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American Fork extends Steel Days celebrations, makes events free

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American Fork High School’s Marching Band has accumulated dozens of awards over the years, performing at high-profile events like the 2007 New York Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and George W. Bush’s presidential inauguration. The band will be performing in the Steel Days grand parade. (Photo by Rebecca Lane/UV360)

Community members in American Fork can get ready for an extended celebration as this year’s Steel Days is exceeding its typical timetable.

Steel Days will take place from July 6–15. This 10-day event is usually one week long, but because different circumstances, the celebration has been extended, according to City Councilman Rob Shelton.

“Steel Days is spread over 10 days this year versus a week just because of the way the Fourth of July landed and the way the carnival contracts worked out,” Shelton said. “A lot of people are probably not used to that, which means the parade and the carnival are on different days.”

The events setting Steel Days apart from other city festivals are the Picnic in the Park and Big Show that will both take place on July 15. Around 8,000 community members attend these event, and an added bonus this year is the events are free.

“A lot of city celebrations you have to buy tickets to attend, and this year, because of our generous sponsors, we are able to do that for free,” Shelton said. “People can come out and play carnival games, we have blow up toys and venders and we have great entertainment that’s lined up as well.”

There is much more than just the events happening during Steel Days. Each year, a grand marshal is chosen to represent the city. This year’s grand marshal is Mary Kawakami.

“A lot of city celebrations you have to buy tickets to attend, and this year, because of our generous sponsors, we are able to do that for free.” — Rob Shelton, American Fork city councilman

American Fork designated a day to Kawakami on July 12 back in 2012 for her work in establishing a speech contest. Besides her accomplished contest, Kawakami turned 100 years old in 2012. She is a business owner, a writer and a cancer survivor.

“Life has been one good ride, like a roller coaster — up and around and down,” Kawakami said in the Steel Days magazine. “You go to the bottom and pull yourself up again.”

The magic of Steel Days ends with the Big Show fireworks. This popular event has made a name for itself.

“We have an amazing firework show,” Shelton said. “It’s one we get many, many compliments on. It’s been known as one of the best in the valley.”

This 10-day celebration is jam packed full of events. Check out the schedule below to see the full schedule.

Steel Days Events:

Thursday, July 6 

  • Quilt Show – 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. at the Senior Citizens Center
  • Garden Tour – 10 a.m. until dark at various locations
  • City of Fun Carnival – Noon–10:30 p.m. at Robinson Park

Friday, July 7 

  • Quilt Show – 10a.m. – 7 p.m. at the Senior Citizens Center
  • Art Show – 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. at the American Fork Library
  • Garden Tour – 10 a.m. until dark at various locations
  • City of Fun Carnival – 10:30 a.m. – 10:30 p.m. at Robinson Park

Saturday, July 8

  • Quilt Show – 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the Senior Citizens Center
  • Art Show – 10 a.m. – 8 p.m. at the American Fork Library
  • Garden Tour – 10 a.m. until dark at various locations
  • City of Fun Carnival – 10:30 a.m. – 10:30 p.m. at Robinson Park
  • Car Show/Cruise – Noon–8 p.m. at Rotary Park

Miss American Fork Brittany Mangum blows the crowd a kiss in the Freedom Festival Grand Parade in Provo, Utah. The Steel Days parade is on Saturday, July 15 at 9:30 a.m. (Photo by Rebecca Lane/UV360)

Monday, July 10

  • Art Show – 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the American Fork Library
  • American Fork Symphony Concert – 7 p.m. at the Quail Cove Amphitheater

Tuesday, July 11

  • Baby Contest – Various times at Rotary Park
  • Kickball Tournament – 6 p.m. at Art Dye Park

Wednesday, July 12

  • Discount Swim Day – 12:30–10 p.m. at the AF Fitness Center
  • Zumba – 6:30–8 p.m. in the Fitness Center Parking Lot
  • Yoga – 8-10 p.m. at the Pony League Baseball Field

Thursday, July 13

  • Tea with the Queen – Noon-1:30 p.m. at the American Fork Amphitheater at Quail Cove Park
  • Horseshoe Tournament – 5:30 p.m. at Rotary Park
  • Soap Box Derby – 6-8 p.m. at 740 N. 20 E.

Friday, July 14

  • Youth Dance – 8-10 p.m. at 20 N. Church Street
  • Movie in the Park – Art Dye Park at dusk

Saturday, July 15

  • Marching Band Breakfast – 6:30–9 a.m. at the Fresh Market Parking Lot
  • Steel Days 5K/10K – starting at 7 a.m. at the American Fork Fire Station
  • Grade Parade – 9:30 a.m. starting at Main Street and 100 East
  • Picnic in the Park – 5–8 p.m. at Art Dye Park
  • Big Show/Fireworks – 8–10 p.m. at Art Dye Park
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