Nashville's celebration has been named the "Best 4th of July Celebration" in America, but if you don't want to deal with the hassle and traffic of downtown, there's plenty of other places around Middle Tennessee to celebrate the holiday, even as early as tonight.
The Hendersonville Freedom Festival is tonight at Drake's Creek Park - a HUGE family-friendly option that's home to a ton of kids' activities, live entertainment, and food trucks. Not to mention these things, which Zac and I had a little too much fun with last year.
The festival starts at 5:00 tonight, with fireworks lighting up the sky starting at 9:00pm, and while many of the activities cost a little bit of money (including $5 for the kids zone), the cash is used to provide grants for local teachers.
Other festivals tonight (July 3rd) include Clarksville's festival at Liberty Park, which is free and pictured below, and Smyrna's excellent display at Lee Victory Recreation Park. Fireworks for both of those festivals launch at 9:15.
Virtually every suburb of Nashville has a celebration tomorrow night. Here's a few notable ones:
BRENTWOOD'S Red, White and Boom Celebration is at Crockett Park/Eddy Arnold Ampitheater. Festival begins at 5:00pm with Food Trucks and live entertainment. The fireworks show starts at 9:00. Free admission.
FRANKLIN on the Fourth is an all-day celebration kicking off at 10:00am with music, food and craft vendors, a petting zoo and kids' activities scattered up and down Main Street. The annual Children's Parade kicks off at 5:00pm, and the festival closes down at 8:00pm to give you plenty of time to head down to Harlinsdale Farm for the fireworks at 9:00pm.
GOODLETTSVILLE will celebrate Independence Day at Moss-Wright Park starting at 4:00pm with plenty of food trucks, face painting, pony rides, rock climbing, and more for the kids. Fireworks begin at 9:00pm.
FORT CAMPBELL'S celebration begins at 6pm with live music and food vendors. Fireworks are set to start at 9:30pm
MURFREESBORO will set off fireworks at McKnight Park starting at 9:00pm.
Fireworks in LEBANON (Wilson County Fairgrounds) and LAVEGRNE (Veterans Memorial Park) go off at dusk, and MOUNT JULIET'S display at Providence Marketplace starts at 9:30pm.
Fireworks in SPRING HILL will be easily visible from my back yard, but it won't be nearly as special since people in my neighborhood have been shooting them off every Saturday and Sunday since June 1st (yes, that shade was necessary).
And of course, if you want to brave the traffic and tourists and see what all the hype about Downtown Nashville's 4th of July celebration is...well, you won't be disappointed. Live music and activities start up on the Broadway stage at noon, with Chris Janson, Lady Antebellum and more leading up to a fireworks display accompanied by the Nashville Symphony at Ascend Ampitheater at 9:30pm. Details are here, but be aware of road closures and trouble parking if you decide to make the trek.