Amarillo's Annual Fourth of July Celebration moved downtown and set for July 1 and 2

Tom Hinde

Amarillo's annual July 4th celebration will move downtown and be much, much bigger. The Amarillo Globe-News, which host's the event, announced several changes. The weekend long event will be titled "Amarillo's Route 66 Celebration," according to organizers. The event is expected to draw around 40,000 people.

The weekend long celebration kicks-off Friday, May 1 with an evening concert featuring the Casey Donahew Band at the Big Texan's new Starlight Ranch located at 1415 Sunrise Dr. Saturday's events begin at 9:00 a.m. with the Amarillo Community Market on Polk St. The Route 66: The Heart of Amarillo 2017 Festival on Sixth Ave. runs from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. featuring a car show, swap meet, antique market, art show and much more. From noon to 7:00 p..m. the Potter County Courthouse lawn will hold afternoon performances, arts, crafts and more for children to enjoy. From noon to 11:00 p.m. an array of food trucks and other vendors will be selling merchandise along Fifth and Seventh Avenues between Taylor and Fillmore Streets.

Later Saturday afternoon, from 4:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m., special hospitality centers along Fifth and Seventh Avenues between Fillmore and Pierce Streets will sell refreshing adult beverages. At 6:00 p.m. until 9:45 p.m. the Toot'n Totum Main Stage located on the block south of the Potter County Courthouse will feature four concerts beginning with the Jack C'ryver and the Rock n Roll Cowboys, followed by the A-Town Rockers, Esquire Jazz Big Band and closing with the Amarillo Mass Community Choir.

The weekend festival comes to a close Saturday evening with Amarillo's Route 66 Celebration fireworks presentation. The fireworks show promises to be spectacular and twice as big as prior years. The fireworks show is set to begin at approximately 9:45 p.m.