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Summer fun ready to go in Armstrong County

| Friday, June 14, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
Rap Attack will hold the spotlight in Ford City on Saturday.
A Motorcyclist makes his way down Water Street along Riverfront Park in Kittanning during the 2011 Waves of Thunder festival to benefit the Kittanning Hose Co. 1.
Vendors set up booths for the 10th annual Waves Of Thunder motorcycle event a the Kittanning Riverfront Park. 0601313 JAN PAKLER I FOR THE LEADER TIMES

Summer doesn't technically start until next Friday, but this weekend promises to start the season in a big way in Armstrong County, with plenty of free entertainment lined up for Kittanning and Ford City.


The 10th annual Waves of Thunder Motorcycle Show, organized by Kittanning Hose Co. 1, is one of the company's biggest fundraising events of the year and is set to open Friday at 6 p.m. with live musical entertainment. That will be followed by a movie-in-the-park presentation of “Wild Hogs” and a fireworks display to round out the night's events.

Hose Co. 1 Chief Gene Stephens said this year the fire department is teaming up with Downtown Kittanning Inc., which will host the movie and fireworks.

“There will be lots of good entertainment and everything is very family oriented,” said Stephens, referring to the weekend of events.

He said corporate sponsors have donated funds to the company to help offset the live entertainment costs. Those costs add up to about $10,000 for the weekend's musical performances.

The highlights of the weekend include the Road Dawgs Fallen Officers Benefit Ride on Saturday — made up of active and retired police officers — and the Waves of Thunder Poker Run on Sunday, said Stephens.

He said participants in Sunday's 80-mile poker run must pay $20 to register but will get a chance to win 40 percent of the pot. If it's anything like last year, the winner will take home around $800.

More information about the motorcycle ride map routes, entertainment schedules and corporate sponsors can be found on the event website at

Ford City

There also will be plenty of free family-friendly live entertainment on tap at the Ford City Community Park on Saturday during the Car Cruise Motoring Memories II Car Show & Cruise.

The event, which will run from noon until dusk, is a planned collaboration between the Ford City Car Cruise committee and the Ford City Renaissance Community Partnership.

Joe Klink, one of the car cruise planners, said he expects a good turnout.

“I expect huge crowds,” he said. “Everybody likes hot rods and everybody likes a shiny car.”

And he thinks the monster truck “Rap Attack” show, by national act David Rappach, is likely to be a big hit.

“There's not a kid around who wouldn't want to see a car crushed,” said Klink.

“People will be able to see, hear and feel the excitement,” he said, adding that the 6,000 horsepower truck will make people's hair stand on end when Rappach revs up the engine.

Barbara and Paul Klukan, who are involved in the planning, said in a press release that two free “Rap Attack” shows are planned for 1:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.

The Blues Brothers tribute act at 2 p.m. is another free event which promises to draw a crowd.

Jen Ray, also involved in the planning, said the Shotgun Blues Brotherhood from Virginia Beach will perform the tribute act after they arrive in town driving the famous Bluesmobile.

She and other event planners have been busy preparing for Saturday by filling goodie-bags to give away to the first 200 cruiser entries.

There also will be plenty of food, games, children's activities and raffles to round out the day's events.

More information can be found on the Ford City Car Cruise Facebook page or by calling 724-525-1400.

Brigid Beatty is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-543-1303 or

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