The Perfect Fourth of July in North Carolina

Land of the free and home of the brave, towns in North Carolina sure know how to celebrate independence in this beautiful nation! From fireworks, to parades, the celebrations are a-plenty. If you are in need of a location to sport your red, white and blue and show off your pride for America, here’s how to have the perfect Fourth of July in North Carolina! 

1. Fourth of July Weekend at the Ballantyne, Charlotte, NC

A weekend of celebration beginning June 29 and lasting through July 1, join the Ballantyne Hotel community for various patriotic events and activities. Afternoon cookouts on the weekend, live music, lawn games, and drink specials at the pool will have all hotel guests buzzing about this revolutionary holiday weekend. With other events open to the public such as a Whiskey Club experience for $65 a head, and their participation in Charlotte Restaurant Week until July 29, there is so much to experience here. Don’t forget to wear your red, white, and blue!

2. Festival Parade, Southport, NC

The Festival Parade has been in production since 1972. Opening Ceremony is on Sunday June 24 and goes all the way until July 4—which surely ends with a bang: fireworks galore at 9 p.m. at the Southport Waterfront. So many activities unfold throughout the town: a famous parade, classic car shows, old jail tours, arts & crafts, art shows, a salute to veterans and so much more will be on your agenda for the week. Various live musical performances will be the sound ringing in your ears during all of these festivities. Don’t forget to check out Waterfront Park Area and Franklin Square for all of the food and drink vendors.

3. Lake Junaluska Fourth of July Parade & Picnic, Lake Junaluska, NC

Lake Junaluska is throwing a weekend celebration from July 2 until July 4 that you will not want to miss. On Wednesday the Fourth of July parade begins at 11 a.m. with a new theme this year: “Red, White and Bluegrass: Music of the Mountains.” Following the parade will be the Fourth of July Picnic at the Nanci Weldon Memorial Gym. Family activities will be available to participate in during the picnic. If you are looking for a restaurant dining experience, some excellent nearby eats include The Buttered Biscuit, and Ammons’ Drive Inn and Dairy Bar.

4. Tweetsie Railroad Fireworks Extravaganza, Blowing Rock, NC

Deemed “one of the most popular events in the mountains,” Tweetsie Railroad Fireworks Extravaganza of Blowing Rock will make it an evening to remember. After the park closes, the fireworks are set to start at 9:30 p.m. Parking is free to all patrons this year. For a more exclusive event, a VIP Fireworks viewing and all-you-can-eat buffet is available at $20 for adults and $15 for children. Guests will be able to dine and enjoy a chicken and barbecue buffet and when the show begins, view the fireworks in the Hacienda. For those who would like to grab a bite before or after, The Rock Sports Bar & Grill , Coyote Kitchen, Taste Grill, and the Appalachian Mountain Brewery are all fantastic recommendationsin the area. 

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5. Freedom Fest, Bryson City, NC

Freedom Fest of Bryson City, North Carolina, is a full day of celebration. Enjoy firecrackers, a 5K, foods, family-friendly games and activities, live entertainment and as the finale, “one of the most spectacular fireworks shows in the Smokies.” Do not forget your furry companion and participate in the Riverfront Park’s “Strut Your Mutt”—where dogs are given awards! Freedom Fest lives up to USA Today’s recent rave as “one of nine small towns that go all out for the Fourth of July.” Stop into one of the many restaurants nearby for delicious food and beverages, such as Anthony’s Italian Pizza & Pasta, Everett Street Diner, Box Car Café & Cones, or the The High Test Deli & Sweet Shop.

6. Downtown Asheville Independence Day Celebration, Asheville, NC

Beginning at the Pack Square Park at 2 p.m. on July 4, there will be family friendly activities open until 6 p.m., and live music at 4 p.m. The beautiful fireworks show begins at 9:30 p.m. so do not forget your cozy blanket or chair to set up! Food trucks will be on site or you can stop in one of the many restaurants nearby: Wicked Weed Brewing, Carmel’s Kitchen & Bar, Bouchon , The Blackbird Restaurant, and Buxton Hall Barbecue, just to name a few.

7. Fun Fourth Festival, Greensboro, NC

Starting off the Fourth of July celebrations with high energy, July 3 will be kicking off the Freedom Run 5K, 10K, and Firecracker Road Race as well as the famous American Block Party starting at 7 p.m. and going on all the way until 11 p.m. The next day on July 4, the Fun Fourth festivities are known to be the “biggest 4th of July festival in North Carolina.” The day will be packed full with a street fair, live entertainment, food, games, activities, and a spectacular show of fireworks along with a Fireworks Concert. Fill your belly with one of the many recommended sit-down restaurant options in the area: The Acropolis Restaurant, B. Christopher’s Steakhouse, Hop’s Burger BarVillage Kitchen, and many more.

8. Fireworks in Sylva, Sylva, NC

From 6:30 p.m. until dark, enjoy food and beverages, family friendly activities, and a free live performance at the Bridge Park gazebo. Crocodile Smile, a Rock/R&B band, will be playing from 6:30 p.m. until 9:30 p.m. Right after the concert, enjoy the fireworks show with your loved ones. Fancy a bite to eat? There are several nearby businesses to enjoy a restaurant dining experience including City Lights Café, Innovation Brewing, and Lulu’s on Main just to name a few! Grab a drink, and celebrate Independence Day the right way.

9. Mr. Roberts and Fireworks, Wilmington, NC

Taking dinner and a show to a whole new level, the Battleship of Wilmington, North Carolina, will be collaborating with theatre production company Thalian Association Community Theatre to put on Mr. Roberts, a drama to be performed on the fantail of the battleship beginning at 8 p.m. on the Fourth of July. Ticket prices to view the performance run from $15 for children, local residents, active military, and seniors to $50 for adult. Tickets for the Fourth of July include refreshments and fireworks. The gorgeous fireworks display will begin after the show atroughly 9 p.m. For before or after the show, Wilmington has endless eatery options to satisfy your hunger. A few near the battleship include Front Street Brewery, The Basics, Pilot House Restaurant , and many more.

10. Summerfest: Independence Day, Koka Booth Amphitheatre, Cary, NC

An afternoon of fun, celebration and music to your ears, Koka Booth Amphitheatre is a magnificent place to spend your Independence Day. Arrive at 3 p.m. and the gates are open to lay out your picnic blankets and chairs on the lawn. Enjoy everything from a scavenger hunt to the Ferris wheel overlooking the lake. Food eating contests (watermelon and ice cream), and cornhole contests will commence later in the day.The live entertainment will begin at 5:45 p.m. on the Koka Booth Main Stage. The Cary Town Band will take the stage first and then at 7:30, the North Carolina Symphony. Fireworks will be set off after the North Carolina Symphony ends. If you would like reserved seating at the theater, tickets can be purchased at the box office or online. 

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