The July Fourth holiday is fast approaching, with a bevy of celebrations planned across the Antelope Valley, to mark the occasion. Whether it’s fireworks or family fun, parades or pancakes, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
The celebrations kick off on Saturday, as Palmdale hosts its second Freedom Celebration and Fireworks at the Palmdale Amphitheater.
The event opens with a performance by Tom Petty tribute band, Petty and The Heartshakers, with such classic songs as “Refugee,” “American Girl,” “Free Fallin,’” “Breakdown” and “Don’t Do Me Like That.”
A fireworks spectacular choreographed to patriotic music will follow their performance.
Admission is $5 for ages 13 and up. Free admission tickets are available for those 12 and younger and must be presented at the gate and children must be accompanied by an adult.
Tickets are available online at www.PalmdaleAmphitheater.com
Parking is free, but carpooling and alternate transportation is encouraged due to the expected large crowds.
Gates will open at 5 p.m.
Food and beverage concessions will be available onsite. Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets and/or low back chairs to sit on. No outside food, fireworks, alcohol, pets or EZ ups are allowed.
Prior to the fireworks show, the Patriotic Pooch Parade will take place from 9-11 a.m., Saturday at Yellen Dog Park, 5100 East Ave. S in Palmdale.
Themed and decorated dogs and wagons are encouraged for the parade, which starts at 10 a.m. There will be prizes for best dressed and most creative wagon.
“Puppuccinos” and a photo area will be available for all participants.
Red White and Cool Pool Parties
Pool parties are planned on Saturday at two Palmdale parks: from noon to 3 p.m. at Marie Kerr, 2723 Rancho Vista Blvd. and from 2-6 p.m. at McAdam Park, 38115 30th St. East.
These Red, White and Cool Pool parties are free and will feature water games, music and more.
One-to-one adult in-water supervision is required for children under 47 inches tall. Space is limited.
“Independence Day” feature film
The Palmdale City Library will screen the movie “Independence Day” at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday.
Guests are invited to come early at 5 p.m., for cake and an Independence Day trivia contest, complete with prizes.
Legacy Commons for Active Seniors will host Freedom Bingo from 1-3 p.m., Wednesday. Wear red, white and blue and the bingo cards are free, with a maximum of six cards, while they last. Must be 55 or older to participate.
Family Field Day
at the parks
Kick off your July Fourth festivities with an old-fashioned Field Day from 9-11 a.m., Thursday at Marie Kerr and Dominic Massari parks.
Bring your competitive spirit and get ready to play some wacky games, presented by Palmdale’s Recreation and Culture Department. A patriotic photo area will be available and there will be patriotic giveaways, while supplies last.
Admission is free.
An old-fashioned Independence Day is on tap on Thursday at the Lancaster Cemetery, 111 E. Lancaster Blvd.
The Friends of Lancaster Cemetery will present a pancake breakfast at 8 a.m., featuring the culinary work of Crazy Otto’s Jin Hur, along with Juan Blanco of Coffee 4Vets. Pancake lovers will have their choice of fruit toppings and whipped cream, in addition to maple syrup and butter.
The breakfast, including juice and coffee, is $5 for adults and $3 for children 10 and younger.
In addition to the breakfast, the event includes an historical “treasure hunt” to learn about those interred at the historic cemetery, along with patriotic music. Attendees are encouraged to dress up in their favorite red, white and blue garb.
Pancakes will be served until 10 a.m., but the festivities will continue until 11 a.m.
The annual Independence Day parade in Acton, put on by the Acton Agua Dulce Chamber of Commerce, will begin at 9 a.m., Thursday.
With the theme this year of “Salute to American Superheroes,” the parade will run down Crown Valley Road from Aliso Street to Smith Avenue.
Rodeo and Fireworks
The Antelope Valley Fairgrounds will be the place in Lancaster for Fourth of July fun, with the annual Professional Bull Riders Touring Pro Division and Fireworks Extravaganza on Thursday.
Gates will open at 4 p.m. for food, shopping, music, line dancing and lessons.
The Professional Bull Riders competition begins at 7 p.m., opened by a flyover by the Condor Flight Squadron in their World War II-era AT-6 trainers.
The bullriders are competing for a $20,000 cash purse, trying to stay atop bulls weighing in at more than 1,500 pounds.
Following the competition, there will be a fireworks display, followed by the Van Dam Barn Dance at the Cantina stage, with live country and rock music by Jake Nelson and the Tone Wranglers.
Tickets start at $15 and are on sale at www.avfair.com. Rodeo tickets include reserved grandstand seating for the fireworks; free seating is available on the fairgrounds’ grass. Chairs and blankets are encouraged for those viewing fireworks from the grass.
Parking is $7 per car.