America is a nation divided, and any number of issues — political, spiritual, and trivial — separate us as a society. One thing most all of us can agree on, however, is that fireworks are an awe-inspiring sight to behold.
And over the Fourth of July holiday, there will be plenty of them going off in the skies over our country. That includes here in the metro Phoenix area, where an arsenal of skyrockets will be in flight over parks and other outdoor locations across the Valley of the Sun from Scottsdale to Surprise (and many places in between).
This year, fireworks shows won’t just be happening on the Fourth of July; pyrotechnic theatrics will take place the day before the holiday and a couple of days afterward as Valley residents celebrate America’s 243rd birthday. (There’s even going to be a fireworks-free light show involving LED-equipped drones up in Carefree.)
And we’ve got the lowdown on where to go to witness the rockets’ red glare from Wednesday, July 3, to Saturday, July 6. Many will also feature a variety of other activities besides staring skyward in wonder, including games, rides, and even eating contests.
Here’s a rundown of the biggest and best Fourth of July displays happening in Phoenix in 2019.
Wednesday, July 3
Red, White & BoomFort McDowell Casino
10424 North Fort McDowell Road, Fort McDowell
This festival celebration at the Fort includes an outdoor concert by Eagles tribute act One of These Nights starting at 7:30 p.m., followed by a fireworks spectacular at 9 p.m. The Thaddeus Rose Band will also perform from 9 p.m. until 1 a.m. inside the Lucky 7 Saloon. Admission is free. Call 800-843-3678.
Celebrate America!Pleasant Harbor at Lake Pleasant
8708 West Harbor Boulevard, Peoria
Patrons can watch the fireworks from the southern shores of Lake Pleasant beginning at 9 p.m. Food trucks, live bands, water slides, and kids’ activities will be available throughout the evening starting at 5 p.m. Admission is free, but general parking is $20 and preferred parking is $50. Call 928-501-5270.
Anthem Independence Day Celebration Anthem Independence Day Celebration
Anthem Community Park
41703 North Gavilan Peak Parkway, Anthem
A mix of food and drink vendors, water slides, inflatables, rides, and live music will be a part of this celebration. If you’re going just for the fireworks, those start popping off at 9:30 p.m. Admission to the event is free, but certain rides and activities have a fee involved (patrons can purchase an unlimited wristband for $20 at the event). Hours are 6 to 10 p.m.
Sparks After DarkSix Flags Hurricane Harbor
4243 West Pinnacle Peak Road, Glendale
If spending a day riding the slides at this newly renamed water park (formerly known as Wet ’n’ Wild) wasn’t a thrilling enough prospect, Hurricane Harbor will have fireworks on Wednesday, July 3, and Thursday, July 4. The shows will begin at approximately 8:45 p.m. each evening. Visit the park's website for admission info and additional details. Call 623-201-2000.
Fireworks Family NightDream City Church
21000 North 75th Avenue, Glendale
Get an early start to your Independence Day during the family-friendly festivities at this church, which will have games, food, and other fun. They’ll have fireworks, too, starting at 8:30 p.m. Admission and parking are both free. Call 623-561-0500.
Thursday, July 4
Fabulous Phoenix 4thSteele Indian School Park
300 East Indian School Road
It wouldn’t be a Fourth of July without this long-running celebration, which has gone off annually since the mid-’80s. As always, it boasts one of the biggest fireworks displays in the entire Southwest, as well as two stages of live entertainment, dozens of vendors, interactive attractions, a classic car show, kids' activities, and a “water spray zone.” Gates open at 6 p.m. and the fireworks are at approximately 9:30 p.m. It’s free to attend. Call 602-534-3378 or see the website for additional details.
All-American FestivalPeoria Sports Complex
16101 North 83rd Avenue, Peoria
A massive fireworks show, which kicks off at 9:15 p.m., won’t be the only attraction at this family-friendly affair. There will also be music from Beach Boys tribute act Surfin’ and local blues-rock band Cadillac Angels, a cornhole tournament, food-eating contests, two water zones with slides, concession stands, a beer garden, and more. Event hours are from 5 to 10 p.m. General admission and parking is free. A $5 wristband will allow you to participate in activities like a rock wall, Euro bungee, and a mechanical bull. VIP packages are $30 and include access to premium seating in the colonnade area and outdoor patio, a dinner buffet, and other perks. Call 623-773-8700.
4th of ZoolyPhoenix Zoo
455 North Galvin Pkwy
Patrons of this affair can enjoy a catered barbecue dinner from 7 to 8:30 p.m., which will include pulled pork and chopped chicken sandwiches, baked beans, potato salad, and more. Meanwhile, carousel rides and the chance to check out the zoo’s Stingray Bay will also be offered. Hopefully, the Phoenix Zoo’s menagerie of animals won’t be too spooked by the array of fireworks that ignite beginning at 9 p.m. Hours are from 7 to 10 p.m. Admission is $45 for adults, $35 for children ages 3 to 12, and free for kids 2 and under (although reservations are required). Call 602-286-3800.
Arizona Celebration of FreedomMesa Convention Center
263 North Center Street, Mesa
Party like it’s 1776 at this celebration that will feature two stages of live music, a “Patriotic Superhero Stunt Show” with BMX tricksters, a laser light show, splash zone, trackless train rides, military vehicle displays, kids’ activities, and a Revolutionary War historical re-enactment. The fireworks get going at 9:30 p.m. and last approximately 30 minutes. Event hours are from 6 to 10 p.m. Admission is free.
The Wigwam’s Red, White and Boom!Wigwam Resort
300 East Wigwam Boulevard, Litchfield Park
The fairway of the Wigwam resort’s Blue Golf Course will be the site of this Fourth of July fiesta that will have DJs, water slides, food and drinks, bounce houses, and other fun. The event runs from 6 to 8:30 p.m. with the fireworks starting sometime after dark. Admission to the event is free and wristbands offering unlimited access to all rides and activities are $10 per person. Beach towels, blankets, and lawn chairs are encouraged. Call 623-935-3811.
July 4th Tempe Town Lake FestivalTempe Beach Park
80 West Rio Salado Parkway, Tempe
Tempe Town Lake will serve as a backdrop to one of the Valley’s most popular fireworks shows. Meanwhile, the adjacent Tempe Beach Park hosts an enormous festival offering concession stands and food trucks, live entertainment, vendor booths, children’s activities, and more. Gates open at 5 p.m. and the fireworks start at 9 p.m. Tickets are $8 in advance, $10 at the event while children under 12 and active military members are free. VIP tickets are $60 for adults, and $30 for children ages 5 to 12. They include misted viewing areas for the fireworks, a barbecue dinner, two drink tickets, and other amenities.
Star Spangled 4th of JulyGoodyear Ballpark
1933 South Ballpark Way, Goodyear
Festivities at this Independence Day event will include live music, a zipline, water slides, carnival rides, food and drink vendors, and more. There’s a fireworks display, of course, which is at 9 p.m. Gates open at 6 p.m. General admission is free. VIP packages featuring air-conditioned suites and all-you-can-eat food are $550 each. Call 623-882-3120 for reservations.
July 4th Fireworks SpectacularTumbleweed Park
2250 South McQueen Road, Chandler
A high-energy celebration and evening-long party will take over Tumbleweed Park and feature such distractions as live music, interactive activities, a photo booth, and games like cornhole and volleyball. If you’re feeling hungry, food vendors will be on hand. A 30-minute fireworks display lights things up at 9 p.m. The festivities start at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free and parking is available for $5 per vehicle. Call 480-782-2735.
Fourth at the FountainFountain Park
12925 North Saguaro Boulevard, Fountain Hills
Jets of water from Fountain Hills namesake landmark won’t be the only thing shooting skyward during this affair. A cannonade of fireworks will glow overhead starting at 9 p.m. It’s the highlight of the town’s free Fourth of July extravaganza at Fountain Park, which goes from 6 to 10 p.m. and will include a rock-climbing wall, bounce houses, food and drink vendors, music, prize giveaways, and more. Admission and parking is free. Call 480-816-5185.
Westgate Fireworks Fest 2019Westgate Entertainment District
6751 North Sunset Boulevard, Glendale
Lawn chairs and blankets are encouraged at this celebration, allowing patrons to kick back and take in the spectacle of skyrockets in flight. There will be two stages of live entertainment, a water zone, and more starting at 5 p.m. The fireworks begin at 9 p.m. Admission and parking is free. Call 623-266-6607 or see Westgate's website for more info.
Hometown FourthSchnepf Farms
24810 South Rittenhouse Road, Queen Creek
This homespun celebration at Schnepf Farms will offer lawn games, a watermelon-eating contest, artsy vendors, live music, a beer and wine garden, food trucks, and family-friendly activities. It all leads up to an eye-catching fireworks show at 8:30 p.m. Everything starts at 4 p.m. General admission is $20 per carload when purchased online or $25 per carload at the event. VIP admission is $45 and includes access to an air-conditioned area in the barn, private parking, a barbecue dinner, and front row seating for the fireworks. Call 480-987-3100.
Old-Fashioned Independence Day CelebrationYoungker High School
3000 South Apache Road, Buckeye
Live entertainment, food trucks, vendors, free watermelon, and family-friendly fun will be a part of this event, as will a spectacular array of fireworks. Start time is 6 p.m. and the skyrockets go off beginning at 9 p.m. Admission is free.
Gilbert’s July Fourth CelebrationHigley High School
4068 East Pecos Road, Gilbert
The town of Gilbert’s annual Independence Day will feature fireworks in abundance as well as a variety of food trucks selling eats and drinks. You can also bring your own coolers and water to the event, which goes from 6 to 9 p.m. Fireworks are at 8:30 p.m. Admission and parking are free.
Scottsdale Fourth of July CelebrationWestWorld
16601 North Pima Road, Scottsdale
There will be tons to see and do at this extravaganza, including Fortnite gaming, a stunt dog show, carnival rides, bull-riding shows, appearances by Captain Marvel and Captain America, pony rides, a petting zoo, and live music. They’ll also have a variety of food and drink vendors. A massive fireworks spectacle gets going at 9 p.m. to cap things off. Hours are 4 to 9:40 p.m. General admission for adults is $15 per person, regardless of age, and admission with a barbecue dinner is $35 per person. Activity wristbands are $15 per person and admission for just the fireworks is $20. Parking is $5 per vehicle. Call 480-656-9940.
Surprise’s 4th of July CelebrationMark Coronado Park
15850 North Bullard Avenue, Surprise
West Valley residents can partake in live music, contests, food trucks, yard games, and more. Everything gets going at 6 p.m. and the fireworks will happen at 8:40 p.m. Free. Call 623-222-2000.
Tolleson’s 4th of July CelebrationVeterans Park
8601 West Van Buren Street, Tolleson
Got a hearty appetite and big stomach? You could take home some loot during Tolleson’s Independence Day event, which will have separate eating contests involving watermelon, pizza, and hot dogs. After stuffing yourself for fun and prizes, they’ll also have an array of water slides, live music, and craft vendors. Hours are 4 to 9:30 p.m. and the fireworks light things up at dusk. Free. Call 623-936-2754.
Hometown Fireworks CelebrationApache Junction High School Football Stadium
2525 South Ironwood Drive, Apache Junction
They’ll be celebrating the Fourth of July out in AJ with fireworks, game booths, a kids’ zone, and other distractions. They’ll even have free watermelon starting from 6 p.m. until it runs out, and a bicycle-, wagon-, and tricycle-decorating contest will be at 6:30 p.m. The Roman candles will go off at 8:30 p.m. Admission is free. Call 480-983-2181 or see this website for more details.
Great American 4thCopper Sky Regional Park
44345 West Martin Luther King Boulevard, Maricopa
Tailgating kicks off at 1 p.m. at this Fourth of July fiesta down in Maricopa, followed at 5 p.m. by DJs and a pool party. A freestyle motocross show will be at 7:45 p.m. and the main event of the evening (a.k.a. fireworks) are at 9 p.m. Call 520-316-4600.
Friday, July 5
D-Backs Fifth of July Fireworks SpectacularChase Field
401 East Jefferson Street
Didn’t get your fill of fireworks during the Fourth of July holiday? The Arizona Diamondbacks will give you one last dose of multicolored majesty when they light up the skies over Chase Field following their game with the Colorado Rockies on July 5. First pitch is at 6:10 p.m. Tickets are $22 to $210. Call 602-514-8400.
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Saturday, July 6
Civana Lights Block Party and Drone Show
37220 North Mule Train Road, Carefree
A fleet of more than 100 LED drones will perform a choreographed ballet of light, color, and movement set to music above the Civana Carefree resort. It will be the highlight of an evening-long block party that will also include family activities, live music, and food trucks like Wandering Donkey and Aioli Burger. Hours are 6 to 9:30 p.m. and the show is at 8:45 p.m. Admission is free but parking is $25 per car. Call 480-653-9000.