Celebrate the Fourth of July with 10 dazzling fireworks displays

Images courtesy of Carmichael Recreation and Park District, El Dorado County Fair and the Sacramento River Cats
From fun runs to baseball field festivals and fireworks spectaculars, here are 10 great ways to celebrate Independence Day.

Be proud to be an American: We’ve got the scoop on 10 ways to celebrate the Fourth of July, with fireworks, food and old fashioned family fun. Don your stars and stripes and check out these Independence Day events throughout the Sacramento region.  

Cal Expo
July 4
For more than 20 years, Cal Expo has boasted the biggest 4th of July display of fireworks in the Sacramento region, and this year is no different. In partnership with the City and County of Sacramento, Cal Expo will light up the sky with a massive fireworks display starting at 9:30 p.m. The Sacramento-based country rock quintet The Cripple Creek band, rock cover band Radio Billionaires and folk singer-songwriter Hannah Jane Kile will regale the crowd with their music as a warm-up to the main event. Free ($10 for parking). 5 p.m. Cal Expo. 1600 Exposition Blvd. 263-3247. calexpo.com

Raley Field
July 4

The Fourth on the Field event invades Raley Field for the third year in a row for a full-on food truck bonanza. More than 20 wheeling kitchens will be selling their tasty wares, including Krush Burger, Chando’s Tacos, Gyro Stop and Granola Girl Food Truck. Cover band Nunchuck Taylor will keep the party going, while River Cats emcee Mike on the Mic facilitates vintage fun with hot dog eating, push up contests and potato sack races. Youngsters can hang out in the Kid’s Corner, where they can color, make a balloon friend and get their faces painted, and adults can take advantage of the Solon Club ($15), which will have cocktails, eats by Broderick Roadhouse, corn hole, darts and a ping pong table. The pyrotechnics start at 9:30 p.m. $10; $5 for children 12 and under; $15 for Solon Club. Event starts at 6 p.m. Raley Field. 400 Ballpark Dr. West Sacramento. raleyfield.com

July 4

Start your Independence Day off bright and early at 7 a.m. with a pancake breakfast at the Carmichael Park Clubhouse before finding the perfect spot on Fair Oaks Boulevard to watch the parade portion of the 57th annual 4th of July Pancakes & Parade and Fireworks show, replete with colorful floats, uniformed law enforcement, vintage cars and participants dressed as historic icons like George Washington and the Statue of Liberty as tributes to this year’s theme, “Salute to America’s Patriots.” The festivities continue at 7 p.m. at La Sierra Community Center, where youngsters can ride inflatable slides and paint watercolors with the Sacramento Fine Arts. Folks can nosh on food truck fare like lamb and falafel pitas from Hefty Gyros or Angus beef sliders and tri-tip sandwiches from New Bite while DJ’ed tunes set the scene before a 9:30 p.m. blast off of polychromatic pyrotechnics. Free. 7 p.m.-11 p.m. Locations vary. Carmichael. 485-5322. carmichaelpark.com

July 4

Go green at this observation of the red, white and blue as the city of Davis once again aims for a zero waste event at its 4th of July Celebration with water-filling stations (courtesy of the Davis Food Co-op) and three-bin recycling areas at Community Park, where live music starts at 5 p.m., including Sacramento-based Americana quartet The Nickel Slots, Be Calm Honcho (an indie-rock band out of San Francisco) and headlining folk group, New York’s Spirit Family Reunion before fireworks illuminate the night at 9:35 p.m. Throughout the day, America’s bicycling capital will host bike-themed activities, beginning with the 55th annual kiddie parade, where decorated strollers, bikes and trikes wheel down B Street and the Davis Bike Club’s Fourth of July Criterium held in the E Street Plaza, accompanied by the Kids Fun Ride during which children ages 9 and younger can get their pedal on after the adult racers are finished. Free. Times and locations vary by event. Davis. 530-757-5602. cityofdavis.org

El Dorado Hills
July 3

For the first time, El Dorado Hills Town Center will host the Fireworks and Freedom Concert for its Independence Day festivities. A kid’s zone will open at 7 p.m., featuring seven bounce houses and two gaming trucks by G-Factor, as well as balloon objects, face painting, shaved ice and cotton candy. Blackburn Bullet—a Northern California country rock band whose members have shared the stage with Lynyrd Skynyrd, Bon Jovi and Lady Antebellum—and Roseville-based cover band Apple Z will perform in the Steven Young Amphitheater. Prepare to be wowed by the fireworks show at 9:30 p.m. by Pyro Spectacular, which has coordinated shows for Disneyland, Disneyworld and the 2004 Summer Olympics. Free; small fee for Kid’s Zone. 7-10 p.m. El Dorado Hills Town Center. 4364 Town Center Blvd. 993-6699. eldoradohillstowncenter.com

Elk Grove
July 4

The city’s 19th annual Salute to the Red, White & Blue brings the celebration to Elk Grove Regional Park for a fantastic Fourth fête, beginning with the “Let Freedom Ride” parade, during which the Elk Grove Police Department’s bicycle unit will lead a caravan of decorated scooters, bikes, strollers and skates around the perimeter of the park. Festival-goers can find treats like street tacos, Italian ice and egg rolls; listen to the surf rock-reggae sound of the Southern California trio Safety Orange; and watch Obsidian Butterfly light up the night with a glow show before the 9:30 p.m. fireworks spectacular set to a mash-up of patriotic songs and pop hits by artists like Taylor Swift and Mark Ronson. Free. 4 p.m.-10 p.m. Elk Grove Regional Park. 9950 Elk Grove Florin Rd. Elk Grove. 683-7111. elkgrovecity.org

July 2-4

For the 55th year, the Folsom Pro Rodeo will produce a rollicking display of rodeo revelry, kicking off Wed., July 1, with the cattle drive through historic Sutter Street, featuring a Wells Fargo stagecoach and longhorn cattle as well as cowboys and the candidates for rodeo queen. The festivities continue Thurs., July 2 with a rodeo, complete with rodeo clowns, roping events, motocross, performances by the Painted Ladies and Bobby Kerr (who trains horses to drive a car), and activities for the kids like the silver dollar dig and mutton busting. Each night of the three-day rodeo will end the festivities with a salute to America via a parachutist descending from the sky with our country’s flag, plus a high-flying fireworks display at nightfall. $19.50-$26; $15 for children 10 and under. Gates open at 6 p.m. Dan Russell Rodeo Arena. 200 Stafford St. Folsom. 985-2698. folsomprorodeo.com

July 4

At this yearly Family Blast, the El Dorado County Fairgrounds welcomes young and old for an all-evening affair featuring a hay maze, two bounce houses, live music by local group Alincia & the Bandavelas and family-friendly activities and games like a balloon toss and egg race. Bring your own picnic or partake in scrumptious snacks like tacos, corn dogs, root beer floats and burgers, and settle in for the fireworks at 9:30 p.m. $3; free for ages 6 and under. Starts at 4 p.m. El Dorado County Fairgrounds. 100 Placerville Dr. 530-621-5860. eldoradocountyfair.org

Rancho Cordova
July 3-4

This 31st annual two-day extravaganza will feature a carnival with rides like the 100-foot-tall Century Wheel, a kids zone where children can run amuck in the Bobble Lagoon (in which they roll on water inside an inflated ball) or play games like fishing in a washing machine (courtesy of Gianelli’s Goofy Games). On Saturday, join the “Exercise Your Freedom” 5K fun run, which ends on the parade route which will include a Wells Fargo stagecoach, antique fire trucks and the Cordova High School marching band, among others. Each evening will feature concerts from local cover groups Hip Service (Friday) and the Huey Lewis tribute band SuperHuey (Saturday), two beer gardens and eats from food truck favorites like Drewski’s and Happy Cow Ice Cream, as well as more than 20 other vendors peddling traditional Fourth fare like pulled pork sandwiches, burgers and shaved ice, before the sky lights up with fireworks at 9:30 p.m. $2; $10 for parking; extra fee for some kids zone activities. Hagan Park. 2197 Chase Dr. Rancho Cordova. 273-5703. ranchocordovajuly4th.com

July 4

Roseville’s annual affair kicks off at 7:45 a.m. (yes, that's a.m.) with the “Run Crime Out of Roseville” 5K fun run benefiting the Roseville Police Department. Cross the finish line and stake your place for the parade, which will feature a barrage of cheerleading and little league groups, cub scouts and girl scouts, city council members and fire trucks. At Royer Park, the Capitol Pops Concert Band performs American-themed music; satisfy your festival food cravings with teriyaki chicken rice bowls from Kazoku Teriyaki & More, franks and hot links from Dave’s Dawgs and kettle corn from What’s Poppin’? Kettle Corn; and let the kids have at the inflatable slide and obstacle course and activities like ring toss and mini bowling. Get your fireworks fix at the Placer County Fairgrounds, which commence at 9:30 p.m. Free. $5 fairgrounds parking fee. Times and locations vary. 772-7259. roseville.ca.us

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