TAMPA - July is the perfect time of year to start up the grills, throw on a bathing suit and celebrate our country's birthday.
Independence Day is a fun, family-friendly celebratory holiday that leaves everyone wondering how they should celebrate this glorious day.
Luckily, there are firework shows, parades and performances all over the Tampa Bay area for everyone.
Thursday, July 4th
Brandon Blast starts at 5:00 p.m. at Brandon Westfield Town Center Mall. Live music, bouncie house fun, face painting, video game theatre, & magic shows. Fireworks at 9:00 p.m.
The Mostly Pops Orchestra with John and Mary K Wilson is scheduled from 7:00 to 9:30 p.m. in Coachman Park located at 301 Drew Street. The concert will be followed by a fireworks display at 9:30 p.m.
Kids can join Radio Disney at Natalie's Juice Kid's Zone from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. There will be mascots, games, performers, parades and more. Gates open at 4:00 p.m. The event is free.
Dunedin hosts a fireworks show following the Dunedin Blue Jays game at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium. The ball game begins at 4:15 p.m. The Greg Billing Band will perform a concert. The fireworks show is scheduled for 9:30 p.m. Admission is free.
The City of Gulfport will hold a Fourth of July Celebration at the Gulfport Beach Waterfront Complex starting at 8:00 a.m. The fireworks display will take place at 9:00 p.m. Admission is free.
The city of Largo will try to break the world record for the greatest number of people doing the "twist" at the same time ($3 charge). Dancing starts at 6 p.m. at Largo Central Park, 101 Central Park Drive. Free admission to park. No pets, sparklers or personal fireworks allowed in the park. Fireworks at 9 p.m.
Madeira Beach will host an all-day Fourth of July Celebration at Archibald Beach. The beach party includes live music, food vendors, and beer tents. A fireworks show will occur at 9:00 p.m.
The Double Barrel Band and Highway 41 South are performing in the Plant City Stadium at 1810 East Park Road. The National Anthem will then be played at 9:00 p.m. Following that a fireworks show is planned for 9:15 p.m. Parking lot gates open at 5:45 p.m. The stadium gates open at 6:00 p.m. Admission is free but parking is $5 a vehicle.
Fireworks scheduled for 9:00 p.m. will be launched from a barge in Miller's Bayou. Waterfront Park at 8119 Old Post Rd. is one of the best spots in the city to view the fireworks. The park will open at 5:00 p.m., and alcoholic beverages are not permitted in city parks.
The City of Safety Harbor will hold a free Fourth of July celebration beginning at 5:00 p.m. at the Safety Harbor Marina at 200 Bayshore Boulevard. There will be live entertainment, food vendors and family activities. A fireworks display will take place after dusk.
Marina Jack will host their annual Sarasota Bayfront Fireworks Spectacular in Island Park. The fireworks show occurs from 9:00 to 9:30 p.m. It is the region's largest firework show. Marina Jack, Island Park, and O'Leary's Tiki Bar & Grill are the best spots for viewing the display.
The 23rd annual 4th of July Fireworks Celebration at Siesta Key Beach will conclude with a 25-minute fireworks show from 9:15 to 10:00 p.m. The Siesta Key Public Beach is located at 948 Beach Road in Sarasota. The fireworks can be seen from the Gulf, Intercoastal and south Siesta Beach.
ST. PETE BEACH
The City of St. Pete Beach will hold a fireworks display on the beach. The Upham Beach entrances will be closed to the public starting at 6:00 p.m. The fireworks display will occur shortly after 8:30 p.m. For more information, call (727) 367-2735.
A fireworks show is scheduled to begin at 9:00 p.m., if the weather permits. The display can be seen all along the waterfront with viewing from Vinoy, Albert Whitted and North Straub Parks. Note: Depending on weather conditions the fireworks display can start as early as 8:30 p.m. or
as late as 10 p.m.
Channelside Bay Plaza in downtown Tampa will have live entertainment from the Boat House Bar from 4:00 to 11:00 p.m. A fireworks show will begin at 9:00 p.m.
The City of Tarpon Springs will hold a Fourth of July Celebration with a Patriotic Picnic in Craig Park from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. A fireworks show will take place after dusk at Sunset Beach. If rain cancels show on the 4th, fireworks will take place on the 5th.
The Temple Terrace Chamber of Commerce is holding a 4th of July Celebration at the Temple Terrace Golf & County Club. The fireworks display begins at 9:00 p.m. There will be music and other festivities starting at 7:00 p.m. A parade will be held earlier in the day starting at 10:00 a.m. at Greco Middle School.
It's a Freedom Thing Celebration at the beach behind Sloppy Joe's, 104th Avenue and Gulf Boulevard starts at noon with music, family activities, food vendors. Fireworks scheduled for 9 p.m. Free admission, cost for parking. For information, call 360-4121.
The Sertoma Club of Venice will hold their fireworks show on Venice Beach from 9:00 to 10:00 p.m. The fireworks will go off at the south Jetty and can be seen along Venice Beach, Nokomis and from the water. For more details, visit www.venicegov.com .