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We want to take you behind the scenes, to give you insider information you won't find anywhere else. This is where we pull Bloomington's hip happenings together with recommendations from our team, first-hand accounts from project producers, and guest blogs by local gurus.  The Backstage Blog helps you stay in front of it all.

Friday, June 24, 2016

4th of July Celebrations for 2016

Categories: Outdoors, Family Fun

Written by Betsy Sweeny, intern, and Teal Strabbing, Sales & Services Coordinator.  

Looking for fun things to do and see in Bloomington for the 4th of July? Bloomington's patriotic festivities kick off on the 1st and continue through the 9th.  We've got racing, live music, ice cream, lakes, a parade, and plenty of fireworks.  Hope you have a safe and happy 4th of July, maybe we'll see you around town at one of these fun events!

  • On July 1st drive on over to the south side of town for the Bloomington Speedway's Annual Fireworks Spectacular.  The Speedway is one of those things every townie and local needs to do at least once...as well as visitors!  They'll have 410 Non-Wing Sprints, Racesaver Sprints, Super Stocks, and Modifieds. So bring your cooler and a blanket to sit out in the grass and enjoy an exciting night of racing and fireworks!
  • The Bloomington Symphony Orchestra will be performing a free concert at Bryan Park on July 3rd at 6:30pm. Break out the picnic basket filled with all your favorite summer treats, and enjoy patriotic favorites and music from the movies! We suggest making a day of it at the Bryan Park Pool to cool off during the day, and don't forget that sunscreen.
  • Maybe nature and state parks are more your style?  Then Monroe Lake and the Paynetown State Recreation Area is the place for you!  Indiana is not only celebrating its Bicentennial this year, it's also celebrating 100 years of Indiana State Parks and 58 years of Monroe Lake. Celebrate with a Birthday Beach Bash from 2-4pm on July 3rd.  They'll have games, activities, and ice cream.  Grab that swimsuit and inflatable swan floatie for the beach, or rent a boat from Lake Monroe Boat Rental located in Paynetown. 
    Monroe Lake
  • Head to the southern tip of the lake for more hiking, boating, and swimming at the Fairfax State Recreation Area as well as the Fourwinds Lakeside Inn & Marina.  They'll be hosting their 4th of July Fireworks on July 3rd, the show starts at 10pm. This is a great chance to be lakeside and see the fireworks over Monroe Lake. Book your room, boat, and campsites now as they all sell out quickly.
  • If lakeside fireworks aren't for you, consider heading to Sherwood Oaks Christian Church or Southside Christian Church for their celebrations. Both will feature food and games, music, and of course fireworks at dusk. Both are free as well, with Sherwood Oaks starting at 5:30pm, and Southside starting at 7pm. 
  • Start the 4th off right with the Fourth of July Parade downtown.  The parade will be honoring our state's Bicentennial as this year's theme, it'll start at 10am on 7th Street and will end on Kirkwood Ave.  Come early, bring some chairs, and camp out on Kirkwood or find a shady place on 7th!    Parade-watching is hard work so make sure to cool-off and grab a drink or some lunch at one of over 100 local restaurants and shops in the downtown area.    
  • 4th of July parade 
  • The Ellettsville Annual Fireworks Show will begin at dusk on the 4th at the Edgewood High School Football Field. Ellettsville is only a 20-minute drive from downtown Bloomington, so get here a little early and play a round of mini golf at Putter's Park.  Pop next door to Jiffy Treet for a scoop (or two) of their homemade ice cream on a waffle cone.
  • The 4th of July activities end with a bang on July 9th for Fireworks at the Fairgrounds. Gates open at 5pm and the show starts at 10pm. This show is free, but donations are greatly appreciated.  There will be a car show, bands, food vendors, and we'll end the evening with a spectacular fireworks display.  So grab those blankets and bring your friends and family for a great evening at the Monroe County Fairgrounds. 


Julie Warren

Julie Warren

Julie was raised in Bloomington and attended IU, and all of that experience and knowledge comes in handy as the Director of Tourism. She loves live music, ice cream, swimming, craft beer, and of course her adorable family.