Fourth of July events around WNC

FUN ON THE FOURTH: From parades to water sports, bluegrass to worship music and fish fries to fireworks, Lake Junaluska offers a long weekend's worth of events. Photo courtesy of Lake Junaluska

While Halloween and New Year’s Eve are renegade celebrations — anything can happen — there’s a certain welcome predictability to Independence Day. Picnics, parades and fireworks displays are de rigueur; even apparel (red, white and blue!) is predicated. But patriotism never goes out of style; nor does fun in the sun. Commemorations of the Fourth are in force — here’s where to celebrate.

Events take place on Monday, July 4, unless otherwise noted. For more ideas, visit our Calendar section and


• The Asheville Downtown Association will host the Ingles Independence Day Celebration at Pack Square Park. The all-day party (noon to 10 p.m.) includes the Ultimate Air Dogs competition, bounce houses, kids activities, the Splashville fountains and live music. Pets, bicycles and coolers are not allowed, but picnics are encouraged. Fireworks begin at 9:30 p.m. Free.

The annual Mountaineer Antique Auto Car Show, Swap Meet & Auction takes place Friday and Saturday, July 1 and 2, at the Western North Carolina Agriculture Center. More than 18 acres of classic cars, hot rods and trucks are on display. The motorhead madness runs from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. $5 per day / free for children younger than 12.

• The Asheville Tourists take on the Lexington Legends at McCormick Field starting at 7:05 p.m. A fireworks display wraps up the night. $11, advance tickets are suggested.

• Arrive early to pick your spot for viewing fireworks at Lake Julian Park. Parking is at Estes Elementary School, with shuttle transportation before and after the fireworks show, which starts at dark. The park offers picnic tables, grills, a sand volleyball court, two horseshoe pits, boat rental and a playground.

Banner Elk and Beech Mountain

• The towns of Banner Elk and Beech Mountain team up to host events all weekend, Friday, July 1, through Monday, July 4. Arts and crafts, an outdoor theater performance of Mary Poppins and a pig pickin’ are on the roster. Fireworks follow the 47th annual Roasting of the Hog at Beech Mountain Resort on Saturday at 6 p.m. The weekend culminates with Banner Elk’s Party in the Park at Tate-Evans Town Park. Event prices vary.

Black Mountain, Montreat and Swannanoa

• The town of Montreat hosts its annual Independence Day parade at 10:30 a.m., while Black Mountain’s family fun and fireworks begin at 7 p.m.

• The Swannanoa Valley Museum offers a summit hike to Sunset Mountain followed by a picnic at dusk. The view from the top allows a unique perspective on the Black Mountain fireworks display. Start time is 6 p.m. $35 for members/$50 for nonmembers.

• Catch the Black Mountain fireworks display from the terrace of the White Horse Black Mountain while also taking in a concert by the Land of Sky Symphonic Band, a 43-member ensemble of  amateur and professional musicians. The show promises “instrumental repertoire ranging from stirring marches to orchestral transcriptions” starting at 7:30 p.m.  $12 advance/$15 at the door.


• The town of Brevard holds its annual 4th of July Festival with an arts showcase, classic car show, live music and a bicycle parade. The day starts with the Brevard Rotary Firecracker Run at 8 a.m. and ends with fireworks at 9:30 p.m.

• The Brevard Music Center hosts the Pendergrast Family Patriotic Pops Concert. This annual performance includes marches, a color guard and live cannons timed to the “1812 Overture.” Music starts at 2 p.m. — plan to arrive early and bring a picnic. $15-$55, advance tickets recommended.

Bryson City

• “Join us for an old-fashioned street festival” reads the invitation to Freedom Fest in Bryson City. It begins with the Rotary Club Firecracker 5K followed by arts and crafts demos, food and a watermelon eating race. The Freeway Revival and Joe Lasher Jr. perform, among others. Fireworks round out the day at 10 p.m. Free.


• Experience authentic Native American dancing, drumming and tribal culture at the annual Cherokee Powwow, Friday, July 1, to Sunday, July 3. Dance competitions offer more than $60,000 in prize money. Fireworks follow the Tiny Tots, Women’s Jingle Special, Intertribal, Spike Drapper and other contests at 7 p.m. Saturday. $12 daily/$10 with donation of three cans of food.


• “The Fourth of July is Crossnore’s biggest event,” says the community’s website. Small-town fun starts with a parade at 4 p.m. There will games for the kids, watermelon for everyone, an “old-fashioned frog-jumping contest” and a street dance at 7 p.m. Fireworks, sponsored by the volunteer fire department, go off at dark. Free.


• The Music on Main Street concert series continues with a special Fourth of July 4 edition. Bring a chair, but don’t bring pets, alcohol or coolers. The seating area opens after 5:30 p.m. and allows a view of the Jackson Park fireworks display, held at dusk. Free.

Lake Junaluska

• Lake Junaluska offers a long weekend packed full of patriotic festivities. Balsalm Range and the Lake Junaluska Singers perform evening concerts. An Anything That Floats Race, family Olympics and water ski demos number among the free activities scheduled for Saturday, July 2, through Monday, July 4. A parade and barbecue lead up to the fireworks on Monday at 9:30 p.m.

Lake Lure

•  “The mirrored reflection of the fireworks off the lake and the rumbled sounds that echo off the mountains are truly spectacular,” says the website for the Lake Lure Fireworks Celebration held Sunday, July 3. Food trucks will set up at Morse Park at noon, the Chamber of Commerce will sell souvenirs and sweets starting at 4:30, the beach will close at 6 p.m. and reopen to the public at 8 p.m. Fireworks begin at dusk. Free entry/$10 priority seating.

Maggie Valley

• The Red, White & Boom spectacular returns to the Maggie Valley Festival Grounds. The free, family-friendly events from 7-11 p.m. promise a dazzling display “at dark-thirty.”


• The Red White and Bluegrass Festival is back with three days of music and camping. The lineup for the Friday, July 1, through Monday, July 4, event includes the Lonesome River Band, Doyle Lawson & Quicksilver, Balsam Range and Marty Stuart & The Fabulous Superlatives among others. Fireworks are scheduled for 9:30 p.m. Monday. The festival takes place at Catawba Meadows Park in Morgantown. Admission at the gate is $30 daily/$75 four-day pass/$30 camping permit per day.


• Last year saw the return of fireworks to downtown Sylva after a seven-year hiatus. The show is back this Independence Day at dark. It’s preceeded by performances by country artist Joe Lasher Jr. (4-6 p.m.) and R&B group Groovetown (6:30-9:45 p.m.) at Bridge Park Pavillion, along with food, drinks and children’s activities. Free.


The Stars and Stripes Celebration runs from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. with live music and sidewalk sales. A patriotic kids parade down Main Street kicks off the festivities, followed by a cookout in the United Community Bank parking lot.


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One thought on “Fourth of July events around WNC

  1. This is Lisa from I wanted to note an important correction to the Lake Lure fireworks info included in your story. Important times are as follows:

    Water Park closes at 5:30pm
    Beach closes at 6:00pm
    Beach will REOPEN for fireworks viewing at 8:00pm
    Fireworks begin at dark

    Thank you for including us in this great story! Happy 4th to you all.

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