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Fourth of July 2018 Events

Amir Kbah

Live music, parades and fireworks are among the many patriotic Independence Day events taking place across the Tampa Bay area this week.

Sunday – July 1, 2018

The Independence Run 5K and 10K – 7-11 a.m.; Packet pick-up begins at 7, yoga begins at 7:20 and the races begin at 8 a.m. Al Lopez Park, 4810 North Himes, Tampa. All finishers will receive a race shirt and finisher’s medal. Both races will be timed, and there will be a food truck at the event as well. See site for admission costs.

Tuesday – July 3, 2018

Inverness Patriotic Evening – 5-10 p.m. Liberty and Wallace Brooks Parks, 286 N. Apopka Ave, Inverness. The event includes live music, food trucks, local charities, and a fireworks show over Lake Henderson at 9. Free admission.

Red, White and Kaboom Independence Celebration 6-9:15 p.m. France Langford Promenad, 121 S Lake Ave., Lakeland. Live music, food trucks and fireworks will dazzle attendees. Must bring at least one non-perishable food item for admission.

Independent Independence Day Dance Party 8 p.m.–12 a.m. O’Brien’s Irish Pub Brandon, 701 W. Lumsden Rd., Brandon. Enjoy a color themed night at O’Brien’s Irish Pub. Wear red for taken, white for single or blue for it's complicated. A hot dog eating contest will take place with gift card awards for the top three winners. See site for admission costs.

39th Kiwanis Midnight Run- 9:30 p.m. 2602 Bayshore Blvd, Dunedin. Race activities start at 9:30 p.m. One mile walk/run at 11:00 p.m., 5K run at 11:25 p.m., 10K Run 12:15 a.m.  See site for admission costs.


Wednesday – July 4, 2018

Independence Day at Busch Gardens – All day. Busch Gardens, 10165 N McKinley Drive, Tampa. Busch Gardens will be hosting a day of live entertainment with multiple DJ zones and a fireworks display after an acrobatics show by Kinetix at 9 p.m. See site for admission costs.

Myakka River Kayak Festival and 4th of July Jam Blast – 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Snook Haven, 5000 E. Venice Ave, Venice. Enjoy live music, craft beers, and free kayak and canoe rentals. Free admission.

Annual Freedom Fest Parade – 9-11 a.m. Town Hall, 501 Bay Isles Road, Longboat Key. Come enjoy this patriotic parade the morning of Independence Day. There will be activities, food, drinks and games at Bicentennial Park after the parade. Cannons Marina is offering a $500 cash prize to the most patriotic business entry. See site for parade participation details. Free admission.

Anna Maria Island Privateer 4th of July Parade – 10 a.m.-12 p.m. Coquina Beach South Entrance to City Pier at Anna Maria Island. An after party will be held at D Coy Ducks. Free admission.

Safety Harbor 4th of July Parade – 10 a.m.-12 p.m. Main Street, Safety Harbor. After the parade, enjoy snacks and drinks with patriotic music under the Gazebo for the Santas Patriotic Ceremony. Free admission.

Tarpon Springs Independence Day Picnic – 10 a.m-2 p.m. Craig Park, just off Tarpon Avenue at Springs Boulevard, Tarpon Springs. Bring your lawn chairs and towels for a picnic at the park. Free admission.

Temple Terrace Fourth of July Parade – 10 a.m. -12 p.m. Family Recreation Complex, 6610 E Whiteway Drive and Gillette Avenue, Temple Terrace. The parade will continue south on Druid Hills Road, to Ridgedale Road and end at the Temple Terrace Little League fields. Free admission.

Gulfport’s July Fourth Celebration – 10:30 a.m.- 10 p.m. Gulfport Waterfront Art District, 3007 Beach Boulevard, South Gulfport. Enjoy a full day of activities starting with the Kid’s Fishing Derby and the Family Sand Sculpture Contest. An Independence Day Parade will begin at 6 p.m. and end with a fireworks display at 9 p.m. on Gulfport Beach along Shore Boulevard. Free admission.

Tampa Red White & Blue Festival – 2-7  p.m. Cotanchobee Park (Channelside), 601 Old Water Street, Tampa. The festival includes a color guard welcome, Uncle Sam on stilts, local artists, southern food and live music. Other activities include a best dressed contest, raffles, carnival games and an apple pie eating contest. Free admission with RSVP, $5 per adult without RSVP, and kids under 12 are free.

Fourth Festival – 3-9 p.m. Sutton Park, 1006 6th St W, Palmetto. Charlie Daniels will be performing in the outdoor pavilion. This family-friendly event will include craft vendors, a kid zone, a beer garden and other fun activities.

Sparklebration – 4-10 p.m. Pasco County Fairgrounds. Live entertainment, eating contests, bounce houses, pony rides and petting zoos and a firework display at 9:15 guarantee fun for the whole family. See site for admission costs.

Red, White and Brews Celebration – 4-11:00 p.m. Spring Hill Lake House, 1202 Kenlake Ave., Spring Hill. Free parking and free admission. Cold beer, wine, food trucks, craft vendors, performances by The Black Honkeys and Never Stop Believin' (Journey tribute band), and fireworks.

Fourth of July Bandshell Bash - Celebrate America!– 4-8 p.m. Hernando Park, 205 East Fort Dade Ave., Brooksville. The Hernando County Fine Arts Council will sponsor a free afternoon of old fashioned fun and games complete with a musical petting zoo, storytelling, music, food, fireworks and other vendors.

Firecracker Smash'm Up!– 4 p.m. Hernando County Fairgrounds, 6436 Broad St., Brooksville. There will be a demolition derby, live music, crafts, games, bounce houses and pony rides. See website for admission costs. 

“Patriotic Spectacular,” a salute to Independence Day – 4:30 p.m. First United Methodist Church, 104 South Pineapple Avenue, Sarasota. The Choral Artists of Sarasota will be performing a patriotic concert to celebrate America. See site for admission costs.

Safety Harbor 4th of July Celebration – 5-9 p.m. Safety Harbor Marina, 110 Veterans Memorial Lane, Safety Harbor. Celebrate Independence Day with activities, live entertainment, food vendors and a fireworks display at 9 p.m. Free admission.

Plant City's July 4th Celebration – Parking lot gates open 5:45 p.m.; stadium gates open 6:00 p.m.  Plant City Stadium, 1810 East Park Road, Plant City. Various activities will be available on the stadium turf, pending weather restrictions, including inflatables, face painting, balloon art, Corn Hole bean bag toss, kid crafts, rock climbing wall, bungee jump and more. The 20 minute fireworks show is planned for 9:15 p.m. Free admission, see site for parking costs.

Downtown Tampa Independence Day Fireworks Celebration – 6-10 p.m. Tampa Convention Center, 333 S. Franklin Street, Tampa. A fireworks show will happen at 9 p.m. in front of the Tampa Convention Center. Free admission.

Selby Gardens All-American Cookout – 6-10 p.m. Selby Gardens, 900 S. Palm Avenue, Sarasota. Listen to live music from The Hydramatic, savor the All-American favorites, take part in a variety of family and children’s activities and enjoy the fireworks. See site for admission costs.

Fireworks on the Greens 6-9 p.m. Temple Terrace Golf & Country Club, 200 Inverness Ave. There will be food vendors, music and fireworks at 9:15 p.m. Free admission.

North Port’s 14th Annual Freedom Festival – 6-9:30 p.m. North Port High School Stadium, 6400 W. Price Blvd., North Port. Live music and entertainment will be accompanied by a kids area, vendor booths and a fireworks display. Free admission.

City of Largo 4th of July Celebration – 6-9 p.m. Largo Central Park, Largo Central Park Dr, Largo. Bring your chairs and blankets for a day of family fun. Free admission.

4th of July Family FunFest – 6:30-9:30 p.m. American Victory Ship Mariners Memorial Museum, 705 Channelside Drive, Tampa. There will be music, games, food, drinks, contests, and giveaways. Fireworks start at 9 p.m. at the Convention Center basin. See site for admission costs.

Tampa Tarpons vs Clearwater Threshers6:30 p.m. George M. Steinbrenner Field, 1 Steinbrenner Dr, Tampa. There will be wing specials, a specialty jersey auction, and post-game fireworks. See site for admission costs.

Fourth of July Fireworks Cruise – Board at 7  p.m. and cruise from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Yacht StarShip Dining Cruises, 603 Channelside Dr, Tampa. Choose between a cruise to Clearwater or Channelside. A fireworks show will take place at 9 at Channelside for the Channelside cruise and 9:30 at Coachman Park for the Clearwater cruise. Tickets include a buffet, open bar and DJ entertainment. See site for admission costs.

Tarpon Springs Independence Day Fireworks – 7:30-9 p.m. Howard Park, 1700 Sunset Drive, Tarpon Springs. End your day with a fireworks show in Tarpon Springs. Free admission.

St. Petersburg Fourth of July Fireworks – 8:30 p.m. St. Pete Downtown Waterfront. Fireworks can be seen all along Bayshore Drive, especially from Albert Whitted Park, North and South Straub Parks, North Shore, Elva Rouse Park and Flora Wylie Park. Free admission.

Fireworks Spectacular over Sarasota Bay – 9 p.m. Downtown Sarasota, such as Bayfront Park and Island Park. The Suncoast Offshore Festival will end with a bang with this fireworks show. Free admission.

Siesta Key 4th of July Fireworks Display – 9 p.m. Siesta Key, north of the volleyball courts. The Siesta Key Chamber will be putting on a fireworks show on the beach. Free admission.

July 4th Programs on WUSF 89.7 and Classical WSMR 89.1 & 103.9

Capitol Steps: Politics Takes A Holiday – 4th of July Edition – Saturday, June 30 at 4-5 p.m. and Wednesday, July 4 at 8-9 p.m. on WUSF 89.7.

Airmen of Note July 4, 9 p.m.-midnight on WUSF 89.7. Join us on July 4 for a special three hour, patriotic broadcast of the United States Airforce Big Band’s “The Airmen of Note.” The Airmen will be joined by all-star jazz performers singer Nnenna Freelon, drummer Peter Erskine of Weather Report fame and innovative trombonist Marshall Gilkes.

American Pieces on Classical WSMR 89.1 & 103.9 All Day July 4th, Classical WSMR will feature American pieces of music: Leonard Bernstein, Scott Joplin, Mark O’Connor, Aaron Copland, Morton Gould, John Williams, and Irving Berlin are among just a few in the great line-up we have to celebrate America’s birthday.

Florida Wind Band 4th of July Concert – July 4, 3-5 p.m. on Classical WSMR 89.1 & 103.9. Russell Gant emcees this live concert recording of the Florida Wind Band performing a musical tribute to the USA and all who serve our country.

Molly Urnek is a WUSF/USF Zimmerman School digital news intern for summer 2018.
Mark Schreiner is the assistant news director and intern coordinator for WUSF News.
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