July 4th celebrations across Modesto, Mother Lode regions

Families and friends gathered on the shores of Woodward Reservoir just outside of Oakdale during a past year’s Fourth of July fireworks show.
Families and friends gathered on the shores of Woodward Reservoir just outside of Oakdale during a past year’s Fourth of July fireworks show. Modesto Bee

Bombs will burst in air across the region as the nation rejoices in its independence over the long Fourth of July weekend.

Communities across Modesto and the Mother Lode will gather to mark the July 4th holiday with pyrotechnics, parades and festivals. Here’s a roundup of the greater area’s events where you can join in to put your patriotism on display; events are on July 4, with otherwise noted dates for weekend-long celebrations in Gustine and Livingson:


The 142nd annual Fourth of July Celebration includes a parade and festival. The parade theme – complete with marching bands, floats, performers and more – is “United WE Stand!” and Chris Murphy serves as grand marshal. After the parade the second annual All American Festival kicks off with a flag-raising ceremony by the American Legion, then kids activities, live music, food, demonstrations and craft booths. Both events are organized by the Modesto Kiwanis Club. Parade: 9:30 a.m. from 10th and F streets to J Street, then up 11th Street and back to I Street. Festival: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Tenth Street Plaza.

Fireworks shows will follow the evening Modesto Nuts games against the Bakersfield Blaze on Saturday and Sunday, July 2-3. The team is away on July 4. Game times 7:05 p.m. John Thurman Field, 601 Neece Drive, Modesto. Admission is $6 to $12.


The day begins with a street fair and market in Central Park from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. with a kids zone and live music. A traditional Fourth of July parade down Main Street will begin at 10 a.m. and a car show will be held at Broadway and Market Street beginning at 11:30 a.m. In the evening, the fun moves to California State University, Stanislaus, where activities for children begin at 7 p.m. leading up to the big fireworks show from the campus’ Pergola Meadows at dusk. Food and nonalcoholic drinks are allowed on campus, but no barbecues or outside fireworks.,


Watch the pyrotechnics waterside during the annual Woodward Fireworks Celebration. Arrive early, because upon reaching capacity, the park will be closed to all inbound traffic. Fireworks begin at sundown. Attendees should plan to stay inside the park until the fireworks end. Woodward Reservoir, 14528 26 Mile Road. $25 per carload. 209-525-6750.


The 4th of July Celebration at Mistlin Park features food venders, a kids zone, live music, flag tribute, light show and – of course – fireworks. Sponsored by the Ripon Chamber of Commerce, events begin at 5 p.m. at the park, 1201 W. River Road. Free.


Fireworks will go off over Big League Dreams sports park to celebrate Independence Day. Gates to the park open at 7 p.m., fireworks will start at dusk, about 9:45 p.m. 1077 Milo Candini Drive. $2. 209-456-8600.


The Run for Independence starts the day at 7:30 a.m. A parade starts at 9 a.m. at Foster’s Freeze on Winton Way and ends at Ralston Park. The festival at Ralston Park is from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., with entertainment from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The national anthem will be sung at 11. Gates at Castle Airport open at 6 p.m. for a concert by Max Yasgur’s Farm followed by a fireworks show. Castle admission is $5 per carload. Bring lawn chairs and blankets. Gates close at 9 for fireworks. 209-358- 2260.


(July 2-4) Gustine starts a weekend-long celebration with the West Side 5K Color Run on July 2 beginning at 8 a.m. at Gustine High School, 501 North Ave. and traveling through city streets. On July 3, the annual FFA tractor pull will be held from 6 to 10:30 p.m. at the high school; cost is $10 general, $5 ages 12 and under. On July 4, festivities start with a parade at 10:30 a.m. on Fifth Street to Henry Miller Park, which is set to include a flyover from Lemoore Navel Base. There will be activities at the park after the parade until 3 p.m., including a frog jump contest, fun for kids and music. Later, fireworks at the Gustine High football field begin at dusk. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. for fireworks. 209-854-6975.


(July 1-4) Livingston will hold a four-day independence celebration with a carnival, live music and fireworks. The carnival begins July 1 from 6 p.m. to midnight at the Max Foster Sports Complex, 2600 Walnut Ave. and continues July 2-3 from 3 p.m. to midnight and July 4 from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m. On July 2 there also will be a car show from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the sports complex. Live entertainment includes Baby Bash and Adrian Marcel on July 2; La Original Banda El Limon on July 3; and Boston Rocks on July 4. Fireworks will begin at dusk on the 4th.


Columbia’s Glorious 4th of July Celebration festivities begin with a ceremonial flag raising and black powder musket salute at 11 a.m. just north of the gazebo on Main Street. The Great Mother Lode Brass & Reed Band will play from 11-11:45 a.m. before a parade begins at noon running along Main Street. For the kids, there will be greased pole climbing, a bucket brigade and cake walk. Other contests include nail pounding, watermelon and pie eating, egg relay race and egg toss, and a five-way tug-of-war. Barbecue lunch at 1 p.m. is $10 general and $5 for children under 10. Sponsored by the Columbia Chamber of Commerce. 209-536-1672.


Ironstone Vineyards’ 4th of July Celebration features live entertainment, family fun with bounce houses, climbing walls and face painting as well as food and beverages. There will be performances by Jill and the Giants, Brian Jirka and the Cabby Band. Gates open at 2 p.m., and fireworks begin at dusk. Adults $15, children 6-12 $5, children 5 and under free. 209-728-1251,


The community-inclusive 4th of July Parade is open to all. Registration and a patriotic singalong begin at 11 a.m., with a parade at 11:30 on Meadow Lane. Everyone is welcome to participate. Just pick up an application at All That Matters in downtown Twain Harte or at the registration desk by Cal Fire on the day of the event. 209-586-1976,


The Fourth of July Concert and Barbecue returns featuring the Calaveras Community Band playing patriotic favorites, marches, Latin, Dixieland and swing tunes. Before the concert, a barbecue will be served from 5 to 6 p.m. for $15. Admission to concert is free and the show begins at 6:30 p.m.


A 4th of July Parade and Celebration festivities begin with a pancake breakfast at the Town Hall from 7:30 to 11 a.m. Eggs, ham, pancakes, orange juice and coffee will be served for $5 and helps support the Veteran’s Memorial District maintain town parks. The parade starts at 11 a.m. on Main Street with more food, music and vendors. Free.

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