Every July 4, America celebrates the ratification of the Declaration of Independence and separation of the 13 original colonies from British rule with parades, pyrotechnics and other parties. If you're looking to get your Fourth of July fix — and see some colorful explosions in the sky — here are some suggestions taking place throughout the weekend and on July 4 itself.
Northside Fourth of July Parade and Rock N’ Roll Carnival — The Northside Fourth of July parade returns after a two-year hiatus, celebrating Independence Day with an over-the-top and colorful procession down Hamilton Avenue. The parade, which originally launched in 1852, will begin at noon on July 4, showcasing eye-catching handmade floats crafted by local organizations. It is the centerpiece of the weekend-long Northside Rock N' Roll Carnival, which includes local music, local food and local beer at Hoffner Park. Rock N’ Roll Carnival 3 p.m.-1 a.m. July 2 and July 3; 11 a.m.-6 p.m. July 4. Parade at noon July 4. Free. Hoffner Park, 4101 Hamilton Ave., Northside, northsidejuly4.com, northsiderocks.com.
Madeira Independence Day Parade and Celebration — Madeira hosts an Independence Day party on July 2, starting with a pre-party at McDonald Commons at 3 p.m., featuring a watermelon-eating contest and other games. The Madeira Mile race starts at 4:30 p.m. at Madeira Presbyterian Church. A parade follows at 5 p.m., stepping off from Madeira High School. Food trucks, live music from Hey Mona and HighGrain Brewing beer take over the park afterward. A fireworks display closes out the night at 10 p.m. 3-10 p.m. July 4. Free. McDonald Commons, 7451 Dawson Road, Madeira, madeiracity.com.
Coney Island Balloon Glow — The grounds of Coney Island will light up with illuminated hot air balloons during the 22nd Balloon Glow. Sunlite Pool opens at 10 a.m., with an inflatable obstacle course available 3-9 p.m. Starting at 8 p.m., dozens of tethered hot air balloons will be set aglow, with a Rozzi’s Fireworks show over Lake Como at 10:15 p.m. 10 a.m.-10: 15 p.m. July 3. $20 before 2 p.m.; $25 after 2 p.m.; $10 walk-up. Coney Island, 6201 Kellogg Ave., California, coneyislandpark.com.
Fairfield’s Red, White and KaBOOM — Fairfield's Harbin Park closes to vehicular traffic at dusk for the city’s annual fireworks show from Rozzi Fireworks at 10 p.m. The soccer lot will be open to pedestrians to set up shop to watch, but the city of Fairfield says the display should be visible across the neighborhood. A soundtrack to the show will play at 92.9 FM. Fireworks at dusk July 3. Free. Harbin Park, 1300 Hunter Road, Fairfield, fairfield-city.org.
Taps, Tastes and Tunes Festival at Voice of America Park — From July 1-3, Voice of America Park will host the fifth annual Taps, Tastes and Tunes Festival at the National VOA Museum of Broadcasting. Food, drinks, music and activities will occur during the Fourth of July weekend, with fireworks at 10 p.m. on July 3. Spin Doctors headline the concert stage at 8 p.m. July 3. 5-11 p.m. July 1; noon-11 p.m. July 2; noon-10 p.m. July 3. Free. Voice of America Park, 8070 Tylersville Road, West Chester, thingstodocincinnati.com.
Independence Day Fireworks at Kings Island — Kings Island’s new, nightly “Fun, Fireworks and Fifty - a Kings Island Nighttime Spectacular” anniversary fireworks show will celebrate Independence Day with extended hours. The park will remain open after the celebration until midnight. The show features everything from drones and lasers to fireworks and a story narrated by The Brady Bunch’s Greg Williams (aka Greg Brady). Fireworks at 10 p.m. July 3. Daily admission starts at $49.99. Kings Island, 6300 Kings Island Drive, Mason, visitkingsisland.com.
Sparks in the Park at Milford — Celebrate Independence Day in Milford on July 3 at Riverside Ballfield. The American Legion will be serving up alcoholic beverages, while Kona Ice and Johnny’s Creamy Whip provide the treats. Street Fried food truck will also be on hand. Live music from Sean Riley and the Billy Rock Band will entertain before the night ends with Rozzi’s Fireworks at 10 p.m. 7-10 p.m. July 3. Free. Riverside Ballfield, 100 Race St., Milford, milfordohio.org.
Fourth of July Spectacular in Colerain — Colerain hosts its Fourth of July Spectacular on July 3, with celebrations beginning at 7 p.m. There will be food trucks, family-friendly activities and live entertainment. Fireworks begin at 10 p.m. 7-10 p.m. July 3. Free. Drew Campbell Memorial Commons, 4160 Springdale Road, Colerain, facebook.com.
Mount Healthy 3rd of July — Head to Mt. Healthy City Park for a Fourth of July party on July 3 featuring an ice cream social, live music from Michelle Robinson and fireworks at dusk. 6 p.m.-dusk July 3. Free. Mt. Healthy City Park, 1541 Hill Ave., Mount Healthy, facebook.com.
Red, White and Boom with the Cincinnati Pops— The Cincinnati Pops will perform a concert full of American favorites in celebration of the Fourth of July. Fireworks will follow the concert. 8 p.m. July 4. Tickets start at $15; $5 for active and retired military; free lawn tickets for those 17 and under. Riverbend Music Center, 6295 Kellogg Ave., California, cincinnatisymphony.org.
Edgewood Fourth of July Extravaganza — Edgewood’s 44th-annual Fourth of July party features a 5K race at 7:30 a.m., followed by a parade with awards. A free concert starts at 7:30 p.m. in Freedom Park before fireworks begin at 9:45 p.m. Festivities begin at 7:30 a.m. on July 4. Free. Freedom Park, 550 Freedom Park Drive, Edgewood, edgewoodky.gov.
Red, White and Blue Ash at Summit Park — Blue Ash hosts its annual Fourth of July festival featuring Gavin DeGraw as headliner, with Cincinnati’s own Blessid Union of Souls as opener. But there's more than music at this celebration. The day will be full of rides, wandering entertainment and food and drink vendors. At 10 p.m., Arthur Rozzi Pyrotechnics caps off the evening and will "delight audiences by lighting up the night sky and the Observation Tower with the region’s biggest and best fireworks show," set to music from WARM 98.5. Concert begins at 6 p.m. July 4. Free. Summit Park, 4335 Glendale Milford Road, Blue Ash, blueashevents.com.
Fourth of July Celebration Washington Park — Head to Washington Park for kids’ activities, games, local eats and a fireworks show after sunset. 4-10 p.m. July 4. Free. Washington Park, 1230 Elm St., Over-the-Rhine, washingtonpark.org.
Fireworks at Ault Park — Ault Park Advisory Council celebrates Independence Day with its 56th-annual fireworks show. The event kicks off with a children’s parade and contest in the morning, followed by a day filled with food trucks and live music. A Rozzi’s Fireworks show ends the night at 10 p.m. 11 a.m.-11 p.m. July 4. Free. Ault Park, 5090 Observatory Circle, Hyde Park, aultparkac.org.
Independence Day Post-Game Fireworks with the Cincinnati Reds — If you’re a baseball lover and are looking for something fun to do on the Fourth of July, watch the Reds face off against the New York Mets at Great American Ball Park. Enjoy a special Fourth of July fireworks show from your seat, beginning approximately 15 minutes after the conclusion of the game. 6:40 p.m. game July 4. Tickets start at $12. Great American Ball Park, 100 Joe Nuxhall Way, Downtown, mlb.com.
Montgomery Independence Day Parade & Festival — This family-friendly Fourth of July festival features a parade, with awards for Best Patriotic Spirit, Best Float/Vehicle, Best Overall and Best Neighborhood. After the procession, head to Montgomery Park for games, food and live entertainment. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. July 4. Free. Montgomery Park, 10101 Montgomery Road, Montgomery, montgomeryohio.gov.
Wyoming July 4 Festivities — Wyoming kicks off the Fourth of July with a themed parade honoring "American Heroes." Everyone is welcome to register starting at 9 a.m., with an awards ceremony and live music after at the gazebo on Wyoming Avenue. From noon-5 p.m., there will be free entry at the Wyoming Family Aquatic Center. Oak Park turns into the celebration hub at 5:30 p.m. with inflatables, games, food, live music and a Rozzi's Fireworks display at 9:45 p.m. 9 a.m.-9:45 p.m. July 4. Rain date is July 5. Free. Oak Park, 878 Oak Ave., Wyoming, wyomingohio.gov.
Harrison Fourth of July Parade and Fireworks — Harrison's Fourth of July parade will take to the streets at 4 p.m., stepping off from the Harrison Community Center. A party follows at 5 p.m. with food, drinks, family-friendly activities (stilt walkers, magicians, face painters, etc.) and live music. There will be a cornhole tournament at 6 p.m. and a fireworks show at dusk. 4 p.m.-dusk July 4. Free. Harrison Community Center, 300 George St., Harrison, harrisonohio.gov.
Fort Mitchell Independence Day Parade — The annual Fort Mitchell parade features the Vent Haven Museum as Grand Marshal, and a theme "Lend a Helping Hand." The parade steps off from the DCCH Center Fairgrounds on Dixie Highway. 12:30 p.m. July 4. Free. Dixie Highway, Fort Mitchell, facebook.com.
Stricker's Grove Fourth of July — The private Stricker's Grove amusement park only opens to the public a handful of times each year, including on the Fourth of July. Enjoy carnival-style rides, games and a fireworks display at dark. Get an arm band for unlimited rides ($20) or purchase ride ticket packages. Bring your own food or buy food and drink there, including alcohol. 3-11 p.m. July 4. Free admission; $5 parking before 6 p.m.; $10 parking after 6 p.m. Stricker's Grove, 11490 Hamilton-Cleves Road, Hamilton, strickersgrove.com.
The Littlefield — The Northside bourbon bar and bistro celebrates its 8th anniversary with a themed party. There will be a special barbecue menu, a bourbon raffle to benefit Visionaries & Voices, a hot dog-eating contest and a Liberty Bird drink of the month to benefit Girls on the Run. Doors open at 11 a.m. July 4. Free. The Littlefield, 3930 Spring Grove Ave., Northside, littlefieldns.com.
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