FourthThursday is the fourth of July; have you made any plans yet?  If not (uh…you’re not alone.  How is it July already??) – don’t worry.  Charlotte offers plenty to do!


Fourth of July Celebration in Lake Norman (10:00 AM – 1:00 PM, FREE) – Celebrate the Fourth of July at Birkdale Village, with face painting, a parade, bike decorating and more!  After the sun goes down watch the fireworks over Lake Norman.
Waxhaw Fourth of July Celebration (All Day, FREE) – Enjoy the parade, beach party with live music, water obstacle course, surf simulator and moon bounce, and fireworks show after dark!
Coca-Cola 4th of July Festival (4:00 PM, FREE) – Celebrate with live music and fireworks over the US National Whitewater Center’s river.
Fourth of July Celebration (10:00 AM – 1:00 PM, $5 – $15) – Go back in time at the Charlotte Museum of History; listen to a reading of the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence and the ringing of the American Freedom Bell, then participate in colonial games and a scavenger hunt.
Matthews Fun Family 4th of July (5:30 PM – 9:30 PM, FREE) – Enjoy a parade, bike decorating and live music in Stumptown Park.
Indian Trail 4th of July Parade (9:30 AM, FREE) – Start your day in downtown Indian Trial with a parade and watermelon eating contest.
Novant Health July 4th Spectacular (6:00 PM – 9:30 PM, FREE) – Spend the fourth of July in Uptown with a fireworks show and live music.
Red, White and Freedom (11:00 AM, FREE) – Celebrate the fourth in Gastonia at the largest fourth of July festival in the Southern Piedmont.  Enjoy games, rides, fireworks and more!

More interested in a celebration at home?  We know hot dogs aren’t really supposed to be a staple in any one’s diet, but nothing says “Fourth of July” to me quite like hot dogs and hamburgers.  Check out Applegate Farm’s variety – their dogs are antibiotic-free, vegetarian-fed beef seasoned only with paprika, sea salt, and celery powder.  No artificial nitrates, fillers or any other junk.

Fourth FoodFor the picky toddler in your life, throw in some favorites (in our house at least) fruit and yogurt, with a patriotic twist.  Add  homemade cole slaw and some baked fries (drizzled with some garlic and olive oil *wink*) and, of course, dessert.  What’s more American than apple pie?  How about apple pie cookies?  These made their debut in our house a few months ago and will definitely be making a return appearance this weekend…that is, if they can last that long.