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Westbay plans to welcome visitors this time around

When the Westbay Center Merchants Association began the arduous task of planning its first cohesive Fourth of July celebration, some members felt they had a lot to live down.

Last year, the large parking lots that surround Westbay Center were roped off at the request of the center’s former owner, Bill Cree.

This year, it’s food, fun and fireworks and all the proceeds will be given to a good cause.

“I got a lot of information on different things that had happened in the past, and we decided we really needed to be proactive about what was happening here this year,” said Bob Hampton, the owner of the Westbay Center building and several spaces inside.

Hampton said he worked with other Westbay Center merchants, including Bay Buoy Espresso, Hi Tide Tavern, Le Garmanche Catering, Perfect Parties, Port Orchard Asian Store, Security Financial Services, South Kitsap Helpline and the Taste of Eden Bakery to create the upcoming celebration.

A children’s carnival and antique tractor show, along with live music and entertainment, food and beverages and arts and crafts will all be set up in the Westbay Center parking lots for the community to enjoy.

The evening will conclude with the annual Fathoms o’Fun fireworks show over Sinclair Inlet.

Hampton warns there will be very little parking at Westbay and encourages potential patrons of the event to park at South Kitsap High School, where Kitsap Transit has agreed to shuttle people back and forth.

All proceeds from the event will go to Kitsap National Guard Family Fund to help families in need.

“We thought that’d be a good patriotic cause to support,” Hampton said. “The one part of it that we’re still working on is the part where we’re working with some of the National Guard families themselves.”

For more information call (360) 876-4089

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