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Start the Weekend with a Bang!

Jul 03, 2014 03:01PM ● By Jake Russell

Annapolis 4th of July Parade // Photo by Tony J Lewis

By Jake Russell

Nothing spreads the cheer of patriotism like the Fourth of July. The sun, the cookouts, the social scene, the fireworks and the recognition of how lucky we are to spend times like these together. To add some value to your Independence Day experience, we’re going to inject some red, white, and blue fun into your weekend by recommending the best local events to celebrate the freedom ‘Murica provides.

Let’s start in Annapolis, which served as the capital of this great nation from November 26, 1783 to June 3, 1784.

The annual Annapolis 4th of July Parade takes place from 6:30-8 p.m. on Friday evening beginning at Amos Garret Boulevard and continuing through West Street, around Church Circle, and down Main Street. The parade features fire trucks from different eras, marching bands, cars, vans, service clubs, and scouts. Following the parade will be a performance from the Naval Academy Band at Susan B. Campbell Park at 8 p.m. The fireworks show in Annapolis Harbor will begin around 9:15 p.m. and can be seen from miles around by boat or by land.

The Schooner Woodwind will offer a 4th of July cruise, which departs from the Annapolis Marriott Waterfront at 6:30 p.m. The cruise includes bottled water, soft drinks, and a wide selection of desserts with beer and wine available for purchase.

Speaking of cruises, don’t miss out on the rare opportunity for free 4th of July sails on the Skipjack Nathan for a 360 degree view of both shores. Departures begin each hour starting from 1-4 p.m. at Long Wharf in Cambridge.

If you’re in the mood for a historical perspective on Independence Day, take a tour of one of four Maryland signers of the Declaration of Independence at the William Paca House on Prince George Street. Friday’s tours of the 250-year-old Georgian mansion take place at 11:30 a.m., 12:30, 1:30, and 2:30 p.m. The Paca House will also host its 9th Annual Naturalization Ceremony from 10-11 a.m.

Take a dip at Truxtun Park Poo, which will host a Fourth of July Celebration from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. with prizes and games such as a biggest splash contest, penny dive, and a greased watermelon relay.

The annual Severna Park 4th of July Parade begins Friday at 10 a.m. at St. Martin's in-the-Field Episcopal Church and ends at Woods Memorial Presbyterian Church. Following the parade will be a festival at Cypress Creek Park where kids can enjoy games, face-painting, balloon animals, and rock wall climbing. 
The Eastern Shore never shows a lack of patriotism, with Independence Day celebrations going on up and down the bay. 

Wye Plantation in Queenstown will host a Fourth of July Celebration from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. with a ceremony at the grave site of William Paca. There will also be a program in the garden with a guest speaker and music by the Chesapeake Community Band. Admission to the event is free.

Rock Hall will host an old-fashioned July 4th parade at 10 a.m. beginning on Main Street. Following the parade, folks can then head to the Rock Hall Community Center for local food, festivities, music, crafts, and more.

If you're near Chestertown on Friday, head to Fountain Park from 5-8 p.m. for an "Independents'" Day Celebration night of family fun with live music, cotton candy, sno cones, hot dogs, and more for a local. Follow up the party with a fireworks display at dusk on the Chester River. The best views are from the Chester River Bridge to the first bend below the Country Club. Wilmer Park also has great views and an opportunity to enjoy a picnic.

Georgetown residents should head to Sassafras Harbor Marina Yacht for a special boat parade where the public is encouraged to decorate their boats in red, white, and blue. The event includes fireworks at dusk.

The city of Oxford will have a fireworks display tonight at dusk with the best view coming from Tred Avon Yacht Club. 
One of the best things to do on the Fouth of July is to head out to a ballpark and catch America’s pastime. Luckily for us, our area is lush with fun options to enjoy a ballgame. The Bowie Baysox will have a Red, White & Boom Independence Day Celebration when they take on the Altoona Curve on Thursday at 6:35 p.m. at Prince George’s Stadium. The team will host a special July 3rd barbeque with all the necessary summer fixings like hamburgers, hot dogs, corn on the cob, barbeque baked beans, chips, watermelon, and more. Following the game, there will be a dazzling fireworks display behind the centerfield wall.

The Delmarva Shorebirds will host the Lakewood BlueClaws at Perdue Stadium in Salisbury for an evening showdown beginning at 6:35 p.m. Friday night. Fans can participate in a special red, white and blue jersey auction which benefits the Military Assistance Program. After the game, the longest and brightest fireworks display of the season will take place.

The Washington Nationals will take on the Chicago Cubs in an 11:05 a.m. contest as part of the team’s Patriotic Series. The team will wear their blue alternate uniforms with the curly W donning the American flag design. Fans will receive American flags as they enter Nationals Park.

Here are some more awesome events going on this Fourth of July weekend:

To view more events occurring this weekend, please browse our online calendar. Be sure to also follow What’s Up? on Twitter and like us on Facebook.