5 Pittsburgh-Based Activities to do This Fourth of July

By Serena Garcia, Staff Writer

It’s time to get out your red, white and blue, because the Fourth of July is finally here. Although it may be hard to celebrate the USA with all that is going on, you can still try to have fun this holiday weekend. Whether it’s seeing fireworks, listening to live music or enjoying the summer heat, there are all kinds of July 4 activities happening throughout Pittsburgh. If you find yourself having trouble looking for your proper Fourth of July activity, listed below are five suggestions. 

  1. Watch the fireworks pop

What would Fourth of July be without fireworks? Fireworks are the absolute staple to any Independence Day celebration. If you find yourself searching for the fireworks display, you are in luck. In Pittsburgh, there are so many different places to watch red, white and blue fireworks light up the night sky. Some spots that you can visit to get the best views this weekend include the Mount Washington lookout, the Point and down by the Northshore. 

If you don’t feel like venturing out you can watch The City of Pittsburgh Independence Day Fireworks from your home television via WPXI-TV or listen to it on 100.1 FM KDKA. Or if you find yourself wanting to do something different this holiday weekend, you may want to check out the firework display at Kennywood

This weekend from July 1-4, the amusement park will be featuring a firework display every night beginning at 10:15 p.m. located at the Lagoon. Not only will Kennywood be extending their park hours, but it is also offering free admission for military members – active duty, retired and veterans with ID – and also giving discounted admission for military members’ family and friends, which you can find more information about here

No matter how you see them, fireworks are quintessential to celebrating the Fourth of July. For a list of all of the firework displays happening this weekend in Pittsburgh’s surrounding areas, click here.

  1. Attend “Fourth at the Fort” 

Fourth at the Fort is an annual event that occurs on July 4 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Held at the Fort Pitt Museum, this free event is one that you don’t want to miss. The day will kick off with attendees seeing the American Flag be raised around 1 p.m. The program will then allow visitors to take their chance at different activities and games and, if they want, visit the Fort Pitt Museum as well. 

While the event is free, visitors will have to pay to enter the museum. Attendees of the event will also have the chance to play the game of the day, Tomahawk Toss, in which visitors can pay $5 for five minutes of throwing. At this event, you can spend the day learning America’s history, taking in cool sights and overall having quality time with family and friends. 

  1. Visit The Point for the City of Pittsburgh Independence Day Celebration 

If you’re more of an evening person, The City of Pittsburgh Independence Day Celebration is for you. The celebration at Point State Park, or The Point, begins at 4 p.m. on July 4 with various family activities that last until 8:30 p.m. During the event, visitors can also enjoy different food vendors available during the event’s picnic from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. 

The event then continues with different musical performances by the East Winds Symphonic Band and the River City Brass. The event also includes two special performances by Squonk titled “Hand to Hand” that begin at 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. 

You can end the night with fireworks, courtesy of Zambelli, which kick off at 9:35 p.m. The event allows you to sit back on the grass of Point State Park accompanied by friends or family and watch the dazzling fireworks light up the Pittsburgh sky. 

  1. Visit the Carnegie Science Center for their July 4th: Explosive Science!

Spend the day learning about science and history on the same day at the Carnegie Science Center. Located on the North Shore, the Carnegie Science Center is offering a special event for this Fourth of July titled, July 4th: Explosive Science!, which will last from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. 

The event will allow attendees to have access to one of the best views of the Pittsburgh fireworks spectacle, and spend the day visiting various exhibits such as GUITAR: The Instrument That Rocked The World

Accompanied with the general admission ticket comes the great firework view, museum access, the ability to see the movie “America’s Musical Journey” in The Rangos Giant Cinema, live entertainment and snacks like popcorn and cotton candy to top it all off. 

You can stay nice and cool in the Carnegie Science Center all while still being able to see the spectacular firework display shown over the three rivers. Sounds like a pretty good deal to me. To buy tickets for the event or learn more, you can visit here.

  1. Spend the day in the sun 

I’m not a meteorologist, but right now the weather for this Monday is looking sunny with no chance of clouds. Instead of worrying about holiday festivities, you can spend the day soaking up the sun at Kennywood or cooling yourself off as you ride water slides all day at Sandcastle

Or if you’re lucky and have access to a pool, you could always spend your day relaxing poolside. Both the waterpark and amusement park are having special events for this upcoming holiday weekend. Beginning this Friday, Sandcastle will host their summer concert series, Jammin’ July, which will feature local artists to perform at a rather interesting concert venue at Sandcastle’s very own Mushroom Pool

Located right near the Waterfront in Homestead, the waterpark is a short drive or bus ride from campus, and is perfect for everyone, especially families. You can buy tickets for Sandcastle here. Or if waterparks aren’t really your thing, you can buy tickets for Kennywood’s Celebrate America here. The best way to celebrate any summer day is screaming your lungs out while riding the world-famous Steel Curtain Coaster

Since July 4 is a federal holiday, many will have Monday off giving everyone a much needed long relaxing weekend. No matter what way you spend your Fourth of July, I hope you make the most of it. Happy Independence Day!