If there’s something Osceola and Clarke County, Iowa can take pride in, it’s our exuberance in celebrating the 4th of July. From bands and fun runs to parades and fireworks, the activities surrounding the 4th in Osceola and the surrounding communities seem to be never-ending.

osceola 4th of july activitiesTo help narrow down the search, and provide a single resource for our residents, ClarkeCountyLife.com has reached out and compiled as much information on the 4th of July activities in our area as we could find.

Of course, if we’ve forgotten ANYTHING, we want to add it to the list. Please send it through our “Submit Your News Story” page and we’ll make sure to have it included as soon as possible.

Unless otherwise noted, all activities listed below are at the Osceola Square – Courthouse lawn / Bandstand.

(Additional descriptions form band bios and more are also included at the end of this article.)

Activities in Osceola and Clarke County, Iowa for 4th of July 2015:

*Thursday, July 2

5:30 PM– 4th of July Opening Ceremonies – Osceola Square – Courthouse lawn / Bandstand.

Following Opening Ceremonies:

  • Pie Auction Winners Announced and Pies Auctioned off Immediately afterward!
  • Little Miss/Mr. Contest,
  • Following Mr. / Miss Contest – Music by Jared Blake

7:00 PM– Music by Jake McVey

Friday, July 3

  • 12:00 PM– Music by Rick Burke
  • 2:00 PM– Music by The Half Moons
  • 4:00 PM– Pet Contest
  • 5:30 PM– Music by Travis Martin
  • 9:30 PM– Fireworks
  • 9:45 PM– Fireworks

Saturday, July 4

• Starting at 6:30 AM– Pancake Breakfast

The Osceola Fire Station will be holding a freewill donation pancake breakfast, all proceeds will go towards the July 4th festivities. On the menu includes pancakes, sausage, bacon, scrambled eggs, coffee, orange juice.

firecracker run 4th of july osceola

click for more information

• 7:00 AM- Firecracker Fun Run

Registration begins at 6:00 AM in the Mosaic Parking lot, across from the Osceola Fire Station. The fee will be $20 for those who have not yet registered, kids under 10 are free.  More information on the Firecracker Run can be found on the Chamber Web site calendar here.

• 11:00 AM– The Parade!

Immediately following the Parade:

  • Car, Tractor, Motorcycle Show, Jason Dent
  • 1:00 PM– Talent Show
  • 2:00 PM– Weigh-In for Arm Wrestling Contest (bandstand)
  • 3:00 PM– Arm Wrestling Contest
  • 4:00 PM– Music by Einstein’s Junk Yard
  • 5:00 PM– Beer Tent (Adults – over 21)

• 5:15 PM– Guns & Hoses BBQ Contest Judging

The fourth annual Guns & Hoses BBQ contest will take place at the Osceola Fire Station. Meats must be ready for judging at 5:15 p.m. There are four categories: Pork Loin, Chicken, Pork Ribs, and Beans. Trophies will be awarded to the winning contestants.

• 5:30 PM– Public BBQ Dinner

The dinner will be held at the Osceola Fire Station. For $8 each meal will include a pork loin sandwich, chips, dessert, and a drink. All proceeds go towards the Fire Department.

8:00 PM– Street Dance with Jake McVey (lasts until Midnight)

Sunday, July 5

  • 10:00 AM – Clarke County Youth Rodeo (At the Fairgrounds)
  • 11:00 AM– Community Church Service
  • 12:00 PM– Dance-A-Cross & Lady Blaze
  • 2:00 PM– Linda Graves, Spinning Demonstration
  • 2:00 PM– Kids Tractor Pull
  • 2:00 PM– Water Fights
  • 4:00 PM– Music by Zef
  • 7:00 PM – Music by The Blue Band

* Carnival Rides, Pony Rides, Dunk Tank, and Home Business Venders Daily

About the bands:


For 34 years The Blue Band, plays approximately 125 days a year, mostly traveling 300 miles from its foundation in Cedar Falls, IA. The group performs original and cover blues, soul, rockabilly and rhythm, and blues groover. Nearly all of their tour dates take place in Iowa but the band also makes appearances in Minneapolis, Omaha, Kansas City, and Chicago.

independence day celebration clarke county iowa

Career highlights include a 25-year run at the Iowa State Fair, five appearances at the Mississippi Valley Blues Festival, two appearances at the Kansas City Jazz & Blues Festival, and opening for a variety of well-known blues artists including B.B King, Koko Taylor, and Bobby Rush. The Blue Band has over 25 album releases, five vinyl records, and were the first among Iowa groups to release a CD in 1987.


His sound has been compared to Bob Segar and Travis Tritt combined with a little Chris Daughtry. In 2011, Jared Blake appeared on the #1 rated show on NBC, The Voice. He landed a spot on Blake Shelton’s team with his acoustic guitar and 14-million viewers watching him sing Dixie Chicks’ “Not Ready To Make Nice” and “Use Somebody” by the Kings of Leon. His performances have all appeared in the worldwide charts more than 56 times, reaching as high as #16 on the iTunes charts. Jared Blake’s opportunities led him to be featured on magazines such as People and Rolling Stone, television morning shows, and syndicated radio shows across the U.S. He has played with popular country bands and artists like The Band Perry and Lee Brice. Some of his fan’s favorites include, “Don’t Mind,” “Countryfied,” and “Stomp.”

Einstein’s Junkyard (EJ) BAND

Einstein’s Junkyard started in 1990 where members Bob and Karen were playing in a heavy metal group, Montoya in Des Moines, IA. They had played a few originals but the majority of their songs were cover tunes. When they moved to Osceola, they collaborated with many musicians in the surrounding area, involving themselves in different band projects. The group’s ambition is writing their own music with their other members Kenny Kitterman and Rick Burke.


Known as “T-Marv” by his fan base, the Kansas native Travis Marvin has been sharing his passion for country music for nearly a decade. He has sold thousands of copies of his recent single “Again Someday” which tells a story that hits close to home for many of his fans. He has shared the stage with famous country artists such as Eric Church, Little Big Town, Luke Bryan, Clay Walker, Blake Shelton, the Eli Young Band, Florida Georgia Line, and many others.


The Half Moons are a dynamic acoustic trio performing a wide range of covers as well as original music. The band was formed in 2012 by Osceola native and resident Rick Farlow and has evolved into its current lineup including Rick on rhythm guitar and percussion, Ryan Moffit of Des Moines on lead and rhythm guitar and vocals, and featuring Jenny Throckmorton of West Des Moines on lead vocals.

The Half Moons cover artists ranging from John Prine to Janis Joplin, and Janes Addiction to Johnny Cash. There is literally something for everyone at The Half Moons live performances. The Half Moons perform locally in the central Iowa area and regionally as far as Minneapolis with recording sessions in Kansas City.

For more information on the band including music samples and booking information go to www.thehalfmoons.com.


Rick Burke’s Traveling Music Show started with Rick’s love for acoustic music. Often accompanied by musical friends, Rick Burke’s appreciation for REAL music (no bells or whistles) can be heard in towns surrounding the Osceola area.


Jake McVey, an Iowa farm boy from Mediapolis, Iowa writes, records, and tours from his home in Nashville. Touring across the country for his fans, he has played for outdoor crowds of 22,000, opened for artists like Kenny Chesney, Lady Antebellum, and Dierks Bentley, and has released three albums; Unknown Highway, Anything is Possible, and Best Days of Our Lives.


Iowa’s Own, ZEF has five band members who have made many appearances in Osceola and surrounding areas. Their End of Civilization tour has played for benefits, bars, and other events.

Of course, if we’ve forgotten ANYTHING, we want to add it to the list. Please send it through our “Submit Your News Story” page and we’ll make sure to have it included as soon as possible.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
  1. There is also a Clarke County Youth Rodeo at the fairgrounds on Sunday starting at 10 AM. 🙂

    • Thanks Emily. We’ve added that!
      CCL Admin