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Where to see fireworks and celebrate the 4th of July in the Triangle

The chemistry of fireworks

Here's a 90-second chemistry lesson on fireworks and what produces the different colors and patterns.
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Here's a 90-second chemistry lesson on fireworks and what produces the different colors and patterns.

Nearly every town in the Triangle will have a Fourth of July celebration either over the weekend or next week. From Raleigh’s big downtown celebration – The ‘Works – to Durham fireworks at the Bulls game and Cary’s celebration with the N.C. Symphony, here’s your guide to fireworks, festivals and parades across Wake, Durham, Orange, Johnston and Chatham counties.

July 1

Archer Lodge – Family Fun Day at Archer Lodge (14094 Buffalo Road, Clayton) will have a pageant, a parade and fireworks. 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Info:

July 2

Hillsborough – Picnic in the Park runs 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Eno River Farmer’s Market. Catch live music, food trucks, crafts, yard games and a community reading of the Declaration of Independence. Info:

Pittsboro – The annual Pittsboro Summerfest at the Pittsboro Business Association will feature a parade, a watermelon seed spitting contest, face painting and a pie throwing contest. The event, which runs 2-8 p.m., will also have an artisan fair and market and two concert stages. Info:

Smithfield – Smithfield’s Fourth of July Celebration on Third Street has fireworks, crafts, relays, sidewalk chalk and face painting. 6:30-9:30 p.m. Info:

July 3

Fuquay-Varina – Gates to South Park open at 6 p.m. and a free concert featuring Spare Change begins at 7. There will be fireworks, inflatables and food vendors. Bring a blanket or chair to watch the fireworks. Alcohol is prohibited. Info:

Garner – The celebration, featuring performances by the N.C. Symphony and Bull City Syndicate, starts at 5 p.m. at Lake Benson Park (921 Buffaloe Road). The evening will end with fireworks. There will be concessions provided by local nonprofit organizations, as well as crafts and inflatables for children. Alcohol and glass containers are prohibited. Info:

Morrisville – Gates open at 6 p.m. and fireworks begin at dark in Morrisville Community Park. There will be food trucks. Bring a chair or blanket. Alcohol and glass containers are prohibited. Info:

Wake Forest – Fireworks and food vendors will be highlights of the event, which will take place at Wake Forest High School Stadium, and The Band of Oz will perform beach music at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $5 and available for purchase online; children 6 and under get in free. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. There will also be a children’s parade at 10:30 a.m. along North Main Street and West Juniper Avenue. At Holding Park starting at 11 a.m., there will be games, crafts and giant inflatables. Bring cash. Alcoholic beverages and smoking are prohibited. Info:

Zebulon – There will be fireworks after the Carolina Mudcats games Monday and Tuesday at Five County Stadium. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. each day with the game starting at 7. A ticket is required for the game and fireworks. Tickets start at $10. Info:

July 4

Apex – The annual Olde Fashioned Fourth of July runs 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. with a Parade of Wheels at noon, which children 12 and under can take part in. Other activities include inflatables, karaoke and face painting. Pets are not allowed. Info:

Benson ––Benson’s July 4th Celebration takes place at Benson Singing Grove (400 E. Main St.) 5:30-9:30 p.m. There will be food, games, entertainment, live music, a raffle and fireworks. Info: 919-894-5117.

Brier Creek – The Show Us Your Stripes Block Party will take place 7 to 9 p.m. at the Brier Creek Commons Clock Tower Plaza, featuring games, bounce houses and face painting. Fireworks will start after dark. Info:

Carrboro – The activities will commence at 9:30 a.m. on Weaver Street Market Lawn. A parade from Weaver Street Market to Town Hall will start at 10:50 a.m. There will be live music, a costume contest, inflatables, sack races, a water-balloon toss and bingo for seniors. Info:

Cary – From 3 to 10 p.m., the town will have its celebration in Koka Booth Amphitheatre. There will be watermelon eating contests, a Ferris wheel, a scavenger hunt and music by the N.C. Symphony and the Cary Town Band. Fireworks will start after the symphony’s 7:30 p.m. performance. The event is free, save for some of the amusement rides and pub tables. Pets, hula hoops and weapons are prohibited. Info:

Chapel Hill – Fireworks will start at 9:30 p.m. in Kenan Memorial Stadium on UNC’s campus. Gates open at 7 p.m. and other festivities include a watermelon eating contest, face painting, stiltwalkers and food trucks. The suggested donation to help offset costs is $1 for an individual and $5 for a family. No outside food or drink is allowed. Info:

Cleveland – Celebrate Cleveland starts at 9 a.m. at 9046 Cleveland Road (JCC Cleveland Campus).

Clayton – Catch food vendors, raffles, basketball competitions, cornhole and inflatables at Municipal Park (325 McCullers Drive) starting at 4 p.m. Fireworks will start after dark. Live music, inflatables and rides will continue after the fireworks. Info:

Durham – Durham’s Independence Day Celebration, sponsored by Durham Parks and Recreation and the Durham Bulls, includes baseball, fireworks, food and fun. Fireworks happen after the game, and tickets to the game are strongly encouraged, as the gates will open during the 7th inning for general admission based on availability. Tailgating, alcohol in parking decks and watching from parking decks are prohibited. Areas where the game can be viewed outside the ballpark are Tobacco Road Sports Cafe, the grassy area behind Diamond 3, Ponysaurus and Burt’s Bees, outside of the North Deck. Info:

Additionally, the Children’s Independence Day Parade at Durham Central Park starts at 9:30 a.m. (prep), followed by fire truck tours and free popsicles. Info:

Kenly – The celebration starts at 8 p.m. at Kenly 95 Petro (923 Johnston Parkway). Info: 919-284-2116.

Knightdale – The band Chairman of the Board will headline the celebration, and there will be food trucks. The event begins at 5 p.m., with shuttles to the Knightdale Station Park beginning at 4. Fireworks start at 9:15 in Knightdale Station Park. Info:

Pine Level – The celebration runs 10 a.m.-10 p.m. at Sam Godwin Recreation Park (U.S. 70-A). Info: 919-965-2284.

Raleigh – The ‘Works will have festivities from noon to 10 p.m. on Fayetteville Street and at Red Head Amphitheater. Fireworks will start around 9:30. Contests include patriotic pooch, watermelon seed spitting, ice cream eating and a hot dog eating. There will be a beer garden and live music including The Connells and DJ Dousro. Info:

Selma – The 14th Annual All-American Festival takes place at Historic Selma Union Depot (500 Railroad St.) 5-10 p.m. Info: 919-975-1411.

Zebulon – There will be fireworks after the Carolina Mudcats game at Five County Stadium. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. with the game starting at 7. A ticket is required for the game and fireworks. Tickets start at $10. Info:

July 5

Holly Springs – From 5 to 9:30 p.m. at Jefferson L. Sugg Farm at Bass Lake Park, there will be patriotic festivities including fireworks at 9:15, face painting, live music and inflatables. Friendly pets on leashes are welcome. Bringing fireworks, including sparklers, is prohibited. Info:

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