Last year, the pandemic forced municipalities to either cancel or radically alter official festivities marking Independence Day. With most COVID-19 restrictions lifted and a vaccination drive in full swing, Tampa Bay area residents are looking forward to a more traditional Fourth of July, with a variety of celebrations planned.
Here are events where Tampa Bay residents can celebrate Independence Day.
Clearwater Celebrates America returns Sunday, July 4, at BayCare Ballpark, 601 Old Coachman Road, Clearwater.
The event kicks off at 7 p.m. and will conclude with a dazzling, music-choreographed fireworks show at 9:15 p.m. The annual fireworks display is temporarily relocating from its traditional venue at Coachman Park to BayCare Ballpark because of current Imagine Clearwater construction.
"No matter from what venue we launch fireworks, the American spirit will live on," said Mayor Frank Hibbard. "I'm excited that our community can come together again to celebrate Independence Day and honor all of the men and women who have contributed to our American democracy."
Attendees can celebrate America's birthday in style with the largest fireworks display in stadium history, a star-studded concert by the Black Honkeys Band and fun activities and giveaways for children of all ages. All-American culinary concessions, such as hamburgers, hot dogs and popcorn, will be available for purchase, as well as adult beverages.
Clearwater Celebrates America at the Ballpark is a ticketed event. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at BayCare Ballpark, by calling 727-712-7300 or online at bit.ly/ClearwaterCelebratesAmerica.
There are two ticket options: berm access or reserved seating. A berm ticket allows for access to activities on the concourse and standing room on both the berm and the field near the concert stage. A reserved seating ticket allows for access to activities on the concourse, a guaranteed seat throughout the night and no access to the berm or field. Parking is included.
Those planning to attend should purchase their tickets in advance because of anticipated demand and a limited number of tickets. The fireworks display is designed for attendees inside the stadium.
There are no alternative viewing locations.
Drivers are reminded to expect traffic delays near the stadium at southbound U.S. 19 and Drew Street.
For more information, visit MyClearwaterEvents.com.
The city of Dunedin has a number of activities planned around this year’s Independence Day celebration.
The Kiwanis Midnight Run is being offered both live and virtually this year. The virtual component will run June 24 through July 2. The live run will begin Saturday, July 3, 11:15 p.m., and will start and finish in front of Frenchy's Outpost Bar and Grill on Dunedin Causeway. For details, visit www.kiwanismidnightrun.com.
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Let Freedom Ride will be presented Saturday, July 3, 10 a.m. to noon. Participants will celebrate the holiday weekend by going for a bicycle ride and showing their patriotic spirit by wearing red, white and blue. Attendees are encouraged to decorate their bicycles with streamers, flags and anything else patriotic.
Those taking part will ride around town or along the Pinellas Trail. There are no fees, registration or staging area — simply head outside, go for a ride and show your spirit. Be sure to stop by the Dunedin History Museum for a special patriotic trinket from Dunedin Parks & Recreation. For more information, call Dunedin Parks & Recreation at 727-812-4530.
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The Pinellas Community Players will present a patriotic performance Saturday, July 3, 4 to 5:30 p.m., at John R. Lawrence Pioneer Park, 420 Main St., Dunedin.
This is a true "community" ensemble that has steadily grown over the past few years since 2018, thanks to the dedication of advanced players willing to help and encourage others, as well as beginners willing to learn how to get better. Led by Derek Currier, this intermediate instrumental ensemble gives adults the opportunity to recharge their love of performing, and ease back into sharing their love of live music.
The players have put together a special selection of patriotic songs and American music to celebrate America.
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Dunedin Goes Carting, a patriotic golf cart parade, will take place Saturday, July 3, with staging at VFW beginning at 3 p.m. The parade will get underway at 5:30 p.m.
For details, visit the Dunedin Goes Carting Facebook page.
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The city of Dunedin will present Hometown USA, a fireworks show with entertainment, Saturday, July 3, at TD Ballpark, 373 Douglas Ave., Dunedin.
Gates will open at 7 p.m. Fireworks will begin at approximately 9 p.m.
There will be free general admission seating, with grandstand seating only. There will be no access allowed on the field. Stadium concessions will be open. Various food items and beverages will be available for purchase. Free limited parking will be available at TD Ballpark, Dunedin Library and Hale Senior Activity Center.
For more information, call Dunedin Parks & Recreation at 727-812-4530.
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The Independence Day Rolling Parade will take place Sunday, July 4, beginning at 1 p.m.
The city of Dunedin Fire Department and Pinellas County Sheriff Community Police Unit will be driving around town, waving and running the sirens, wishing everyone a safe and happy holiday. To download the Rolling Parade Route, visit www.dunedingov.com/home/showpublisheddocument/19138.
The city of Largo’s Fourth of July Celebration will be Sunday, July 4, at Largo Central Park, 101 Central Park Drive, Largo.
The event will get underway at 7 p.m. Food and beverage vendors will be on-site. The playground will close at 8 p.m. to prepare for the fireworks show. Attendees may bring chairs and blankets. The fireworks display will begin at dusk.
Admission is free. Limited on-site parking will be available for $10. Pets, alcohol, tents, fireworks or sparklers will not be permitted in the park.
For more information, call 727-587-6740, ext. 5014.
Celebrate America! will get underway at 10 a.m. on Main Street at Philippe Parkway and will end at the American Legion, 900 Main St. The parade is sponsored by American Legion Auxiliary Unit 238. To enter a float in the parade, call 727-726-9601.
More than 40 participating organizations will take part in the parade, including several American Legion posts, Shriners, local businesses and organizations, along with antique and military vehicles, motorcycles, pipers, drummers, Santas and Star Wars stormtroopers. There will be a flyover by a U.S. Coast Guard airplane. The American Legion and Harbor Bar will be cooking hamburgers, hot dogs, wings, French fries and more during the parade.
The celebration will continue into the evening. There will be children’s activities, live entertainment and food vendors. The fireworks display will begin at 9 p.m.
St. Pete Beach
St. Pete Beach will host its annual fireworks display Sunday, July 4, beginning at 9 p.m. The display will be launched from Upham Beach, 6850 Beach Plaza, St. Pete Beach.
The north portion of the beach will be closed for the day. Attendees should note only the two southernmost beach walkways and south portion of Upham Beach will be open on the day of the fireworks, so space is limited. No pets, bonfires, alcohol, or glass containers are allowed on the beach at any time.
The city of St. Pete Beach will not be providing musical entertainment on July 4 but urges attendees to check with bars, hotels, and eating establishments directly to inquire about their live music schedule.
Residents and visitors should expect traffic delays and congestion in the area on July 4. There will be traffic pattern changes at the conclusion of the fireworks until traffic is cleared. All traffic leaving from the Pinellas County Parking Lot on Gulf Boulevard will be directed south (right). All other access points will not have restrictions and may go left or right onto Gulf Boulevard. Northbound lanes of Blind Pass Road will be closed at the conclusion fireworks and remain so until traffic has cleared. All traffic will be directed east on 75th Avenue over the Corey Avenue Causeway into Pasadena. Local traffic will be permitted to go north on Gulf Boulevard from 75th Avenue. No exit into Treasure Island will be permitted.
“We are so excited about this year’s display,” said St. Pete Beach Mayor Al Johnson. “It not only celebrates our nation’s birth but our heroic spirit as well after a difficult year. The beauty of our area and the reflection of the fireworks over the water is something many residents and visitors look forward to all year. We urge everyone attending to have fun and stay safe.”
Visit https://www.spbrec.com/603/4th-of-July-Fireworks for maps and FAQs.
The city of St. Petersburg recently announced that Fourth of July fireworks will return this year, continuing the tradition of enjoying fireworks along waterfront parks — now including the St. Pete Pier district.
Official event festivities will begin Friday, June 2, with music, food and a movie on the tilted lawn. The fun continues throughout the weekend with the 4K St. Pete Pier Run, Silent Disco Nights, Health Expo, food trucks and musical performances. The weekend of events concludes with the fireworks show along the downtown waterfront on Sunday, July 4, at 9 p.m.
The event is free and open to the public. Some vendors or activities may have participation or registration fees. Eventgoers are reminded to follow CDC guidelines for COVID-19 safety.
Residents and visitors are encouraged to utilize city parking facilities downtown or consider alternative modes of transportation. For information regarding the weekend of events, parking, and more, visit stpetepier.org/thefourth.
First Friday Seminole will celebrate American Friday, July 2, 6 to 9 p.m., on the main street in front of Studio Movie Grill at Seminole City Center, 11201 Park Blvd. N., Seminole.
Presented by Seminole City Center and the Rotary Club of Seminole Lake, event organizers will break out the red, white and blue in a star-studded celebration.
Each First Friday features the area’s best entertainment, complemented by a myriad of merchants, food and drink vendors, prize giveaways, and much more. Performing July 2 will be up-and-coming Nashville recording artist Angie Rey.
A powerful singer and artist, Rey’s mature sound and style, along with her soft tones and powerful delivery of a lyric, have her poised to appeal to a wide range of ages and genres. More recently, she has opened for various country stars like Scotty McCreery, Chase Bryant, Jerrod Niemann, John Michael Montgomery, and many others.
The city of Tarpon Springs will present the annual Fourth of July Picnic in the Park Sunday, July 4, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Craig Park, 100 Library Lane, Tarpon Springs.
The event returns in 2021 for the 13th time, after cancellation in 2020 due to the pandemic. This family-friendly celebration of our country’s independence is great fun for all ages. A live band will perform from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. Bring lawn chairs, swimsuits and towels and join friends and neighbors for a great time. The event will feature waterslides, food, drinks, a hot dog eating contest for ages 16 and older and much more.
The city of Tarpon Springs will present a Fourth of July Fireworks display just after sunset on Sunday, July 4. The best viewing area will be Fred Howard Park at 1700 Sunset Drive in Tarpon Springs. The park, beach and causeway will be open for parking to view this event. Parking is free after 6 p.m. Parking is limited.
After the park is full to capacity, the gates will be closed for safety. Please observe all of the county park rules and regulations. Alcoholic beverages and personal fireworks are not permitted in the park.
The fireworks will be launched from the city’s Sunset Beach. For setup and safety, Sunset Beach and the boat launch will be closed all day Sunday, July 4.
Celebrate America by watching the city of Treasure Island light up with spectacular fireworks on the beach. The celebration will be Sunday, July 4, starting at 9 p.m. Fireworks will be shot from the beach near Gulf Front Park, 10400 Gulf Blvd. Bring a beach chair or towel and enjoy the show as fireworks light up the night sky.
Those coming out to the fireworks show will be able to park in Treasure Island Park for a $20 flat-rate parking fee. Find a list of all metered parking lots by visiting mytreasureisland.com and by clicking on "Parking" in the main drop-down menu. The Treasure Island Police Department reminds residents and visitors to use crosswalks when crossing Gulf Boulevard or other busy roadways.
The rain date will be Monday, July 5. For information, call 727-547-4575, ext. 221 or 237, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The sixth annual Zephyrhills Summerfest 4th of July Celebration will take place Sunday, July 4, noon to 9:30 p.m., at Zephyr Lake Park, 38116 Fifth Ave., Zephyrhills.
The event will feature live entertainment, watermelon eating contests, a hot dog eating contest, kids dance-off, free giveaways and raffles. DJ Express will be on hand from noon to 5 p.m. Fast4Ward will take the stage from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Crossfire Creek will perform from 7:30 to 9 p.m.
Once the sun fully sets, there will be a 30-minute fireworks display over Zephyr Lake.
This event also includes a vendor market with hand-made home decor, soap, local cottage bakers, artisans, jewelers, and all sorts of fun patriotic items and glow toys. There will be bounce houses and waterslides with $5 bounce-all-day wristbands. Proceeds will benefit the local Samaritan Project.
Tampa Bay food trucks and dessert vendors will be on site with festival food for sale including cool treats, drinks and eats.
The city of Tampa is celebrating Independence Day the return of Boom by the Bay.
Mayor Jane Castor first sparked the tradition of Boom by the Bay in 2019 to create a festive atmosphere where neighbors across the city can come together to celebrate the 4th of July as a community. Over 200,000 people attended the inaugural event which featured Florida's largest Independence Day fireworks display.
Last year, the festival was canceled due to COVID-19, however, it's back and bigger than ever this year with more locations, fun, and fireworks along Tampa's waterfront.
The festivities will kick off on Sunday, July 4, 5 p.m., with a July 4th Boat Parade and Blessing of the Fleet presented by Friends of the Tampa Riverwalk. For information, visit thetampariverwalk.com/events-news/events/fourth-of-july-boat-parade.html.
Following the boat parade, Boom by the Bay programming will begin at 7 p.m. with family-friendly activities spanning six waterfront locations, including two new locations added this year. Each site will feature activities for all ages, food vendors, entertainment, and fireworks, which will be choreographed together and launched simultaneously at dusk, or approximately 9:15 p.m. The six locations this year include:
• Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park, presented by the Hard Rock
• Armature Works
• Tampa Convention Center
• Sparkman Wharf
• Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park, presented by the Tampa Downtown Partnership
• Bayshore Boulevard, presented by Coca-Cola Beverages Florida
The event is free and open to the public. Eventgoers are reminded to follow CDC guidelines for COVID-19 safety and take advantage of sanitation stations at each location. For information on transportation, FAQs, and more, visit boombythebay.com.
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Celebrate America’s birthday aboard the WWII American Victory Ship, Tampa’s No. 1 patriotic attraction.
Freedom Fest will provide attendees with a star-spangled view of Tampa’s Boom by the Bay Fireworks and July 4 Boat Parade and Blessing of the Fleet.
The boat parade is scheduled to arrive alongside at 6:30 p.m. Boats will be decorated in colorful flags and prizes are given to the most patriotic. Tampa’s Boom by the Bay fireworks are scheduled for 9:15 p.m., but may be adjusted due to weather concerns.
From 6 to 9:15 p.m., attendees may enjoy adult refreshments provided by Spunky Spirits and festive food trucks. Activities will include a Kids Zone, musical entertainment from DJ Reko, festive characters, All-American photo ops, dancing, and games. A silent auction with military collectibles and Champa Bay sports memorabilia will be available to bid on.
No outside food or beverages are allowed on board. This event is predominantly outside. Attendees are encouraged to follow CDC best practices and utilize sanitation stations located throughout the venue.
Tickets are $14 for adults; $7 for children 4-12; $11 for military, veteran, and first responders. Ages 3 and younger will be admitted for free. Admission does not include food and beverages. To purchase tickets, visit Eventbrite.
The ship is in the Water Street District, directly behind the Florida Aquarium. For information, visit www.americanvictory.org.