Lights. Fireworks. Action.

Festivalgoers at Lake County’s Fourth of July celebrations are guaranteed to have a blast.

Fourth of July has arrived. It’s a time to celebrate America’s independence, barbecue with family and friends, and watch a colorful array of fireworks sparkle in the night sky.

Several towns in Lake County celebrate Fourth of July in grand style, making our hearts burst with patriotic pride. Each event is free.

Groveland

The city of Groveland holds its annual celebration July 4 at Lake David Park. The event, which lasts from 4-10pm, has attracted thousands of residents since its inception more than 20 years ago.

One of this year’s highlights is a live performance from the Groveland-based Randall Crawford Band, which will play a variety of country music and old rock. The event also features the ever-popular Firecracker Pageant and a classic car show. A dazzling fireworks display begins at 9:15pm.

“I’ve been attending this event since I was a kid, and it is definitely one of the most fun-filled and largest events in Groveland,” says Rebekah Morgan, event coordinator. “I’m trying to make it as community-oriented as possible and get the community involved so they can take ownership in it.”

Mount Dora

Can’t wait until Independence Day to get your fireworks fix? Then consider attending Mount Dora’s Freedom on the Waterfront celebration, to be held from 5-10pm July 3 at Elizabeth Evans Park, 100 N. Donnelly St.

This year’s activities include live music, a bounce house for children, games, and food and beverage vendors. Fireworks will be launched at 9:15pm near the 35-foot-tall lighthouse on Grantham Point.

“We bill the event as Lake County’s most creative fireworks display,” says Chris Carson, cultural and special events coordinator for the city of Mount Dora. “It’s a 20-minute nonstop, musically choreographed presentation.”

Nearly 20,000 spectators are expected to attend.

Tavares

The city of Tavares will have a military-themed Fourth of July celebration affectionately called Home of the Free Because of the Brave. The event includes a showcase of vintage military vehicles near town square, vendors selling military-related items, and a slide show on two jumbo screens with pictures of local military personnel, law enforcement officers, and firefighters. If you would like your loved one to be a part of this, email his or her picture to events@tavares.org.

The celebration kicks off July 4 at 5pm with a parade down Main Street and concludes at 9pm with a fireworks display over Lake Dora. Guests can also enjoy kid’s games, face painting, and live performances by the Maiden Voyage Band and Caribbean Chillers.

“This is a very family-oriented event where people are peaceful, pleasant, and happy,” says Tamera Rogers, community services director of the city of Tavares. “When the parade comes down Main Street, and you see all the people waving a small American flag, it sets the tone for the rest of the evening.”

Eustis

The city of Eustis celebrates Independence Day on July 1 this year at Ferran Park near downtown.

Festivalgoers can enjoy a live performance by the classic rock band Shakedown, as well as waterski exhibitions by the Lakeland Waterski Show Team. In addition, a special kid’s zone features a bounce house, face painting, and splash pad for children. The fireworks show begins at 9:30pm.

“This event is truly a hometown celebration,” says Erin Bailey, who serves as the city’s event coordinator. “We will have local vendors, local food, and local entertainment. There’s no better place to have a Fourth of July celebration than Ferran Park because we have the most beautiful sunset.”

Leesburg

Touting its show as the “largest fireworks display in Lake County,” Leesburg will host its Independence Day celebration July 4 at Venetian Gardens, south of Dixie Avenue. Since few things are more American than grabbing a hot dog and heading to the ballpark, you can begin your celebration by watching the Leesburg Lightning play the Winter Park Diamond Dawgs at 6pm at Pat Thomas Stadium.

Then head to Venetians Gardens, where free hot dogs and snow cones, food vendors, and a kid’s zone await. The fireworks show begins at 9:15pm.

“We provide a wholesome, family-oriented event that the entire community can enjoy,” says Joe Shipes, executive director of the Leesburg Partnership. “Coming to our event is a wonderful way to celebrate family, community, and country.”

Clermont

Clermont’s Red, White, and Boom celebration is July 4 at Waterfront Park, 330 3rd St. Highlights include a patriotic pet parade, a pie-eating contest, a patriotic costume contest, a kid’s zone, and a live Journey tribute band.

More than 50 vendors will be at the event. The festival concludes at 9:15pm with a fireworks show.

“This is a wonderful way to spend a holiday with family and friends in a safe, enjoyable environment,” says Scott Davidoff, director of parks and recreation. “Who wouldn’t want to celebrate this magnificent day by spending time in the City of Champions?”

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