Viewing fireworks requires a road trip
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East County residents who don’t want to pony up a few hundred dollars to create their own fireworks bonanza will need to travel to get their Fourth of July fill.
Aberdeen will have one massive fireworks show and, for the second year in a row, celebrations on both banks of the Chehalis River on Friday. The Five Star Dealership SPLASH festival at Morrison Riverfront Park features loads of family fun, rock and country bands. The reserved parking area is closed to the public in Morrison Park until 7:30 p.m. Parking for the handicapped is available at the east entrance to TOP Foods.
Starting at noon, there will be food and crafts and interactive games including a rock wall, dual lane slide, an obstacle course and an under the sea inflatable. A few highlights: At 2:15 p.m., rocker Joe Ty says he’s putting on his “retirement from music” show and at 3:45 p.m. is “Son of the Reptile Man.” Admission is free. Fireworks start when it gets dark. Across the river will be the Sail-a-bration at Seaport Landing with walk-on tours of the Lady Washington and Hawaiian Chieftain from 3 - 7 p.m and music by local bands Gebular, Razors and Red Flags. There will also be a car show. Admission is $5 for parking.
There will also be fireworks at the Quinault Beach Resort & Casino at 78 Highway 115, near Ocean Shores. The professional fireworks show starts when it gets dark. When the show is done, head on the walking path near the casino to the beach for a bon fire experience and catch a look at all of the other fireworks up and down the beach. One note: the Fireworks O’er the Water, which had gone on for years on the North Beach, was canceled this year. Those in Ocean Shores earlier in the day can also experience a picnic with fun and games at the Ocean Shores Convention Center at 120 W. Chance A La Mer.
The Quinault Indian Nation is also hosting their Chief Taholah Days at Taholah, the annual commemoration of the 1855 Treaty. There is a parade, baseball, canoe races, a salmon bake, fireworks and more. The fireworks start at about 10 p.m. Highlights on July 4: canoe races at 5:30 p.m., amateur boxing at 7 p.m. at the community center and a dance at 9 p.m. at Heritage Park.
The city of Westport will host an old-fashioned 4th of July family celebration at the Maritime Museum, 2201 W. Westhaven Dr., complete with children’s games for prizes, food, clowns, a plant and bake sale, face painting, a cakewalk and a silent auction. 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Booming Bay Fireworks Display begins at dusk.
The Shoalwater Bay Casino will also host a celebration on July 4.
For the eighth year in a row, the casino will host a professional fireworks show and hand out free hot dogs as long as 2,500 of them last after service starts at 6:30 p.m. The display starts at 10:15 p.m. Marketing manager Todd Arend notes that only those 21 and older are allowed in the casino. There is a convenience store and the new Sand Verbena restaurant across the road. Since as many as 4,500 people show up for the show, parking will be tight at State Route 105 and Tokeland Road, so he recommends showing up early.
The biggest fireworks display in Thurston County is hosted by the city of Tumwater. At 11 a.m., the city hosts its 27th Annual Independence Day Celebration Parade, starting at the corner of Capitol Boulevard and Lee Street in Tumwater. Then, at 6 p.m. the Tumwater Downtown Association is hosting the Tumwater Artesian Festival & Thunder Valley Fireworks Show at the Tumwater Valley Golf Course driving range, 4611 Tumwater Valley Dr. SE in Tumwater. Festival entry is free, although there’s a parking fee of $10 per car. The fireworks show begins at 10:15 p.m. and will be accompanied by music on site.
More information online at http://www.ci.tumwater.wa.us.
The most popular fireworks display in Tacoma is at Freedom Fair, taking place along the Ruston waterfront and Tacoma Narrows Airport. The festival includes vintage cars, an air show, a motorcycle show and live entertainment. The show costs at least a $2 donation per person. Fireworks start at 10:10 p.m. and can be seen all over Tacoma. More information online at http://www.freedomfair.com.
Oakville will have its annual Independence parade,“Celebrating Oakville Past, Present and Future,” on July 5 featuring a parade, food, art, crafts and vendors and typically a re-enactment of the last horseback robbery in the state, although that may not happen this year. The parade starts at 11 a.m. along Highway 12 through the city. For more information, http://www.oakvillecityhall.com/ or contact Umpqua Bank at (360) 273-7766. There will be no fireworks.
Traditionally held the Saturday closest to the 4th of July, the Independence Day Community Parade on July 5 at the Tokeland Marina and Tokeland Hotel now attracts more than 200 entrants, the South Coast News says. The parade starts at 11 a.m. at the Tokeland Marina. A picnic lunch follows at the hotel and is free for parade participants. Games are held for children.
The Grays Harbor Raceway at the county fairgrounds, 32 Elma McCleary Road in Elma, will also conduct their regular races plus fireworks on July 5.