There are many 4th of July celebrations and firework shows in Asheville and the North Carolina mountains! Below is a big list of 2016 events and festivals. Many of these will repeat in 2017. We'll post updates by March.
Downtown Asheville Independence Day Celebration 2016
Join in the fun in Park Square Park starting at 2 PM on July 4th at the Ingles Independence Day Celebration. The free festival includes performances by the Ultmiate Air Dogs again at 2, 4, 6 and 7:30 PM. Children's activities and bouncy house 2-6 PM. Splashville Fountain will be on 2-6 PM. Live music starts at 5 PM with headliner Nikki Lane country at 8 PM. Opening acts are Savannah Smith and Kevin Kinney. Beer and wine will be available for purchase. Plenty of food vendors and food trucks too. Fireworks at 9:30 PM can be best seen from the park. Bring your chair or blanket to picnic. Buy from food trucks or nearby restaurants. Parking is available in nearby parking decks, on the street or in private lots. No outside alcohol, coolers or pets in the park.
Tourist Baseball Game Fireworks (July 4th & 5th)
Watch a big fireworks show after the Asheville Tourists game. Get tickets in advance since these games will sell-out ahead of time.
South Asheville Fireworks
At Lake Julian, fireworks show starts at dark on the 4th, but come early. Bring your lawn chair or blanket and find a spot along the lake. The park offers picnic tables, grills, a sand volleyball court, two horseshoe pits, boat rental and a playground. Bring a picnic! Park at Estes Elementary School on Long Shoals Road across from the lake. From Asheville take I-26 East to Exit #37. Turn left at the light onto Long Shoals Road. Free
4th of July Celebrations & Fireworks near Asheville in the North Carolina Mountains
Bryson City: Freedom Fest is an old-fashioned Fourth of July celebration and street festival (10 AM-10 PM) in downtown Bryson City with a 5K, crafts, food, contests, live music, watermelon eating race and the best fireworks show in the Smokies. Also, go rafting or tubing nearby! Read much more on their website.
Lake Junaluska: Visit just for the day with the parade at 11 AM, BBQ lunch picnic and fireworks at 9:30 PM. Or book a four-night package at a great rate ($311/person) that includes Independence four nights lakefront on July 1-5, 3 buffet breakfasts, 3 dinners, BBQ lunch, concert, parade, boat tour, waterski show and fireworks. Go to their Web site.
Sylva: Enjoy live music and and dancing 4-9:30 PM, followed by fireworks at dark in the picturesque "all-American" small town nestled in the mountains. Stroll Main Street filled with shops, restaurants and breweries. Go to their Web site.
Lake Lure: July 3 is Independence Day festival starting at Noon at Morse Park Meadows near the beach with ice cream, funnel cakes, kettle corn and more - until fireworks at dark over lake with seating at the pavilion. On the 4th, fireworks will be at Rumbling Bald Resort for their owners and guests, but others enjoy from boats on the lake.
Banner Elk: Iconic small-town parade begins at 11 AM, starting at Lees-McRae College at ending at the town park with lunch vendors, rubber duck race and lawn games.
Beech Mountain: Fireworks on July 2nd, following their annual roasting of the hog.
Forest City: July 4th Freedom Festival at their baseball stadium, McNair Field, starts at 10 AM with crafts, games, parade, pie & hot dog eating contests, music, 7:15 PM baseball game and fireworks after.
Black Mountain will have family fun and fireworks beginning at 7 PM on July 4.
Fireworks Hike: Come celebrate the Fourth of July with an old-fashioned watermelon cutting, and view the Black Mountain fireworks display from the peak of Sunset Mountain, presented by the Swannanoa Valley Museum. Meet in parking lot of Black Mountain Savings Bank, 200 E. State St. at 6 PM. Please bring your picnic, water, a folding chair, a flash light and poncho (just in case). The Museum will transport chairs up the mountain. Carpool to the trailhead and hike 45 minutes on a moderate-easy trail to the mountaintop for your picnic and fireworks over the town. Cost is $35 for members and $50 for nonmembers. To register, call 828-669-9566.
Orchard at Altapass on Blue Ridge Parkway: July 4th, 11:00 AM-4:30 PM, Covered dish picnic open to all. Live music all day is free! Admission for the meal is a dish to share OR $10 per meal. The Orchard provides fresh barbecue, water, iced tea and paper goods. You might want to bring lawn chairs.
Brevard: Their 4th Celebration begins with the 5K/10K Firecracker Run at 8 AM. Downtown streets close for the Fine Arts & Craft Festival 9 AM-5 PM. The Classic Auto Show stretches for blocks. The Courthouse Gazebo is center stage for day-long musical entertainment. Evening fun moves a few blocks to Brevard College with AmeriCANniversary starting at 6 PM, with fireworks at 9:30 PM. Bicycle parade, hot dog eating contest and much more.
Hendersonville: July 4th Fireworks display at dark, viewable from downtown Hendersonville, with free live outdoor music 7-9 PM downtown at 201 South Main (Visitors Center).
Waynesville: The Stars and Stripes daytime celebration runs from 11 AM to 3 PM along Main Street with music and sidewalk sales on July 4. No fireworks in downtown Waynesville, but see them nearby in Maggie Valley and Lake Junaluska.
Maggie Valley: Red White & Boom, 2-11 PM! Free admission. July 4th Fireworks at 10 PM at Maggie Valley Festival Grounds.
Franklin: 4th of July Parade in Historic Downtown Franklin at 10 AM. Fireworks at dark at Macon County Veteran’s Memorial Rec Park on US Highway 441 South.
Little Switzerland: Watch or participate in their July 4th Parade at 4 PM.
More July 4th Weekend Events
Red, White and Bluegrass Festival
July 1-4, 2017: One of the top bluegrass music festivals in the South, the 2016 line-up features 20+ bands including Balsam Range, Marty Stuart and Lonesome River Band. Camping, food, crafts and more. Catawba Meadows Park (701 Sanford Dr, Morganton). Fireworks on the 4th. Daily admission starts at $25/advance and $30/gate. Four day pass is $60/advance and $75/gate. Go to their Website.
Pow Wow at Cherokee
July 1-3, 2017: Experience authentic Indian dancing, drumming and tribal regalia. Dance competitions kick the excitement up even higher. Read more about Cherokee Pow Wow.
July 4, 2016: Celebrate Independence Day with this July 4th train excursion from the Bryson City Depot at 7:30 PM, returning to the Freedom Fest for the fireworks show. See our Great Smoky Mountains Railroad Guide.
Graham County Heritage Festival
July 1-2, 2016: On the Robbinsville square with crafters, food, moonshiners, country and bluegrass music, exhibits, contests, parade 1 PM Saturday and fireworks 10 PM Saturday. Friday 11:30 AM-11:15 PM. Saturday 9 AM-11:15 PM.
Tryon International Equestrian Center Grand Prix
July 2, 2016: Watch international level riders compete in horse jumping at this new world-class campus with multiple arenas, stadium, restaurants, shops and entertainment. Laser light show! Free admission. Read more about Saturday Night Lights Grand Prix.
Mile High 4th of July
July 1-4, 2016: Neighboring towns of Banner Elk and Beech Mountain join for a variety of events all weekend: Art on the Greene, summer theatre May Poppins, roasting of the pig, fireworks, outdoor concerts, Fourth Parade & Party in the Park. Go to their Web site.
Brevard Music Center Festival Patriotic Concert
July 4, 2017: The Brevard Music Center (BMC), a summer festival led by BMC Artistic Director Keith Lockhart, with several concerts during the week of July 4th. On July 4th at 2 PM, the Transylvania Symphonic Band presents the Pendergrast Family Patriotic Pops Concert, one of the Brevard Music Center's most popular events each season features with favorite marches and patriotic tunes, a live color guard, and Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture with live cannons. Families are encouraged to arrive early and enjoy a picnic on the lawn prior to the concert. More on the Festival.
Antique Car Show in Asheville
July 1-2, 2016: Explore 18 acres of classic cars, trucks and street rods at the annual Mountaineer Antique Auto Car Show, Swap Meet & Auction (8 AM-5 PM) at the Western North Carolina Agriculture Center near the Asheville Airport. $5/person. Visit their Web site for more.
4th of July Weekend at Chimney Rock
July 1-4, 2017: Stand under Old Glory atop Chimney Rock Park for the family photo op of the year! Meet some of Grady’s live woodland friends or birds of prey, a Red-tailed hawk and Great Horned Owl, and learn about their natural habitats. Try to outwit gravity with a free climb per person on the climbing tower. Program at 2 PM. Included in park admission
Reminder: Fireworks Illegal in National Forests
Fireworks and other pyrotechnic devices are prohibited on all national grassland and national forest lands year-round, regardless of weather conditions or holidays. Regulations are enforced, and violation is punishable as a misdemeanor by a fine of not more than $5,000 or imprisonment of not more than six months, or both.