Independence Day, better known as the Fourth of July, commemorates the Declaration of Independence, which was ratified by Congress on July 4, 1776. These days, it is celebrated with parades, fireworks, picnics, barbecues and concerts. The following is a list of 58 ways we found to whoop it up for the Fourth of July in the Tampa Bay area.
Top events by city
Dunedin: Hometown USA: Celebrate America and enjoy live music by the Bay Kings Band, a screening of “Angels in the Outfield” and fireworks. Free. 7 p.m. July 3. TD Ballpark, 373 Douglas Ave., Dunedin. 727-812-4530.
Gulfport Fourth of July: Gulfport celebrates Independence Day with a kids fishing derby (8-10:30 a.m.) at the recreation complex. Bait is provided, but all anglers must bring their own pole and tackle. There’s also a patriotic-themed sand-sculpting contest (10 a.m.-noon) on Gulfport Beach, a parade on Beach Boulevard (6 p.m.), music by the New Horizons Band (7 p.m.) at the Casino and fireworks (9 p.m.). Free. 8 a.m.-9 p.m. July 4. Gulfport Casino, 5500 Shore Blvd. S, Gulfport. 727-893-1118.
Fourth of July Tarpon Springs: The City of Tarpon Springs presents the 14th annual Picnic in the Park with live music by Oyster Bone, waterslides, food, drinks, a hot dog eating contest and fireworks viewing at 8:45 p.m. at Fred Howard Park, 1700 Sunset Drive, Tarpon Springs. Free. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. July 4. Craig Park, 100 Beekman Way, Tarpon Springs. 727-942-5628.
Fourth of July Tampa: It’s a “Star Spangled Sparkman” for Fourth of July in Tampa with live entertainment, a game zone, roaming characters, the blessing of the fleet, a boat parade, water ski show, food, drinks, photo-ops and a waterfront view of the “Boom by the Bay” fireworks spectacular. Free. 4 p.m. July 4. Sparkman Wharf, 615 Channelside Drive, Tampa. 813-345-5881.
The Fourth: St. Petersburg: Salute our nations birthday at The Pier’s second annual celebration with a run, craft beer garden, food trucks, vendors, live music by Nightrain, roaming entertainers, a performance by the 13th U.S. Army Band and fireworks (9 p.m.). Free. 4-10 p.m. July 4. St. Pete Pier, 600 Second Ave. NE, St. Petersburg. 727-822-7437.
Fourth of July Largo: Get to the park early to stake out your spot for Largo’s celebration with food trucks, music and fireworks by Indian Rocks Baptist Church. Free, $5-$10 parking. 5 p.m. July 4. Largo Central Park, 101 Central Park Drive, Largo. 727-586-7415.
Safety Harbor Fourth of July Celebration: Bring the whole family out for a July 4 celebration Safety Harbor style. There will be children’s activities, live entertainment by the Trop Junkies and Stimulus, food vendors and plenty of fun for the whole family. Get a good seat at the marina or waterfront park for the fireworks display (9 p.m.). Free. 5-9 p.m. July 4. Water Front Park, 110 Veterans Memorial Lane, Safety Harbor. 727-724-1555.
Avalon Park Fourth of July Celebration: Join Avalon Park for Wesley Chapel’s celebration with a bounce park, bike parade, bake-off, community performances and fireworks (9 p.m.). Free. 5-9 p.m. July 4. Avalon Park, 33613 SR 54, Wesley Chapel. 813-783-1515.
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Clearwater Celebrates America: The City of Clearwater relocates its Fourth of July celebration from the traditional venue of Coachman Park to BayCare Ballpark. The celebration includes a concert by the Black Honkeys, all American concession foods, children’s activities, giveaways and a giant fireworks display (9:15 p.m). Tickets $5, parking $5. Starts at 6 p.m. July 4. BayCare Ballpark, 601 N Old Coachman Road, Clearwater. 727-467-4457.
Treasure Island Fourth of July: Bring a beach chair or a towel to “Celebrate America” and watch Treasure Island light up with fireworks shot from the beach near Gulf Front Park. Free. 9 p.m. July 4. Gulf Front Park, Gulf Boulevard and 104th Avenue, Treasure Island. 727-547-4575.
St. Pete Beach Fourth of July: The City of St. Pete Beach will only be having a fireworks display this year. The fireworks will be launched from a vacated area at the end of Corey Avenue. Best viewing will be from Horan Park. Free. 9 p.m. July 4. Horan Park, 7701 Boca Ciega Drive, St. Pete Beach. 727-363-9245.
Zephyrhills Summerfest: Independence Day Celebration: Celebrate Independence Day with the whole family at this festival with food trucks, DJ dancing, live music, a kids zone and a 30-minute fireworks finale over the lake. Kids Zone wristbands benefit local charities. Free (kids zone additional). Noon-9 p.m. July 2. Zephyr Park, 38116 Fifth Ave., Zephyrhills. 727-674-1464.
City of Inverness Patriotic Evening: Bring chairs and blankets for an evening of live music by the Bearded Brothers Band and Eddie Montgomery of Montgomery Gentry. The festival also includes food vendors, kids games and fireworks (9:15 p.m.). Free. 5:30-10 p.m. July 3. Liberty Park, 286 N Apopka Ave., Inverness. 352-726-3913.
Freedom Festival: This alcohol-free early Independence Day celebration includes inflatables, face painting, yard games, a paintball range, food, drinks and fireworks. Free (food/drink additional). 5:30-9:30 p.m. June 29. Fellowship Baptist Church, 13515 U.S. 301 N, Thonotosassa. 813-982-1000.
Fourth of July at SeaWorld: Fourth of July is celebrated for four days this year at SeaWorld. The celebration features the Ignite 360 fireworks spectacular, followed by an extended patriotic fireworks finale. Included with admission. 9 a.m.-10 p.m. July 1, 9 a.m.-11 p.m. July 2-3, 9 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday. SeaWorld, 7007 SeaWorld Drive, Orlando. 800-327-2424.
Fourth of July Parade: Line 70th Street between the Life Enrichment Center and Hamilton building to cheer as the preschool students parade down the street. Then gather in Jerger Hall in the Life Enrichment Center for a free hot dog, chips and watermelon lunch. Registration required for lunch. Free. 10:30 a.m. July 1. Pasadena Community Church, 227 70th St. S, St. Petersburg. 727-381-2499.
Fourth of July Dance: Wear red, white and blue or stars and join the Tampa Bay Dance Club to dance to music by DJ and singer Jorge Perez. Hot dogs available for purchase. $12. 7:30-10:30 p.m. July 1. Tampa Bay Dance Club, 5601 Hanley Road, Tampa. 813-390-7160.
Independence Silent Party: Wear red, white and blue, put on a pair of headphones and choose from three genres of music to silently dance the night away. $10. 9 p.m.-1 a.m. Friday. American Social Bar and Kitchen, 601 S Harbour Island Blvd., Tampa. 813-605-3333.
Busch Gardens Fourth of July: Busch Gardens splashes the summer sky with a colorful pyrotechnics show featuring fireworks, fountains and special effects on the Festival Field. Included with admission. 9:15 p.m. July 1-4. Busch Gardens, 10165 N McKinley Drive, Tampa. 813-884-4386.
Patriotic Ride and Roll: Bedazzle your golf cart, bike or scooter with patriotic decorations and join a parade through downtown New Port Richey. Check in at Fitzgerald’s and line up at Railroad Square. $2-$10, spectators free. 10 a.m.-1 p.m. July 2. Downtown New Port Richey, Main Street and Grand Boulevard, New Port Richey. 727-853-1016.
America F@ck Yeah Bar Crawl: Sport your American swag and join other drinkers for this multi-stop bar crawl with drink specials at each venue, giveaways and four drink tabs for BOGO specials. Stops include Whiskey Exchange, The Galley, Crafty Squirrel, Pour Judgement, Where’s Jubes, Mary Margaret Olde Irish Tavern, One Night Stand and Thirsty First. $17.76-$60. 4-11 p.m. July 2. Whiskey Exchange, 540 Central Ave., St. Petersburg.
Fourth of July at the Food Park: Listen to music by DJ Classixx as you do arts and crafts and feast on food from six food trucks. Trucks include Al Stilo Peru, the Latin Dug Out, Lenos, Total Tacos, Villa Colombia Chicken and La Fritanga de Tonita. Free (food/drink additional). 6-11 p.m. July 2. Tampa Food Park, 5226 Gunn Highway, Tampa.
Independence Day at MacDinton’s: MacDinton’s SOHO expands the Fourth of July celebration into two days. Enjoy drink specials all day, a cookout and a contest for most patriotically dressed (both days). Free (food/drink additional). 11 a.m. July 3 and July 4. MacDinton’s Irish Pub, 405 S Howard Ave., Tampa. 813-251-8999.
Fourth of July Sandbar Party: Take your boat and join the John’s Pass Sandbar Day Drinkers for a party on the sandbar just off John’s Pass. Free. Noon-5 p.m. July 3. John’s Pass Village, 12902 Village Blvd., Madeira Beach.
Fourth of July at Caddy’s (Gulfport): Gulfport celebrates Independence Day big, and Caddy’s joins in the fun with beach games, a cookout, face painters (1-4 p.m. Sunday), DJ dancing (1-5 p.m. Monday) and live music by the Foundation (5-8 p.m. Sunday) and Hurricane Shane (7:30-10 p.m. Monday). Free (food/drink additional). 1-8 p.m. July 3, 1-10 p.m. July 4. Caddy’s, 3128 Beach Blvd. S, Gulfport. 727-592-2842.
Fourth of July at Caddy’s (Treasure Island): Caddy’s Treasure Island wants you to bring the family for beach games, face painters, DJ dancing and live music by Abraham Billings (5:30 p.m. Sunday), Black Honkeys (8:30 p.m. Sunday) and Crownz (5 p.m. Monday). No cover (food/drink additional). 1-8:30 p.m. July 3, 1-5 p.m. July 4. Caddy’s on the Beach, 9000 W Gulf Blvd., Treasure Island. 727-360-4993.
Fourth of July Day Party: Hallback’s line dance crew throws an all-genre dance party with music by DJ Triple X. $15 women, $20 men. 3-9 p.m. July 3. Hallback’s, 4103 FL-574, Plant City. 813-967-0178.
Dunedin Goes Carting: Patriotic Golf Cart Parade: Deck out your golf cart in red, white and blue, and kick off Hometown USA with a parade to a party at the VFW with live music, food, drinks, games and a view of the fireworks at TD Ballpark. Free. 4:30 p.m. July 3. Start Point, New York Avenue and Virginia Street, Dunedin.
Fourth of July Weekend: Konpa Dance Party: Take a class to learn the Haitian dance style before open dancing with music by the Mixx Brothers. $15, $10 students, $25 for two. 9 p.m.-2 a.m. July 3. District Dance Academy, 14100 U.S. 19 N, Clearwater. 727-306-8101.
Lutz Fourth of July Parade: The Lutz Fourth of July celebration includes an early morning Jazzercise (7:15 a.m.), a 1-mile fun run (8:45 a.m.), a flag ceremony/national anthem/prayer (9 a.m.) and a parade (10 a.m.). Free (food/drink additional). 7:15 a.m.-12:30 p.m. July 4. Lutz Civic Center, 98 First Ave. NW, Lutz. 813-240-5492.
Temple Terrace Fourth of July Parade: Dress in patriotic colors and join Temple Terrace residents for a walking parade through the streets to wave flags in tribute to our country. Free. 9 a.m. July 4. Start Point, 6610 Whiteway Drive, Temple Terrace.
Fourth of July Parade: The American Legion Auxiliary will host a patriotic parade down Main Street. Wear your red, white and blue and be ready for a good time. Enjoy free snow cones, water, snacks and patriotic music at the gazebo after the parade. To enter a float in the parade, call 727-726-9601. Free. 10 a.m.-noon. July 4. Main Street Safety Harbor, 750 Main St., Safety Harbor. 727-726-9601.
Fourth of July Picnic: The picnic on the front lawn features free food, games, popsicles, a slip n’ slide, water balloons, music and a chance to pie the pastor. Free. 11 a.m.-2 p.m. July 4. Limona Village Chapel United Methodist Church, 408 Limona Road, Brandon. 813-689-8385.
Homebuyers Day on the Beach: Fourth of July Edition: Homebuyers, put on your bathing suits and sunscreen to meet up with mortgage officers, real estate agents, insurance agents and home inspectors in a casual setting. Look for the Miller Lite tent. Free. 11 a.m.-8 p.m. July 4. On the Beach, 19305 Gulf Blvd., Indian Shores.
Fourth of July Sloppy Joe’s: Get out to Sloppy Joe’s for an all-American barbecue celebration with games, live music and a viewing of Treasure Island’s fireworks at 9 p.m. Free (food/drink additional). Noon-9 p.m. July 4. Sloppy Joe’s, 10650 Gulf Blvd., Treasure Island. 727-367-1600.
Fourth of July Family Picnic: Celebrate our independence with family style games, drinks, food and a raffle. Bring a dish to share. Free. 1 p.m. July 4. VFW Post 4321, 2010 W Morrison Ave., Tampa. 813-374-2490.
Fourth of July Skate: Put on skates and patriotic attire for this skating party with free hot dogs for the first 30 minutes and a hot dog eating contest for a $200 cash prize. $7. 1-5 p.m. July 4. Astro Skate Pinellas Park, 10001 66th St. N, Pinellas Park. 727-546-0018.
Fourth of July Tampa Heights: Armature Works will have a stage set up along the Riverwalk for an evening of live music, along with a perfect view of Tampa’s Boom by the Bay. There will also be a kids zone, art auction, boat parade, hot dog eating contest and water ski performance. $35-$100. 3-10 p.m. July 4. Armature Works, 1910 N Ola Ave., Tampa. 813-250-3725.
Fourth of July Kayak Party: Bring a flashlight to paddle for a view of St. Petersburg’s fireworks. If you don’t own a kayak, text 727-515-2105 to reserve one. Unvaccinated people are required to wear masks on the non-paddle portion of the party. Free (kayak reservation additional). 3 p.m. July 4. Party Venue, 7524 15th St. N, St. Petersburg. 727-515-2105.
Fourth of July: Hot Dog Eating Contest: 25 contestants from around the Bay area compete to see who can eat the most hot dogs in five minutes. $25. 4 p.m. July 4. Armature Works, 1910 N Ola Ave., Tampa. 813-250-3725.
Fourth of July at the River Church: A community-wide picnic with hamburgers, hotdogs, potato salad and coleslaw is followed by a church service (6 p.m.) and fireworks (8:30 p.m.). Free. 4 p.m. July 4. The River at Tampa Bay Church, 3738 River International Drive, Tampa. 813-971-9999.
Fourth of July: 2000s Party: Dress as your favorite public figure, character or performer from the early 2000′s for the second annual Independence Day party. $10-$20. 4-9 p.m. July 4. Tangra Nightclub, 1611 E Seventh Ave., Tampa. 813-344-4489.
Boom By the Bay: Riverwalk: Grab a drink and get to the Riverwalk stage for a patriotic performance by Jennifer and the For Reals. Stick around for a view of Tampa’s Boom By the Bay fireworks display. Free. 5-9 p.m. July 4. The Straz Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N MacInnes Place, Tampa. 813-229-7827.
Fourth of July Celebration: The lakefront celebration features food, activities and fireworks (8:30 p.m.). Lawn chairs and blankets welcome. Free. 5-9 p.m. July 4. Mary Help of Christians Center, 6400 E Chelsea St., Tampa. 813-626-6191.
Fourth of July Party: Bring blankets and chairs for music on the deck, along with a hamburger or hot dog dinner and fireworks. Kids get one free hot dog. $8, kids free. 5-11 p.m. July 4. American Legion Auxiliary Unit 138, 5535 W Prescott St., Tampa. 813-839-5119.
Fourth of July Extravaganza: Bring the entire family for gourmet food trucks, local beer, fine wines, live music and fireworks. $10-$25. 5 p.m. July 4. Starkey Market, 3460 Starkey Blvd., New Port Richey. 727-375-7606.
American Family Celebration: A family style interactive block party with food trucks, music, a kids zone and fireworks. Free. 6-9 p.m. July 4. The Great Life Church, 14494 Cortez Blvd., Brooksville. 352-293-7673.
Rev, White and Brew Festival: Get into the spirit at Lead Foot City’s annual car/truck/bike show with food trucks, eating contests, a burnout contest, beer and fireworks. $20-$25, 12 and younger free. 6-10 p.m. July 4. Lead Foot City, 17109 Old Ayers Road, Brooksville. 844-532-3366.
Fourth of July Safety Harbor Resort and Spa: This VIP party on the waterfront includes live music, a barbecue buffet, two hours of drinks and exclusive fireworks viewing. $99, $59 children. 6-10:30 p.m. July 4. Safety Harbor Resort and Spa, 105 N Bayshore Drive, Safety Harbor. 727-726-1161.
Fourth of July Rooftop Terrace Celebration: Feast on all-you-can-eat barbecue at this rooftop party with a great view of fireworks from the beaches. $35. 6 p.m. July 4. Fusion Resort, 290 107th Ave., Treasure Island. 727-300-6866.
Vista at the Top: Fourth of July: Enjoy live music as you sip a craft cocktail at this rooftop party with panoramic viewing of fireworks from downtown St. Petersburg and the beaches. Tables for four and eight available for reservation with fees credited back to food and drink purchases. $20. 7 p.m.-midnight. July 4. Tierra Verde Residence Inn, 214 Madonna Blvd., Tierra Verde. 727-864-4868.
Fourth of July Bar Free at Sea: Celebrate the stars and stripes on the water with a two-hour cruise including a dinner buffet, open bar, DJ dancing and a view of downtown Tampa’s fireworks set to music. $129.95, $89.95 ages 2-12, 1 and younger free. 7:30 p.m. July 4. Yacht StarShip, 603 Channelside Drive, Tampa. 813-223-7999.
Fourth of July Fireworks Pirate Cruise: Board the Lost Pearl for a 90-minute pirate-themed cruise with a view of downtown Tampa’s fireworks. Cash bar and snacks available. $75, 1 and younger free. 8:30-10 p.m. July 4. Tampa Convention Center, 333 S Franklin St., Tampa. 813-223-7999.
July 4th @ Whiskey North: Two separate VIP parties under one roof feature hip hop upstairs with Dizzy Vizions and reggaeton by Collazofam Entertainment. Hookah tables available for an additional charge. Women free until 1 a.m., $10-$20 others. 10 p.m.-3 a.m. July 4. Whiskey North, 11921 N Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa. 813-968-1515.
After the 4th Cleanup: Wear closed toe shoes and sunscreen as you join Keep Tampa Bay Beautiful to clean up the Courtney Campbell Causeway South Trail, Ben T. Davis Beach and Cypress Point Park. Free. 8-11 a.m. July 5. Courtney Campbell Causeway Trail, 8549-8597 Campbell Causeway Access Road S, Tampa. 813-221-8733.
NOTE: This article has been updated to correct that the Tampa Bay History Center will not be having costumed reenactors for July 4. The museum will be open however. ater St., Tampa. 813-228-0097.