4th of July Guide: Parades, fireworks and more

M4j9-InhEfA0UbDc11OOfStGlMHTJsnaZIFAHHa26ngThe 46th annual Peachtree Road Race officially kicks off the holiday with 60,000 people taking part in the massive morning sprint from Buckhead to Midtown. As usual the race starts at Lenox Square and makes its ways down Peachtree Street to 10th Street and Piedmont Park. The wheelchair race begins at 6:45 a.m. and the foot race at 7:17 a.m.  Spectators are strongly encouraged to take MARTA, which will begin running at 5 a.m. on race day. Many restaurants and bars will be open along the route to watch the race, so check with your favorite watering hole. For more information, visit peachtreeroadrace.org.

The inaugural Virginia-Highland & Morningside Independence Day Parade begins at 11 a.m. at the fire station on Lanier Boulevard and continues to University Avenue. The event will benefit historic Fire Station #19. For more information, visit vhmpa.org.

The Legendary Fourth of July at Lenox Square features live music and one of the biggest fireworks displays in the country. Lenox Square shops and restaurants will be open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on July 4. Entertainment begins at 6 p.m. with Gump Fiction and Party on the Moon. Fireworks are scheduled to begin at approximately 9:40 p.m. Parking will be almost impossible, so visitors are encouraged to take MARTA. Pets are not allowed. For more information, visit simon.com.

The Centennial Olympic Park’s 4th of July Celebration will begin at 6 p.m. with fireworks scheduled around 9:40 p.m. There will be entertainment and live music, too. Visitors are encouraged to take MARTA to Philips Arena/GWCC or Peachtree Center stations, and don’t forget the Atlanta Streetcar stops at Centennial Park. For more information: centennialpark.com.

The Georgia Aquarium Red White & Brew is July 4 from 7 to 10 p.m. with beer, food and live music in the Oceans Ballroom. Guests will move to the aquarium’s parking deck rooftop to watch the fireworks at Centennial Park around 9:40 p.m. Tickets range from $15 to $55 and proceeds go to the aquarium’s educational and summer camp programs for kids. For more information, visit georgiaaquarium.com.

Decatur Pied Piper Parade (Courtesy City of Decatur)
Decatur Pied Piper Parade (Courtesy City of Decatur)

Decatur’s July 4th Pied Piper Parade will wind through downtown Decatur on July 4 and the community is invited to join in by decorating your wagon, riding a bike, skating or walking in the event. Line-up is at 5:30 p.m. at First Baptist Church of Decatur, the parade begins at 6 p.m. and ends at the Community Bandstand on the courthouse square. The Callanwolde Concert Band will play at 7 p.m. and fireworks will follow at dark. For more information, visit visitdecaturgeorgia.com.

The Dunwoody 4th of July Parade is the largest in the metro area. It will step off at 9 a.m. at the corner of Mount Vernon and Jett Ferry roads. There will be floats, marching bands and after-parade activities.

The Sandy Springs Stars and Stripes Celebration is actually on July 5 with music from Shiloh at 7:30 p.m. followed by fireworks at 9:45 p.m. at the King and Queen buildings. The official viewing area will be located on the lawn at the Concourse Corporate Center located at Five Concourse Parkway. Visitors are encouraged to pack a snack, bring a blanket, and enjoy an evening under the stars. For more information, visit sandyspringsga.org.

Stone Mountain is hosting its Fantastic Fourth Celebration July 2-5. All the parks big attractions will be open and the Lasershow Spectacular will be extra spectacular with fireworks to mark the holiday. Be advised to arrive early on July 4 because once the park reaches capacity, the gates are closed to traffic. Visit stonemountainpark.com for details.

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