Happy Birthday America!
Huge celebrations are planned throughout the Gulf Coast over the July 4th Holiday Weekend. Various events are described as being star spangled spectaculars with special fireworks extravaganzas! They cover a broad spectrum ranging from old fashioned, Norman Rockwell type events to completely choreographed, state of the art, musical fireworks presentations. What better way to spend your Gulf Coast Vacation than catching fireworks down by the beach?
Red, White, and Blue Celebration at Harborwalk
Harborwalk Village in Destin plans an early start to America's Birthday on Thursday, July 1st honoring local heroes in the military who have gone “above and beyond the call of duty.” This event goes from 7pm to 9pm and will include an award ceremony complete with a World War II replica fly-over salute and live music. The ceremony will end with a special preview fireworks show over the Destin Harbor.
On Sunday, July 4th there will be free, live entertainment starting at 2pm. In addition to shopping and restaurant venues a number of family activities will be provided. These include children's craft shops, washable face and body painting, games and prizes. After a spectacular sunset over the Destin Harbor, the grand finale starts at 8:30 pm with a fantastic, twenty-one minute fireworks display accompanied by patriotic July 4th music.
Red, White, and Baytowne
The Village of Baytowne Wharf on the Sandestin Resort in Miramar Beach kicks the weekend off on Saturday, July 3rd with lots of kid's activities, arts and crafts, face painting, balloon sculpting and a giant costumed stilt walker. Be sure to check out the sunset, which now sets over the Bay, from the marina wharf while you're here. There will be a live concert around the Green at the band shell with entertainment provided by “Coconut Radio” from 6pm to 9pm. This concert will lead into the Fireworks Celebration over the Bay with a wide assortment of exciting, pre-recorded music played simultaneously. On the beachside, the Sandestin Resort will be shooting off fireworks over the beach.
Stars and Stripes Celebration at Seaside
An old fashioned, nostalgic visit to Seaside starts on July 4th with a Patriotic Parade at 8am. The parade route starts at Seagrove Beach and travels through the Beaches of South Walton down Scenic 30A into the heart of Seaside. Costumed participants, decorated floats and Patriotic Pets will be judged by a special panel who will give out awards for the best entries on the Amphitheatre Green. Music afterwards will be provided by 30A Radio with a Watermelon Eating Contest and other fun festivities. You may spend the afternoon exploring all the unique shops, getting an ice cream cone, enjoying a good meal or drinking some cold beverages.
At 7pm the Stars and Stripes Celebration goes into full gear at the Amphitheatre with a free, live concert by the locally celebrated band, “Dred Clampett.” They will be joined by the Grammy award winning and world renowned mandolin player, Sam Bush. The group will provide a variety of eclectic music ranging from Bluegrass to Blues, Rock n Roll to Jazz and even some Louisiana Bayou music thrown in for a memorable experience. At 9pm the July 4th Fireworks Show Spectacular begins complete with a choreographed musical celebration which will be simulcast on 30A radio, at 107.1 FM in case you want to tune in on your own stereo speakers.
Rosemary Beach Family Day
Rosemary Beach, the charming Dutch Indies, colonial styled village at the very end of Scenic 30A will be hosting a Fun Family Day. July 4th starts at 7:30am around their expansive green town promenade and park. A Patriotic Bike decorating contest will be open to all with a Bike Parade around the village starting at 8:45am. Prizes will be awarded to participants for Most Original Design, Most Patriotic, Best Bike by Kids under 6, Best Family Entry, and Best Overall.
This will be followed by a July 4th Family Field Day on the grass from 9am to 11am. It will include fun, old fashioned contests for a three legged race, hula hoops, a balloon toss, music & more. A town Barb-B-Que is planned around the plaza from 5pm to 7pm.
Star Spangled Spectacular at Pier Park
The recently completed Pier Park in Panama City Beach will be celebrating their third annual Celebration for July 4th which begins at 5pm. The mayor will preside over a special Color Guard Presentation of the Flag, a Pledge of Allegiance, the National Anthem and an exciting F-15 Fighter plane flyover. Live music will be provided at various sites and restaurants with games and activities for children of all ages. The free main concert begins at 8pm concluding with a Star Spangled Spectacular of awesome July 4th fireworks.
If your plans for 4th of July bring you to Destin, the Beaches of South Walton, or Panama City Beach, you will be sure to have a memorable vacation. Ocean Reef provides vacation rentals along the Gulf Coast and invites you to spend the 4th of July holiday down at the beach.