Celebrating July 4th in the Florida Keys is as unique as the Keys themselves. There are not too many places in the country where you can watch the fireworks over the water or even from the deck of a boat while downing a few margaritas or bottles of beer.
Here is a list of the activities from Key Largo to Key West. Usually the roads get a trifle crowded during the holidays but, since July 4th falls mid-week this year, the crowds might not be as large. In any case, plan your trip in advance as hotels book up quickly in the summer months. (Just a note: Remember your insect repellant as mosquitos are prevalent in the summer months)
Key Largo / July 4
37th Annual Fourth of July Parade: “America: Yesterday, Today and Forever”
What is the 4th of July without a parade! Key Largo’s parade, including floats of all shapes and sizes, gets rolling at 10AM from the parking lot of Anthony’s Clothing Store, MM 98.2, and travels up Overseas Highway to MM 100 by the Holiday Inn. There is also a community picnic held at the Murray Nelson Government & Cultural Center at MM102 between 5-8PM.
At 10PM, the fireworks show begins over the waters of Blackwater Sound. The beautiful mirror-like surface of the bay provides a dazzling 3D display sure to please. The best seating can be found at Sundowners and Senior Frijoles restaurants, Caribbean Club and Marriott Key Largo Bay Resort, all located around mile marker (MM) 104 bayside. Reservations are suggested because seating is limited. Contact Sue Finney 305-394-3736 for more information.
Islamorada / July 4
Fireworks and Family Fun at Founders Park
If you are vacationing in Islamorada, stop by Founders Park at MM 87, for their 4th Annual Independence Day Celebration, fun for the entire family (including the dog). There will be entertainment and activities from 6- 9:30PM with a fireworks show after dark. Guests that are staying at participating resorts will be able to get in free, all others will be $10.
Marathon/ July 4
Start your celebration with a patriotic parade beginning at 10:30AM from Marathon High School, MM50, and ending at Sombrero Beach. Then stick around for some fun with free admission to Sombrero Beach’s party featuring entertainment, food, drinks and plenty of arts and crafts.
Later in the evening, bring your blankets and chairs and watch the fireworks from Sombrero Beach or opt for premium seating on the water with Tilden’s July Funboats. Make a reservation with Tilden and you will receive free transportation to and from the docks, as long as you are staying in the Marathon area, along with champagne, wine, beer, appetizers and snacks. All this for only $75 per person and the avoidance of parking hassles or carrying chairs and beverages to the beach. . Make a reservation today by calling 305-743-7255.
Big Pine & the Lower Keys / July 4
If you are in the Big Pine Area on July 4th, head to Sugarloaf Airport, MM17 bayside, around 5PM for live music, food, beverages, games and other activities. Admission is free and you might even catch a glimpse of the quirky bat tower next door. At 9PM there will be a fireworks display to end it all with a bang. Note: There will be no coolers, pets or personal fireworks allowed.
Key West / July 4
28th Annual Hospice/Visiting Nurses Association July 4th Picnic
Join in the celebration with a picnic hosted by Casa Marina Resort & Beach Club, 1500 Reynolds St. overlooking the Atlantic Ocean. The buffet begins at 5PM with offering of all the traditional items – hamburgers, hot dogs and all the fixings. Cost is $25 per adult and $10 per child between the ages of 3-12. Other family fun activities including live music, children’s games and free watermelon, popcorn and cold drinks will round out the day. You can participate in all the family fun activities even if you don’t opt for the picnic with a general admission ticket of $10. If you want something a little more upscale, opt for the more lavish buffet and reserved beachfront seats for $125 per person. To finish off the evening, ohh and ahh at the colorful fireworks display beginning at 9PM. For more information and reservations call 305-294-8812.
Have a safe and fun July 4th!