Arizona Celebrates Independence Day 2012
By Judy Hedding, About.com Guide
All dates, times, prices and offerings are subject to change without notice.
- The Biggest Fireworks Shows
- Community Events - Part 1
- Community Events - Part 2
- At a Glance
- 4th of July at Local Attractions
- 4th of July at Local Resorts - Take a Staycation!
- Take a Day Trip for a Cooler 4th of July
- Before and After July 4th
- 4th of July Photo Galleries
- Wanted: Your Photos and Your Opinion
- What Kind of Weather Will We Have?
- 4th of July Party Recipes from Local Arizona Chefs
The Biggest Fireworks Shows
For many people, it wouldn't be a 4th of July celebration without fireworks, and we have plenty fireworks shows all around the Valley of the Sun that you can attend. These are two of the largest and best attended events with fireworks in the Phoenix area. They are usually televised. Both are accessible by METRO Light Rail.
- Tempe Town Lake Festival (Tempe)
- The Fabulous Phoenix Fourth (Phoenix)
- Take METRO Light Rail To These Two Events
- Where To Stay Near the Tempe Town Lake Festival
- Where To Stay Near the Fabulous Phoenix Fourth
Community Events - Part 1
Nearly every community in Arizona has some sort of activity or event for the 4th of July. Some are small and focus on children's activities, some have live music or swimming or rides. You are certain to find one (or two or three) near you where your family can celebrate our nation's independence. Many of these events are free!
Note: the cities and towns listed here may or may not be official sponsors of the events.
- Ahwatukee - Bike Parade
- Ahwatukee - Red, White and Boom
- Anthem - Independence Day Celebration
- Apache Junction - Hometown 4th of July Celebration
- Buckeye - Old Fashioned 4th of July
- Casa Grande - Family Fun Day
- Cave Creek - Fireworks at Harold's Corral
- Chandler - 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular
- Fountain Hills - Fourth at the Fountain
- Florence - 4th of July Freedom Parade / 4th of July Rock ‘n’ Roll Freedom Fest
- Gilbert - Fire in the Sky
Community Events - Part 2
There are so many community Independence Day events that I needed a second section to cover them all!
- Goodyear - Star Spangled 4th
- Litchfield Park - Great American Picnic and Fireworks Show
- Maricopa - Great American Barbecue
- Mesa - Arizona Celebration of Freedom
- Peoria - All American Festival
- Phoenix - Light Up the Sky
- Queen Creek - Family 4th on the Farm
- Surprise - 4th of July Celebration
- Tolleson - Fourth of July Celebration
- Wickenburg - Fireworks & Family Fun Celebration
At a Glance
Looking for fireworks? Live music? Water play for the kids? These pages will give you that information at a glance, so you can find the event that best suits you.
- At a Glance - Festivals and Events With Free Admission
- At a Glance - Festivals and Events With an Admission Charge, Even If It Is Small
4th of July at Local Attractions
Some of our local Phoenix area attractions have 4th of July celebrations that are definitely worth considering. You might have to pay admission or buy a ticket to these Independence Day events, but you are sure to have a great time. Wear your red, white and blue!
- Salt River Fields Music Festival
- A Star Spangled Shootout at Rawhide
- Independence Day Celebration and Fireworks at Lake Pleasant
- 4th of Zoo-ly at the Phoenix Zoo
- Independence Day Weekend Fireworks & BBQ at Wet 'n' Wild
- Hollywood & Wine at The Arizona Biltmore: Clint Black
- Independence Day at Jester'Z Improv (June 29 & 30)
- Independence Day at National Comedy Theater Improv (June 29 & 30)
4th of July at Local Resorts - Take a Staycation!
What if you could take your family on a mini-vacation at one of our beautiful Phoenix or Scottsdale local resorts, enjoy a special 4th of July celebration and get a great rate, too? That's exactly what you can do at these hotels and resorts. Save the gas, save the airfare -- in some cases you can even bring the family pet!
- Fourth of July Freedom Fest at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess
- Red, White and Boom Block Party at the Sheraton Wild Horse Pass
- Star-Spangled Celebration at the Hyatt Regency Scottsdale
- Independence Day Celebration at W Scottsdale
Take a Day Trip for a Cooler 4th of July
If heading north for some cooler temperatures is on your agenda for the 4th of July, here are some ideas for unique Arizona Independence Day experiences within a couple of hours from Phoenix.
Before and After July 4th
There are often special events in the Phoenix metro area in the days preceding and the days after 4th of July, especially when the holiday occurs mid-week. If you are looking for other unique activities that week, here are some suggestions.
- Summer Spectacular ArtWalk on July 5, 2012 (Scottsdale)
- First Friday on July 6, 2012 (Phoenix)
- Motorcycles on Main on July 6, 2012 (Mesa)
- Shows, Concerts and Plays in July
- Other Festivals and Events in July
- Find a Public Swimming Pool in Greater Phoenix
- Arizona Rookie League Baseball
- Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field (Phoenix)
- Phoenix Mercury at US Airways Center (Phoenix)
- Arizona Rattlers at US Airways Center (Phoenix)
The fireworks laws that went into effect in 2010 in Arizona are confusing at best. You can buy fireworks, but you can't use most of them! Even the consumer fireworks, like sparklers, may be prohibited on private property or at community events. You can get all the details here, but take my advice -- forget about buying fireworks. If you don't buy or use fireworks, you know that you won't end up in any emergency room and you won't start any fires.
You can, however, leave it to the professionals and take your camera with you. Take a look at some of the pictures at neighborhood celebrations submitted by About.com Phoenix readers. You can even submit your own photos!
4th of July Photo Galleries
See pictures of many of the Independence Day celebrations that are held around town and some of the spectacular fireworks associated with those events. Of course, since I am not a time-traveler, these photos will not be from the upcoming 4th of July event; they are from past events. Therefore, the activities depicted in the photos might not be exactly the same for this upcoming holiday. Still, the festival photos should give you a hint about what kind of event it is, so you can tell if you'd like to attend.
Wanted: Your Photos and Your Opinion
Hopefully you are bringing your camera along to whichever 4th of July festivity you'll be attending. If you got some adorable shots of your kid wearing a cute balloon hat, or Fido wearing a Statue of Liberty costume, or some fabulous fireworks, you can submit those to me for inclusion in the 4th of July Photo Gallery.
Also, here's where you get to have your say, and where you can see what other people think, about our 4th of July activities. Is there one that you go to every year? Do you like the fireworks the best? Do you have a special rooftop or public viewing spot where you always go to see the fireworks? Do you take public transportation to events, or is that a hassle? Here's where you can share you opinions, complaints and tips about celebrating the 4th of July in Greater Phoenix.
What Kind of Weather Will We Have?
Well, it's July in the desert, so it is safe to say that the weather will be -- hot. How hot? My crystal ball is out of commission, but you should know that wherever you go, bring a bottle of water and wear a hat and sunscreen for daytime events. Heat-related illnesses are serious, and there are people who drop from the heat every year at 4th of July events. Don't spend your Independence Day with the paramedics!
4th of July Party Recipes from Local Arizona Chefs
Try one of these 4th of July party recipes, provided courtesy of various local chefs around the Greater Phoenix area.
- Red, White and Blue Potato Salad
- Patriotic Cheesecake Parfait
- Cocktail: Prickly Pear Mojito
- Cocktail: Hangar One Blueberry Cooler
- Cocktail: Southern Lemonade
- Cocktail: Modern Margarita