Johnson City Press: Fourth of July celebrations around the Tri-Cities
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Fourth of July celebrations around the Tri-Cities

Johnson City Press • Jun 30, 2019 at 9:07 PM

Ready to get your 4th on? Here's where to celebrate around the region.

Abingdon:

Downtown Abingdon is going big to celebrate the Fourth, with an “All-American Independence Day Extravaganza”. 

The free event will be held in the Abingdon Market Pavilion, and along Remsburg Drive. There will be a watermelon eating contest, a kids craft area, historical reenactors, a block party, a concert and a firework finale. Food trucks will also be present. 

Festivites begin at 4 p.m. with a watermelon eating contest for ages five to 18. Contestants should arrive by 3:30 p.m. for signup, and must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. The free concert starts at 7:00pm, featuring the blues and southern soul of Carolyn Wonderland. The Kids Craft area is open 4:30 to 7:00 p.m, where kids of all ages can participate in creative craft projects for free. Activities at the craft area include rotating art projects every hour.

Other draws for families include an antique car show, historical reenactors celebrating Abingdon’s rich Revolutionary War history, and a block party and foam pit. The entire extravaganza will end in true American style with a firework finale at 9:15 p.m.

Public parking is available in the Municipal Lot on Main Street, or on the street as available. For a full schedule of events and activities, visit https://www.abingdonmusicexperience.com/independence-day-extravaganza

Bristol:

The Historic Downtown Bristol July 4th Celebration will be full of fun events and activities, with something for the whole family to enjoy.   

Starting at 5 p.m. in Cumberland Square Park, there will be a special recognition of veterans, family fun events in the park, inflatables, eating contests and more. Fireworks begin at 10 p.m.  

Elizabethton:

While Elizabethton held its big Independence Day celebrations this past weekend, its annual Patriotic Bike ride will still be held on July 4. 

Children are invited to decorate their bikes or other non-motorized vehicles for a parade at Covered Bridge Park. Registration is free, and trophies will be awarded to winners. Parents are also invited to decorate and take a lap alongside of their kids. 

Registration opens at 11 a.m. on Thursday, and the parade will begin around 12:30 p.m.

The Elizabethton Twins will also be in action Thursday night, taking on the Kingsport Mets with a Huge fireworks display slated to end the night.  

Erwin: 

The Town of Erwin will be celebrating the Fourth of July with its annual “Welcome Home Veterans” parade, which will feature a slew of professional floats and new and vintage automobiles to carry any veterans who want to ride in the parade.

The parade, which begins at 10:30 a.m., will be preceded by a “Biscuits for the Brave” breakfast for veterans at 9:30 a.m. in the Town Hall community room. The celebration will begin at 11 a.m. at Gentry Stadium.

This year’s parade will be led by Hazel Berry, a member of one of the first classes of Navy WAVES, Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service, during World War II. Now 95, Berry volunteers every week at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Mountain Home, something she’s done in some capacity for more than 54 years.

Greeneville:

Greeneville will be hosting their seventh annual Fourth of July parade, starting at 3 p.m., with activities and fireworks going until 11 p.m. There will also be live music, food vendors and “lots of fun for the entire family.” 

Thursday at 1p.m., the Greeneville Reds will also be in action at home against the Bristol Pirates. 

Johnson City: 

Sponsored by Johnson City, Food City and Pepsi, Johnson City’s 34th annual Fourth of July celebration will feature something for everyone. 

Starting at 5 p.m. at the Freedom Hall Civic Center, attendees will be able to enjoy live music, food, craft booths and more. There will also be a year’s supply of groceries valued at $10,000 from Food City up for grabs. Other prizes included a year’s supply of gas valued at $1,500 and a year’s supply of Pepsi valued at $520. 

Organizers will also be giving away four annual tickets to Anakeesta, a theme park in Gatlinburg, and a Pigeon Forge super pack, which includes a two-night stay at Hearthside Cabins, four dinner passes to Bennett’s BBQ, four passes to Wonderworks and four passes to Ober Gatlinburg. Registration details can be found at www.wxbq.com

Johnson City Transit will also be providing a free bus service from Winged Deer Park and the corner of West State of Franklin and University Parkway on the East Tennessee State University campus. Returning rides will be begin at 10:20 p.m. following the fireworks. 

Attendees are asked to leave pets at home, and bring a clear bag. All bags will be subject to search; alcohol, fireworks and other incendiary devices are prohibited.  

Jonesborough:

Get your Fourth of July celebrations started early in Jonesborough, as they kick off the day with the Jonesborough Days Parade at 10 a.m. Afterwards, stick around for the rest of Jonesborough days festivities, which will include live music, handmade local crafts, storytelling, and “much more.” 

Fireworks will kick off later in the evening, and Jonesborough Days will run until July 6. 

Kingsport:

Kingsport will host its Fourth of July celebration on Thursday, with live music starting at 7 p.m., and fireworks scheduled to begin at 9:45 p.m. 

The event will be held on Broad Street in downtown Kingsport, with the Benny Wilson Band and Ivy Road headlining the live music portion. Also on hand will be Auntie Ruth’s Doughnuts, Beach Hut Shaved Ice, Boozy Creek Smokers, Old Fashion Country Kitchen, Shabby Allie’s Boutique and Catering and Shrimp Po’ Boys. 

Unicoi:  

Starting at 5 p.m. on the Fourth, the Town of Unicoi will be holding its annual Freedom Fest, with arts and crafts, children’s activities, music, food and fireworks. 

Downtown Country, Zach McNabb and the Tennessee Esquires and Daisi Rain will be performing. Event staff will also be handing out patriotic glow necklaces while supplies last, and the fireworks will go off at dark. 

Editor’s Note: A previous version of this article listed an event in Flag Pond as taking place this coming Saturday, June 6. The event was June 29.

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