Get your 4th on!

Get your 4th on!

A short list of Portland area 4th of July celebrations:

Fireworks show at Tom McCall Waterfront Park is the largest display in Oregon and put on in conjunction with the Waterfront Blues Festival, so it’s going to be crowded. Be prepared to pay for parking, and to do some walking to the event site.  The fireworks start at 10 pm, but you’ll want to get down there much earlier for prime viewing.  Looking for a more intimate setting for your fireworks display? For the over 21 crowd consider: Portland City Grill or a Portland Spirit Dinner Cruise.

If you’re more of the “go large or go home” type, you’ll want to spend the day at Ft. Vancouver. This show purports to be the largest west of the Mississippi, and organizers expect up to 35,000 visitors. General admission is just $5 for adults, but for prime viewing, you’ll pay $50 per adult.  Again, get there early and be prepared for long lines getting out. If you’re one of the folks who used to skip the traffic by viewing from Marine Drive on the Oregon side, be aware that the show changed two years ago to prevent those free glimpses from Oregon.

Perhaps the most affordable and kid-friendly option will be the Oaks Park. Admission prices are low (just $5 for 16+, and $2 for kids), but if you plan to get there early to enjoy the rides bring extra funds. An all-day deluxe bracelet will run you $25, but there are cheaper options and single tickets as well. There’s also a live concert stage for a free entertainment alternative to the rides.

Like a more suburban setting? 

4th of July Family Festival at Happy Valley Park features live music, carnival games,  vendor booths, and a fireworks display.

Estacada Timber Festival has everything you need in a 4th of July festival plus a mechanical bull and lawn mower races.

Close in and free, Tigard’s old-fashioned 4th of July Celebration offers all the basics for those budget conscious/crowd wary families.

Ditto for West Linn except tack on a centennial celebration for 2013!

Have a safe and fun Independence Day!