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Fireworks light up the night sky above the Philadelphia Museum of Art during a 4th of July celebration.

Celebrate July Fourth in Philadelphia

Play Video 4th of July Fireworks. Photo by Ed Newton for Live Nation.
Date June 5, 2024

Celebrate July Fourth in Philadelphia

Fireworks light up the night sky above the Philadelphia Museum of Art during a 4th of July celebration.

There is no better place to celebrate July Fourth than in Philadelphia, the city where it all began.

On July 4, 1776, the Founding Fathers met in Philadelphia to sign the Declaration of Independence, giving birth to a new nation. With historic landmarks, such as Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell, Philadelphia is a captivating backdrop to commemorate America’s birthday. Embracing the essence of liberty, unity, and independence, Philadelphia invites individuals from all walks of life to celebrate freedom.

Explore Independence Mall

The part of Philadelphia where the Founding Fathers debated, drafted, and forged the Declaration of Independence remains in many places historically accurate and faithfully unchanged. Independence National Historic Park in Old City houses a collection of sites significant to the nation’s founding. Visitors can walk the same paths as George Washington and Benjamin Franklin in Independence Mall — America’s “most historic square mile.”

Situated on Independence Mall is Independence Hall, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, where the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution were adopted. Also on the Mall is the President’s House, the former residence of Presidents George Washington and John Adams while in office.

In the center is Independence Hall, a historical building. It is tall and made out of red bricks with white architectural details. Green trees hang on either side. The sky above is white. A clock is shown toward the top and in the middle of the building.

Independence Hall. Photo by K. Huff for PHLCVB.

Below the house, a prominent display tells the story of the enslaved people who built and worked there. The exhibit examines the paradox of slavery and freedom in the new nation. Next to the President’s House is the home of the Liberty Bell, a dramatic symbol of American freedom.

Near Independence Mall is the home of alledged American flag maker Betsy Ross. There, you can meet the famed seamstress herself as she retells her revolutionary story. And only a block away, you can stroll along the carefully preserved Elfreth’s Alley, the nation’s oldest continuously inhabited street.

Celebrate at Wawa Welcome America

Every year from Juneteenth (June 19) to July 4, Wawa Welcome America hosts a series of family-friendly events to celebrate the two holidays. Free museums are a staple of the sixteen-day festival, where visitors can enter the African American Museum in Philadelphia, the Science History Institute, and other museums for free on select days. Other seasonal celebrations across the city include neighborhood block parties, fitness classes, and a children’s concert.

Philadelphia pulls out all the stops on the holiday itself with the Salute To Independence Day Parade. Guests can enjoy lavish floats, dance performances, and historical reenactments as the parade travels down Market Street to Broad Street.

The grand finale of the two-week celebration is the July 4th concert and fireworks spectacular on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Each year, a star-studded lineup rocks the parkway with a breathtaking fireworks display closing out the night. In previous years, headliners who have graced the stage include The Roots, Mary J Blige, and Pitbull.

Fireworks light up the night sky above the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The Benjamin Franklin Parkway is packed with people. The stage in front of the museum lights up with red, white, and blue lights.

4th of July fireworks light up the sky above the Philadelphia Museum of Art and Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Photo by G. Widman for Visit Philadelphia.

July 4 in Philadelphia is a can’t miss experience, but the fun doesn’t stop there. Discover more summer activities that will make your trip to Philadelphia truly unforgettable.