Labor Day is known as the “working man’s holiday.”  And thanks to hard working Chamber members, the last big weekend of the summer will be another epic one. To help make the most of it, here’s a rundown of some of the Wood River Valley’s Labor Day weekend highlights.

Parade Around

One of the largest non-motorized parades in the country will clomp its way down Main Street in Ketchum for the 60th time. On Saturday at 1pm, the Wagon Days’ Big Hitch Parade flashes the Wood River Valley back to its mining days. The parade features scores of historical–themed entries and finishes up with the famous 20-mule team ore wagons.

While the Big Hitch Parade brings the past alive, the 95th Annual Bellevue Labor Days Parade honors the past while paying tribute to today. Kids especially like how parade entries honor the makers of candy like Snickers bars and Red Vines. Main Street in Bellevue is lined with families well before the Labor Day Parade kicks off at noon on Monday.

Listen to Live Music

Great tunes start Thursday night with country singer Junior Brown playing his Billboard hits at The Mint in Hailey. Mahoney’s will also host their last Thursday Night Show of the season.

Friday night offers Nekkid Rednecks at the Silver Dollar Saloon in Bellevue.

Saturday afternoon features Brandon Lay playing at the Street Party at Ketchum’s Town Square.

On Sunday night, Grammy- and Oscar-winner Ryan Bingham will take the stage at the glorious Sun Valley Pavilion.

Labor Day celebrations in Bellevue include live music throughout the day at Memorial Park.

Enjoy Artistic Expressions

Ketchum hosts a Gallery Walk from 5 to 8pm on Friday. You can also watch “Goonies” under the stars at the Sun Valley Pavilion’s Movies on the Lawn that night.

If you prefer live theater, The Spot in Ketchum will present the dark comedy, “American Hero” by Bess Wohl through Saturday night.

Also on Saturday, Sun Valley on Ice will star 2019 United States Gold Medalists Ashley Cain and Timothy LeDuc.

Outdoor Adventures

            For the 7th time, Rebecca’s Private Idaho will offer mountain races of all kinds throughout the Wood River Valley. Festivities supporting local nonprofits run from Thursday through Sunday, including the Off-the-Wagon Days celebration and gelande quaffing contest to wrap up “Rebecca’s Ride.”

With all the action going on, it might also be wise to include some downtime at one of your favorite coffee shops, restaurants or watering holes, and maybe do a little yoga. Sun Valley Resort will offer two sessions of Yoga at River Run on Saturday morning.

While Labor Day is meant to give a break to hard working Americans, in tourist-based economies like the Wood River Valley, the holiday weekend can be one of the longest of the year. So we hope those of you who work in the retail restaurant, recreation, or lodging businesses especially, get to enjoy some of the festivities. Labor Day is meant to honor you!

By Mike McKenna

This story originally appeared in the Weekly Sun.

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