11 Ways to Celebrate This Fourth of July

Take the kiddos on a scavenger hunt, enjoy sky-high views of D.C. at a hotel party, and get your fill of fireworks.
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Revel in fireworks shows in Northern Virginia and across the Potomac at this slew of Fourth of July events. (Photo by Mike Enerio on Unsplash)

Fourth of July weekend is fast approaching and there are plenty of ways to get into the patriotic spirit and enjoy the great outdoors. Here are some of the highlights:

McLean Independence Day Celebration

July 2, 6:30-10:30 p.m.

Kick back with some tunes, bites from local food trucks and a fireworks show at this community gathering organized by the McLean Community Center. Click here for information on free shuttles to the event. // Langley High School, 6520 Georgetown Pike, McLean. Free.

Independence Day Scavenger Hunt

July 3, 2-5 p.m.

Get the kiddos involved in some patriotic fun at this Falls Church scavenger hunt. Participants will be invited to search local parks for items posted to the city’s social media channels, track their finds and submit their tracking sheets at Cherry Hill Park for a treat. // Cherry Hill Park, 312 Park Ave., Falls Church. Free.

Quantico Marine Corps Band

July 3, 5 p.m.

Bring a picnic dinner, seats and a blanket to Cherry Hill Park for a performance from the more than century-old Quantico Marine Corps band, whose performance credits include a Super Bowl pregame show, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and many other notable events throughout the country. //Cherry Hill Park, 312 Park Ave., Falls Church. Free.

An American Celebration at Mount Vernon

July 4, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Make a day of it at George Washington’s longtime home—”meet” the country’s first president as he converses with the troops, observe a citizenship ceremony for individuals from around the world, watch a performance from the National Concert Band and catch a fireworks show. //3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway, Mount Vernon. Free for Mount Vernon members, non-members pay grounds admission, $13-$26.

Fourth of July Bike Parade

July 4; 10:00 a.m. (Decorating), 10:30 a.m. (Start of Parade)

Bring your favorite wheeled mode of transport (including wagons and strollers!) to this Waycroft-Woodlawn neighborhood parade, which will be followed by a barbecue and an awards ceremony for most inventive decor. //1200 N. Abingdon St., Arlington. Free.

Annual Reading of the Declaration of Independence

July 4, Noon

Listen to a live recitation of the Declaration of Independence by members of the Falls Church Village Preservation and Improvement Society. // Falls Church City Hall, 300 Park Ave., Falls Church. Free.

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Buena Vida Gastrolounge recently reopened a renovated rooftop, set to host a Fourth of July party with DJ-spun tunes. (Photo courtesy of the restaurant)

Fourth of July Watch Party in the SkyDome 

July 4, 7-10 p.m.

Dig into a buffet loaded with Southern fare (think pork ribs, mac and cheese, Mississippi mud pie) and enjoy views of D.C. fireworks from 15 stories high at this National Landing hotel. Tickets include a soda bar and two alcoholic beverages per person. // Double Tree Hotel, 300 Army Navy Drive, Arlington. Reservations required and seating is limited. $160 adults, $80 children (4-12).

Buena Vida Gastrolounge Rooftop Party

July 4, 4-10 p.m. 

Stake out a spot at this recently reopened rooftop lair for prime views of area fireworks and a soundtrack of DJ-spun tunes. With the purchase of a bottle of specialty liquors or champagne, patrons can also take advantage of VIP seating and receive two complimentary juices. // Buena Vida Gastrolounge, 2900 Wilson Blvd., #103, Arlington. Menu prices vary.

Red, White and Booze

July 4

Sip on red patriotic punch, white tea shooters, blue Hawaiian punch and American flag-hued Jell-O shots at this outdoor affair at the edge of Clarendon. // The Lot, 3217 10th St., Arlington. Menu prices vary

Watch D.C. Fireworks From Across the River

July 4, 9 p.m.

Carve out your own cozy corner at one of Arlington’s prime viewing spots—including Long Bridge Park, Gateway Park, Gravelly Point, the Key Bridge and the Marine Corps War Memorial—to view D.C. fireworks from this side of the Potomac. (Note: The Air Force Memorial is closed to fireworks this year due to nearby construction.) //Click here for park locations. Free.

USA/Alexandria Birthday Celebration

July 9, 6-9:45 p.m

Commemorate the birthday of the country and the city of Alexandria (246th and 273rd respectively) at this fireworks show, preceded by a performance from the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra. Live music, vendors and cupcakes are also on the agenda. //100 Madison St., Alexandria. Free.

Categories: Arts & Entertainment