Where to see fireworks, watch parades and eat around the 650.

Fireworks burst in the skies over Shoreline Amphitheatre at the San Francisco Symphony’s annual Fourth of July concert. (Photo by Natalia Nazarova)

Events across the Peninsula will be taking place in person this year to mark Independence Day. From concerts to fireworks, there are a variety of ways to enjoy Fourth of July festivities over the course of the holiday weekend, with many events returning after a two-year absence due to the pandemic. Here’s our guide to Independence Day weekend in the Peninsula:

East Palo Alto 39th City Anniversary and Independence Day Parade: An Independence Day parade and march for peace kicks off festivities for East Palo Alto as the city marks its 39th anniversary. The parade starts at Cesar Chavez-Ravenswood Middle School and concludes at Bell Street Park, where an event features food, vendors, music, plus games and swimming at the YMCA located in the park.

East Palo Alto 39th City Anniversary and Independence Day Parade July 2. Parade starts at 10 a.m. and the event runs 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Parade begins at Cesar Chavez-Ravenswood Middle School, 2450 Ralmar Ave., and event takes place at Bell Street Park, 550 Bell St. in East Palo Alto.

Loma Mar Store & Kitchen Independence Day Picnic: Head to Loma Mar for a special Independence Day barbecue menu with both meat and vegan options. Two Bay Area bands, Pathetic Honey String Band and Gary Gates Band, will provide live music for this outdoor event in the redwoods. 

Loma Mar Store & Kitchen Independence Day Picnic July 3 from 11:30 a.m.-6 p.m. at Loma Mar Store & Kitchen, 8150 Pescadero Creek Road in Loma Mar. 

Redwood City’s Chalk Full of Fun Festival welcomes amateurs and professionals alike to make chalk art. (Photo courtesy Khoi Huynh)

Chalk Full of Fun Festival: Visitors can stop by Courthouse Square to check out — or make — some chalk art. Whether professional or amateur, everyone is welcome to draw on the square and on the street, as long as space is available. Those who wish to preregister can reserve their spot on the website.

Chalk Full of Fun Festival July 3-4 from 8 a.m.-5 p.m. at Courthouse Square on Broadway and on Hamilton Streets in Redwood City.

Redwood City Fourth of July Celebration: A $10 pancake breakfast at the Marshall Street fire station kicks off festivities at 8 a.m., followed by the annual parade at 10 a.m with floats, bands, drill teams and baton corps. A daylong festival downtown will include arts and crafts vendors and kids’ activities, and the festivities conclude with a fireworks display over the Port of Redwood City.

Redwood City Fourth of July Celebration July 4 from 8 a.m.-10 p.m in downtown Redwood City and at the Port of Redwood City.

Cupertino Fourth of July Celebration: If you’re looking for a packed day of events for the whole family, celebrate the 4th in Cupertino. Start off the morning with a pancake breakfast at the Quinlan Community Center, then make your way over to Memorial Park for the children’s parade. Spend the afternoon cooling off in the pool at Blackberry Farm, and end the day by watching fireworks at Creekside Park. 

City of Cupertino Independence Day Celebration July 4 from 7:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m.

Pacifica Rocket Run: Start your festivities early with Pacifica’s annual 5-mile Rocket Run race. All ages and abilities are welcome.

Pacifica Rocket Run Monday, July 4. Check-in begins at 8 a.m. and the race starts at 9 a.m. at the Pacifica Community Center, 540 Crespi Drive. The preregistration fee is $20 and day-of registration is $25.

Half Moon Bay hosts an annual Fourth of July parade down Main Street. (Photo courtesy Miramar Events)

Half Moon Bay Ol’ Fashioned Parade: Start the day on the coast with a pancake breakfast at 8 a.m. Attendees can gather on Main Street at noon to see floats, classic cars, horses and more march along the parade route. Stick around for the 40-member Sitting Marching Band’s performance and a block party. 

Half Moon Bay Ol’ Fashioned 4th of July Parade & Block Party July 4 starting at noon on Main Street in Half Moon Bay. 

Palo Alto July 4th Celebration: The city of Palo Alto hosts a free festival in the park. Attendees can enjoy music from Radio the City All-Stars and DJ Verz. The city isn’t hosting its annual Chili Cook-Off this year, but there will still be plenty of food, with food trucks on hand that include Twister Food Truck, The Cookout 650 and The Waffle Roost. The event also offers games and activities for kids.

Palo Alto July 4th Celebration July 4 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. at Mitchell Park, 600 E. Meadow Drive in Palo Alto.

Los Altos Hills Fourth of July Parade: The city of Los Altos Hills presents its 11th annual Fourth of July parade, starting at Town Hall on Fremont Avenue. The parade will finish at Gardner Bullis Elementary School, where guests will be treated to watermelon. Parade-goers are asked to leave their fossil-fueled vehicles and horses at home.

Los Altos Hills Fourth of July Parade July 4 from 9:30-11 a.m. at Los Altos Hills Town Hall, 26379 Fremont Ave. in Los Altos. 

70th Annual Woodside Junior Rodeo: Celebrating 70 years, this Woodside tradition will feature events such as barrel racing and pole-bending. For non-competitors, pony rides, a petting zoo and a mechanical bull will be available for entertainment. 

70th Annual Woodside Junior Rodeo July 4 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Mounted Patrol of San Mateo County, 521 Kings Mountain Road in Woodside.

Kids often play outside Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View before the Fourth of July fireworks show. (Photo by Natalia Nazarova)

Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular: Revelers can cap off their Fourth of July celebrations at Shoreline Amphitheatre with a concert and a fireworks spectacular, presented by the San Francisco Symphony. The program will include pieces from children’s movies, such as “Coco” and “Frozen” and, of course, “The Star-Spangled Banner.”

Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular July 4 from 8-11 p.m. at Shoreline Amphitheatre, One Amphitheatre Parkway in Mountain View.

Los Gatos Symphony in the Park July 4: Grab food from local food trucks and spend time in the park with friends and family while listening to the San Jose Wind Symphony. Family-friendly activities, including bounce houses and the Billy Jones Wildcat Railroad and Carousel, will also run during the event. 

Los Gatos Symphony in the Park Monday, July 4, from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at Oak Meadow Park, 233 Blossom Hill Road in Los Gatos. 

Foster City Fourth of July Celebration July 4: Spend the holiday at Foster City’s all-day celebration, complete with food trucks, a family-and-dog parade, family-friendly games and live music at the Leo Ryan Park Amphitheater. Wrap up the festivities by watching fireworks over the Foster City lagoon. 

Foster City Fourth of July Celebration Monday, July 4, from 9 a.m.-9:30 p.m.

Great America Fourth of July Celebration July 4: Great America offers daylong entertainment for all ages. With dozens of roller coasters, a water park, carnival games and more,, the amusement park has no shortage of things to do – and it hosts a fireworks display before the park closes for the day. The park is also hosting an all-you-can-eat backyard cookout for the holiday at a cost of $30 per person.

California’s Great America Fourth of July Celebration Monday, July 4, from 10 a.m.-10 p.m. at California’s Great America, 4701 Great America Parkway in Santa Clara. 

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THE SIX FIFTY staff

Sometimes our work is a collaborative effort, hence the "staff" byline. The best of what to eat, see and do on the SF Peninsula.

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