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Codorus Blast opened Friday and visitors at the Codorus State Park weekend festival can be treated to some impressive feats by athletic canines during the Keystone Dock Dogs competitions. Video by Shane Dunlap | The Evening Sun

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It’s almost Father’s Day weekend, and what better way to celebrate than a family outing to a local park.

Codorus State Park is a great spot for boating, fishing, hiking, horseback riding, disc golfing, picnicking, camping, swimming and other outdoor summertime activities.

But for Father’s Day weekend, it will also be filled with live music, children’s activities, about 100 food and craft vendors, Keystone DockDogs contests and about 20,000 people.

Codorus Blast Festival in the Park – organized by The Friends of Codorus State Park – has been bringing outdoor summer fun to the park for 15 years to raise money for park improvements, assistant park manager Earl Hockenberry said. In previous years, proceeds from the three-day festival has allowed the park to install new security systems, picnic tables, band shell curtains, a new dock, a new deck and a new roof at the classroom building.

Aside from benefiting the park, here are five more reasons to go this Father’s Day weekend.

Fireworks

Who doesn’t love a good fireworks show? This year’s display will be launched closer to the blast, directly over Lake Marburg, according to the website. That means Codorus Blast-goers will have the best view in the park.

Hockenberry recommends sitting right along the shoreline or on the hillside by the bandshell building. Previous viewing locations from Route 216 and around the lake might not be available due to the new fireworks launch spot.

The show will begin at dusk on Saturday night. The rain date is Sunday, June 19.

Keystone DockDogs

Bring a blanket or a lawn chair and set up on DockDog Hill for entertainment all weekend long. You’ll see dogs catapult themselves off the end of a 40-foot dock into the water at speeds over 20 miles per hour, launch themselves nearly seven feet in the air and swim as fast as they can in this canine sport.

Contests will run from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Sunday.

Live entertainment

Dog tricks aren’t your kind of entertainment? Set up in front of the main stage to hear live music from Pentagon from 7 to 11 p.m. Friday, Across the Pond from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, Richie Fields Band from 7 to 11 p.m. Saturday and Jump Start from noon to 3 p.m. Sunday.

Children’s entertainment, including the Ray Owens’ “Hats Off To Codorus State Park,” “Animal Odyssey” and “Celebration of the “Great Outdoors,” shows will be held on the small stage throughout the day Saturday. Sunday entertainment includes Marty’s Flea Circus at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.

Family fun

Among the 100 food and craft vendors, the blast will also feature activities to keep the little ones busy. Children can make crafts, meet and learn about birds, reptiles, amphibians and other native animals at the Nature Tent, climb a rock wall, and participate in laser tag and water balloon wars.

Get on the water

You don’t have to spend the whole weekend on land. Get out on the water and spend some time with dad. Guests will be able to paddle kayaks in the Main Launch area of Lake Marburg for 30 minutes with experienced paddlers and guides. Children can also participate in a two-person kayak with a parent.  Pontoon boats, motorboats, canoes and paddleboats will also be available for rent.

Rather get in the water? The swimming pool’s summer hours are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

If you go

What: Codorus Blast Festival in the Park

When: 4-11 p.m. Friday, June 17; 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday, June 18; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, June 19

Where: Codorus State Park, 1066 Blooming Grove Road, Hanover

Admission: $5 per car

Proceeds benefit: Codorus State Park

More information: Visit www.codorusblast.org

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