Do you love fireworks or spending time with your friends and family over a barbeque? If so, then get ready to have some fun on the 4th of July as our country gears up to celebrate its Independence Day. Whether you prefer a quiet evening relaxing and admiring the fireworks light up the night sky, or you want to get loud and enjoy a festive atmosphere, Portland has all sorts of events to offer over the 4th of July weekend.
Whether you are a local or just visiting over the weekend, it’s always wise to plan ahead so you can make the most out of your day, especially when there are tons of options to choose from. If you are unsure of where to go and what you can do, here are some of the best activities you can check out over the 4th of July Holiday that is sure to keep you festive!
Waterfront Blues Festival
If you love live music and fireworks, we have just the event for you! At the Waterfront Blues Festival located at Tom McCall Waterfront Park in downtown Portland, fireworks are launched into the air from the Willamette River for a spectacular view on either side of the river. This is one of Portland’s longest-running events, celebrating its 35th year of music and fireworks for residents and visitors alike.
On the music side of the festival, you can look forward to headliners like Grace Potter, The Phantom Blues Band, Femi Kuti, and the Wood Brothers performing for audiences beginning on July 1st through 4th. So, if you like music and fireworks together, you do not want to miss out on this spectacular event!
Location: Tom McCall Waterfront Park, 98 SW Naito Pkwy, Portland, OR 97204
Date & Time: July 1-4, 11:00 AM – 10:30 PM
Rooftop Fireworks and Music at the Metropolitan Tavern & Ballroom
What could be a better way to view fireworks than being able to view them from a high vantage yourself! Over at Hotel Eastlund, they have opened up the rooftop of the Metropolitan Tavern and Ballroom for patrons to enjoy the evening with some fireworks and music. There is a delicious barbeque buffet, and live musical performances to enjoy throughout the evening.
If you do not want to miss out on a gorgeous view of the fireworks, be sure to book your spot early. Headlining the musical events will be HIT MACHINE, making for a truly lively evening and a fantastic way to spend your 4th of July evening with friends and family.
Location: Metropolitan Tavern, 1021 NE Grand Avenue, #600, Portland, OR 97232
Date & Time: July 4-5, 7:00 PM – 12:00 AM
Scavenger Hunt Adventure
Looking to spice up the weekend leading to July 4th with your friends and family? Well, what better way there could be to have some fun than turning Portland into a giant game board? Urban Adventure Quest’s Amazing Scavenger Hunt Adventure is the perfect way to enjoy all that Portland has to offer.
Team up with your family and friends to set out on a scavenger hunt that will take you through amazing stops, such as the Arts District, Powell’s bookstore, Voodoo doughnuts, and more. Complete challenges to win lucrative rewards all the while learning about local history.
Location: Start – Pioneer Courthouse Square, End – SW 6th Avenue & SW Morrison Street
Time: Play anytime, Sunrise to Sunset
Portland Craft Beer Festival
Are you over 21 years old and looking for a fun way to spend your weekend leading up to the 4th? The Portland Craft Beer Festival opens on the 1st and runs through the 3rd, offering craft beers from dozens of breweries across the state and internationally.
This massive outdoor event features delicious foods from many food trucks to complement your drinks, making this a perfect way to spend an afternoon or evening with your buddies. Sunday is the designated Family Day, so if you have kids, this is the perfect time to come and spend time in a family-friendly atmosphere.
Location: The Fields Neighborhood Park, 1099 NW Overton St., Portland, 97209
Date & Time: July 1-3, 12:00 PM – 10:00 PM (July 1-2) & 12:00 PM – 6:00 PM (July 3)
Firework Show at Oaks Park
Are you looking for a place to enjoy a spectacular fireworks show this year? Then head on over to the Oaks Park for their late-night fireworks! Although fireworks don’t begin until 10:00 PM, buying an admission ticket to the amusement park will allow you to enjoy the rides and picnic grounds leading up to the fireworks show.
Furthermore, if you show up early, you will have a better chance of securing a great viewing spot for the firework display. If you come as a family, kids under the age of 2 will be admitted free of charge! Enjoy the rides, grab some cotton candy, and wait for the fireworks to start!
Location: 7805 SE Oaks Park Way, Portland, OR 97202
Date & Time: July 4, 10:00 PM
Portland Spirit 4th of July Fireworks Cruise
Watching the fireworks light up the night sky on the 4th of July is truly a sensational experience, and is even better with friends and family. But what if there was a way to take this experience to the next level?
Portland Spirit 4th of July Fireworks Cruise offers a way to enjoy two firework displays, one on the Willamette River aboard the Portland Spirit and the other on the Port of Cascade Locks aboard the Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler. You can catch the night sky and waterfront light up with fireworks from the Starlight Deck for a truly memorable experience!
Location: 1010 SW Naito Pkwy, Portland, OR 97204
Date and Time: July 4, 7:30 PM-10:30 PM
How to Spend Your Independence Day
Every family has their own traditions of spending the holiday together. Be that staying home watching a movie together or barbequing out in the sun — there is no right or wrong way to have a good time. That said, Portland is brimming with events across the city, from concerts and firework shows to food trucks and beer festivals if you want to spruce up your holiday this year.
If the hot dogs and soda just won’t cut it for you this 4th of July, try something new this year and consider visiting any of these events on your own or with friends and family. If this is your first time visiting Portland, this is a fantastic way to experience the city and its traditions! Wherever you end up going, you are sure to have lots of fun. Happy Independence Day!