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Travel BLOG
June 20, 2016

Celebrate the 4th of July in Santa Cruz County!


Happy 4th of July from Santa Cruz County! From fireworks and family fun to parades and more, there are tons of events happening all around the county to celebrate Independence Day. See below for a quick round-up of some of the top to-dos happening on the 4th.

Scotts Valley 4th of July and Fireworks
Come celebrate July 4th in Scotts Valley! Parade, flyover, fireworks, outrageous BBQ, two live bands, games, petting zoo & much more! The Fireworks show in Scotts Valley is the only sanctioned fireworks show in Santa Cruz County. Advance tickets $6, at the door $8 (4 and under free). Activities and food are not included in price of admission. ATM available onsite.

Parade on Scotts Valley Drive and Activities & Fireworks at Skypark
Scotts Valley, CA

TIME: 3pm Parade | 4pm Food, Music & Games | 9:15pm Fireworks!

For parade application and details, click here.

Boulder Creek 4th of July Parade
This classic Fourth of July parade, set in downtown Boulder Creek, attracts upwards of 10,000 attendees each year. If you are a mountain dweller this is one you won't want to miss.

Downtown Boulder Creek Hwy 9 - between Scarborough Lumber and Railroad Avenue
Boulder Creek, CA


Aptos 4th of July Celebration
"World's Shortest Parade." Pancake breakfast 7:30am, parade at 10am, party in the park with live music, games, arts & crafts 11am-4pm at Aptos Village Park, 100 Aptos Creek Road.

Soquel Dr. & State Park Dr.
Aptos Village, CA

7:30am - 4pm

After the parade, be sure to swing by Cafe Rio in Aptos for their 5 year anniversary celebration! The party starts at noon and ends at 5pm including the outside patio and full bar service! Enjoy live Music by The Breeze Babes and Katy Ekin as well as All-American BBQ!

4th of July Family Fun Events
Bring out the entire family and friends for a fun-filled day of games, live music and an all-American barbecue.

Roaring Camp Railroads
5401 Graham Hill Road
Felton, CA

Old-Fashioned Independence Day
Visit Wilder Ranch's historic cultural preserve and take a step in time 100 years ago as you participate in an early 1900s-style Independence Day celebration including a noon family parade, games, children's crafts area, live big-band music, living history demonstrations, historic speeches and flag-raising. Food and drink available for sale, or bring a picnic lunch. Day-use parking fee is $10.

Wilder Ranch State Park, Two miles north on Hwy. 1
Santa Cruz, CA

11am - 4pm

Spirit of Watsonville 4th of July Parade
The 2016 Spirit of Watsonville hometown parade hits Main Street at 2pm. Expect floats, classic and muscle cars, antique tractors and equipment and equestrians

Downtown Watsonville
Watsonville, CA


Fourth of July Weekend Celebration at Big Basin
Participate in a Talent Show and join the Big Basin 4th of July Parade!

Talent Show Campfire (July 2 at 7pm) – celebrate Independence Day with a campfire, sing-a-long and talent show! If you have a skit, poem, song or a talent you’d like to share, sign up at headquarters in advance. All presentations should be appropriate for all ages. Acts should be only 3-5 minutes in length. Participants need to arrive promptly at 7 p.m. at the historic campfire center. Fire lighting and marshmallows (we provide the sticks and marshmallows!) at 7 pm; program begins at 7:30 pm. Wheelchair, stroller accessible. Good dogs welcome!

Fourth of July Parade (July 4 at 10am) – join the Big Basin 4th of July Parade, led by Uncle Sam, through the Redwoods to the Campfire Center where we will sing songs from the All American Song Book, ending with a salute to the flag and our national anthem. We hope that many campers and visitors will join us for this less than one hour salute to our nation’s birthday. Meet at the Campfire Center.

Big Basin Redwoods State Park
Located 9 miles outside of Boulder Creek on Hwy 236 at 21600 Big Basin Way.
(831) 338-8883

Santa Cruz Sunrise Rotary Firecracker 5K & 10K Race on the 4th of July
The Santa Cruz Sunrise Rotary Club is proud to bring you the Santa Cruz Firecracker 10K, 5K, and Kids 1K. The proceeds from the Firecracker races are applied to local community, national and international charity projects. Runners will enjoy breakfast after an awards ceremony that features medals to the top 3 in 5-year age groups! Now in its seventh year, the flat, fast 5K is certified, and is great for runners and walkers of all ages and also for spectators. As always, the kids (10 and under) can join in an exciting 1K fun run that starts 30 minutes before the main event, just outside the back of Costco, on Harvey West Boulevard.

Harvey West Park in Santa Cruz
Race Start Times 7:00am –
Registration opens 8:00am – Kid's 1K run/walk 8:30am – Firecracker 10K run 8:40am – Firecracker 5K run

Special Reminder: 4th of July Safety and Cleanup Programs
This is Santa Cruz County's busiest weekend of the season. In an effort to protect and preserve our beautiful county, violators who disrespect the beaches will be subject to fines and several initiatives are being launched to help keep the beaches clean.

Click here to learn more about how you can help!

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