Organizers for the annual Weekend in the Wilds say Covid-19 has given the opportunity to involve more businesses during the vendor event on Saturday, July 4. Crafters, activities for children and music will fill a three-block area in downtown Emporium instead of the one block section used in the past.

“Because of social distancing it was decided to space vendors farther apart as a way to cut down on the crowded sidewalks,” according to Cameron County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Tina Solak. Parking on Fourth Street in the three-block area will be off limits starting Saturday at 7 a.m.-5 p.m. Visitors will be encouraged to utilize Third Street and West Creek Rails Trails parking lots.

Weekend in the Wilds kicks off on Wednesday with a sidewalk sale of used books at the Barbara Moscato Memorial Library in downtown Emporium. Books will be available for purchase through Friday. Bobby Spaeth will give a free concert at the library on Friday at noon.

Friday, July 3 fireworks will blast off from the Cameron County High School Football Stadium at dusk. There will be no concession stand and the bleachers will not be available for sitting. But those attending may park in the high school parking lot and bring chairs to enjoy the show.

Mountaineer Search and Rescue Big Foot Hunt begins early Saturday morning. From dawn to 1 p.m. hunters with licenses will scour historical locations, trails, and places of interest hoping to bring home one of 12 big foots. Prizes will be awarded at 2 p.m. from the stage in downtown Emporium.

The line up of vendors begins at Guy and Mary Felt Manor where visitors will find Bobby Nester with breakfast and lunch offerings, Blankets by Tina, Carol Lininger Crafts, Red Line Signs and Design and Randy’s Penny Pincher will offer items for sale. Across the street the Cameron County SPCA will host an indoor yard sale at the former Chateau Soleil, Deb’s All Occasion Chocolates, walking tacos and Mountaineer Search and Rescue round out the activities on the block between Walnut and Chestnut Streets.

In the next block Ed Woods will offer hand made wood crafts, a wine tasting and selling area by Rich Valley Wines and Wagon Wheel Wines will be available to those over the age of 21 in a portion of the vacant lot, Phartn Barts will offer pulled pork and other favorites, Rose Perkins will offer hand sewn items while ADAS will have face painting and games for children. Across the street visitors will find Aroma Café, PA Made, Bailey’s Homestead Crafts, Storm Football, Mr. D’s Donuts and Elizabeth Young.

Marty’s Make & Paint will occupy the vacant lot which once held Jasper Clothing, Mitzi Austin Crafts, Whitman Maple Syrup, Terry Surra and Ron Armstrong will fill the block between Cherry and Broad Streets. Across the street, Cameron County Outdoor Youth Activities will feature displays, Keystone Elk Country Alliance, CDH Designs, and Kristin Thomson Candy will be located.

The final block includes Tina Dixon Jewelry, Penny Joplin Jewelry, Rotary Club of Emporium, ABATE and Cameron Moate leather wallets. On Maple Street Allegany Chapter of Nam Knights will host an open house at their new facility.

Music in the center lot at the stage features Dos Hombres from 10am-1pm followed by DJ Smokin Sounds from 1:30-4 p.m. People are encouraged to bring their own chairs and sit in the stage area while enjoying the music and visiting restaurants and vendors for take-out food.