored by the Tyson Library and the Cincinnati Astronomical Society. This is an awesome program that allows attendees to view star and planet gazing through high-powered telescopes. Call the library to sign up at 812-689-5894 or you can sign up on line at www.tysonlibrary.org.

  To close out an awesome three days of celebrating our country’s independence, fireworks will be displayed on Saturday, July 6 starting at 10:00 p.m. over the lake at the Versailles State Park.

  For those who wish to celebrate by setting off their own fireworks – there are some precautions to take. First, the Department of Insurance warns that damage from fireworks may not be covered by homeowners or renters insurance policies.

  “It’s important for Hoosiers to consider the consequences before using fireworks,” said IDOI Commissioner Stephen W. Robertson. “If someone using fireworks accidentally starts a fire, to their own property or that of their neighbors, they may not be able to turn to their insurance company for coverage.”

  In 2017, the Indiana Department of Homeland Security reported that 77 percent of all reported fireworks injuries occurred from July 1-7, and 39.5 percent of all firework injuries happened on July 4. Fireworks use on private property accounted for 61.3 percent of reported injury cases.

  Indiana law says that fireworks can be purchased by people 18-years-of-age and older. Fireworks can be used on the user’s personal property, the property of someone who has consented to the use of fireworks on that property; and at a location designated specifically for the use of consumer fireworks.

  According to the Indiana Department of Insurance, fireworks may be used from 5 p.m. until two hours past sunset on June 29-July 3. On July 4, fireworks may be used from 10 a.m. until midnight, and on July 5-9 they can be used from 5 p.m. until two hours after sunset. You should check with local officials to see when fireworks can be discharged as local ordinances may further restrict usage.

  Above all, when having a good time celebrating, be careful and don’t drink or use drugs when you are driving. Police will have an increased presence over the holiday weekend to make sure everyone is abiding by the rules of the road for everyone’s safety.