July 4th in California is a time for celebration, and the Golden State offers a diverse array of ways to mark the occasion. In some regions, you can witness classic parades and commemorate Independence Day with centuries-old traditions. In contrast, in others, quirky events like worm races and anvil firings add a unique flair


Here’s a guide to some of the best July 4th events across California, spanning from Thursday through the weekend:

Dazzling Fireworks Displays
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Dazzling Fireworks Displays

In San Francisco, the official July 4th fireworks kick off at Pier 39 at 9:30 PM, with Fisherman’s Wharf offering the prime vantage point. Meanwhile, South Lake Tahoe hosts a spectacular fireworks show synchronized to music, visible throughout the city. Nearby in Tahoe City, don’t miss the eco-friendly display featuring 300 drones—the largest of its kind—hovering over the lake.

Los Angeles County boasts one of the region’s largest displays at Marina del Rey. The evening begins with a concert at Burton Chace Park and culminates in a breathtaking fireworks extravaganza at 9 p.m. Down south in Orange County, catch the Newport Beach Fireworks Extravaganza lighting up Back Bay, or head to San Diego County for the Big Bay Boom—a meticulously coordinated show visible from downtown, Shelter Island, and Seaport Village.

Los Angeles County boasts one of the region's largest displays at Marina del Rey.

Theme Parks

Every evening, Disneyland Resort dazzles visitors with fireworks, but on July 4th, patriotic melodies accompany these displays. Knott’s Berry Farm and Universal Studios Hollywood also offer special fireworks shows, while Six Flags Magic Mountain and Six Flags Discovery Kingdom treat guests to nightly displays from July 4-6.

In San Diego County, LEGOLAND California hosts its annual Red, White & Boom celebration, featuring festivities themed around the nation’s birthday. Nearby, SeaWorld San Diego lights up the sky with live music and fireworks as part of its Summer Spectacular series.

The holidays below are listed from north to south:

Holiday by the Lighthouse, Crescent City

In Del Norte County, Crescent City hosts the North Coast’s largest fireworks display, lighting up the sky over the Battery Point Lighthouse. The festivities include a parade, sandcastle-building contests, a fun run, live music, and a beer garden at Beach Front Park.

Fireworks and Anvil Firing, Weaverville

Weaverville in Trinity County offers a quintessential Americana experience with its historic district, which includes a museum, an old blacksmith shop, a stamp mill, and a sawmill. From July 3–5, enjoy a fun run, barrel racing, a bull-riding championship, and fireworks. On the 4th, witness the unique anvil firing event at 6 a.m., followed by a pancake breakfast and a parade.

Fireworks and Auto Races, Lassen County

Fireworks and Auto Races, Lassen County

In the Shasta Cascade region, Lassen County celebrates with auto races at the Lassen County Fairgrounds in Susanville, followed by a spectacular fireworks display. Later in the month, the annual Lassen County Fair runs from July 17–21.

Early Celebrations on July 3, Colfax

Colfax in Placer County kicks off the celebrations early on July 3 with a car show, a petting zoo, and evening fireworks. Extend your festivities by visiting nearby Roseville and Lincoln for their fireworks displays on the Fourth.

Three Nights of Fireworks, Lake County

Lake County’s festivities span three nights, featuring fireworks over Clear Lake, California’s largest freshwater lake. On July 4, the fireworks display will light up the sky near Lakeport. On July 5, the pyrotechnic show continues at Konocti Vista Casino and Resort and Clearlake Oaks. The celebrations conclude on July 6 with the 66th Annual Redbud Parade, the 55th Annual International Worm Race & Festival, and a final fireworks display in Clearlake.

Lake County's festivities span three nights, featuring fireworks over Clear Lake, California’s largest freshwater lake

Rodeo and Festivities, Rancho Cordova

Rancho Cordova’s Hagan Park is the place to be on July 3–4, with two days of road racing, carnival rides, a beer garden, and live music, all culminating in a spectacular fireworks show on the 4th. Extend your celebrations by heading to nearby Folsom for the Folsom Pro Rodeo from July 3–5, featuring thrilling events like painted ladies, flying cowboys, and mutton busting.

Food Trucks and Festivities, Vacaville

Vacaville in Solano County hosts its annual celebration at Andrews Park. Enjoy a diverse selection of food trucks, let the kids play on the hilltop Great Wonders playground, and enjoy live music from a “top secret band” before the evening’s fireworks display.

Historic Celebration, Bridgeport

Bridgeport in Mono County has a rich tradition of Independence Day celebrations, dating back to 1862. This year’s four-day event (July 3-6) features a fun run, watermelon-eating contests, and a parade highlighting local culture, including the Bridgeport Paiute Tribe. The night sky will be illuminated with fireworks reflecting off Bridgeport Reservoir and the High Sierra mountains.

Bridgeport in Mono County has a rich tradition of Independence Day celebrations, dating back to 1862

Gold Rush-Themed Fourth, Columbia

Celebrate July Fourth at Columbia State Historic Park in Tuolumne County, a preserved Gold Rush town. The day starts with a Black Powder Musket Salute and a concert, followed by family-friendly contests such as watermelon-eating and nail-pounding competitions, a cake walk, and a greased-pole climb.

Celebrate July Fourth at Columbia State Historic Park in Tuolumne County

Baseball and Natural Wonders, Visalia

Nestled in the Central Valley, Visalia serves as a perfect gateway to the majestic Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks, where you can marvel at the General Sherman Tree. Enhance your Fourth of July experience by attending the baseball game and fireworks display hosted by the Visalia Rawhide.

Nestled in the Central Valley, Visalia serves as a perfect gateway to the majestic Sequoia

Patriotic Ferris Wheel, Santa Monica

The iconic Ferris wheel at Pacific Park in Santa Monica is a sight to behold. On July 4, this solar-powered marvel illuminates the night with a dazzling display of red, white, and blue lights, creating intricate patterns and transitions. One standout feature to watch for is the animated, 130-foot-tall American flag waving proudly in the night sky.

Oceanic Fireworks and Whale Watching, Dana Point

Oceanic Fireworks and Whale Watching, Dana Point

Dana Point’s Doheny State Beach is renowned for whale watching year-round, but on the Fourth of July, it also becomes a prime spot for fireworks. Spectacular views can be enjoyed from Dana Point Harbor or the scenic cliffs of Lantern Bay Park. Consider booking a cruise or safari to witness the fireworks display from the water.

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