Fireworks, Family Fun, and Freedom!

Forth of July weekend is upon us! Time for parties, barbecue, hot weather, and cold beer.  If you having decided on something to do yet, there are plenty of festive options, many of them completely free! Check out these fun local events if you’re looking for ideas to celebrate our nation’s independence. 


Freedom Over Texas

Eleanor Tinsley Park will host Houston’s 30th annual Freedom Over Texas celebration from 4:00-10:00 on July 4th. The event will feature country music performances, games, kids activities, a salute to the military, and a spectacular fireworks display to close the evening. Dogs are not allowed, so plan to leave Fido at home. (Service dogs are an exception to this rule.) Tickets are $10 at the gate or $8 until midnight on July 3. Purchase tickets online at


If you aren’t in the mood to deal with event traffic, Martin Hajovsky of Home in the Heights offers this helpful hint: you can actually see the fireworks from several places in the southern part of the Heights. For optimum crowd-free viewing, go south on Waverly Street until the cross the bike path and it terminates at West 6th Street. Turn right and you will see White Oak Bayou before you get to Shepherd. The grassy area between 6th and White Oak Bayou is the perfect spot for a late-night picnic while you watch the fireworks. 


Independence Day at Bayou Bend

Bayou Bend will offer a free day of performances, crafts, games, activities, and refreshments, rain or shine. This event will feature a historic and artistic slant, naturally, but will not be just another day at the museum. The Declaration of Independence will be read aloud at 3:20, followed by the cutting of a birthday cake for America. Guests can even sign a giant replica Declaration of Independence! The festivities kick off at 12:00 noon and ends at 5:00. If you’ve never been to Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens, look for it at 6003 Memorial Drive. 


Summer Symphony Star-Spangled Salute

The Exxonmobil Summer Symphony Series will host a special Star-Spangled Salute at 8:30 pm on the 4th at Miller Outdoor Theatre. The highlight of the evening will be a lively rendition of the 1812 Overture, complete with real cannons. A brilliant fireworks display will close out the evening. The Houston Symphony will perform under the direction of Steven Reineke, with vocalists Kristine Reese and Billy Tighe. As all Miller Outdoor Theatre events, admission is free.