Thanks to the abundance of lakes in the Austin area, the major fireworks displays are usually over water, making them even more dramatic. So pack up the family and a picnic blanket and head to one of these fun events around town.
HEB Austin Symphony July 4th Concert & Fireworks
The "official" and largest 4th of July event in Austin will be held at Auditorium Shores (now officially known as Vic Mathias Shores).
More than 100,000 Austinites will gather to see the Austin Symphony perform patriotic music. The orchestra will begin playing at 8:30 p.m. The fireworks display over Lady Bird Lake occurs between 9:30 and 10 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Alcohol and glass containers are not permitted, but concessions will be sold. The easiest place to park is at the Austin City Hall (301 West 2nd Street). The cost is $15, and the garage entrance is on Guadalupe (a one-way street heading south).
Pflugerville Pfirecracker Pfestival 2016
For north Austin residents, the most convenient option may be the Pflugerville Pfirecracker Pfestival (18216 Weiss Lane). The event takes place from 6 to 10 p.m. on the south shore of Lake Pflugerville. The fireworks will begin at 9:10 p.m. The musical entertainment includes the Camp Mabry Brass Band, The Lost Counts and The Nightowls. No onsite parking available.
Park at Hendrickson High School (19201 Colorado Sand Drive) and take the shuttle bus to the lake.
Hill Country Galleria Independence Day Celebration
If you live in Bee Cave, this is the must-see fireworks display in the area. Held at the Hill Country Galleria amphitheater (12600 Hill Country Boulevard), the event starts at 6:30 and fireworks begin at about 9:15 p.m. You can bring a blanket and spread out on the amphitheater's lush lawn.
Live music provided by Vallejo and KP & the Boom Boom.
Cedar Park 4th of July Celebration
Held at Milburn Park (1901 Sun Chase Boulevard), the Cedar Park event runs from 4 to 10:30 p.m. The fireworks start at 9:15 p.m. Carnival rides, games and face painting will be available for the kiddos. Live music provided by the Texas Players Band.
San Marcos Summerfest
Located at San Marcos Plaza Park (206 North CM Allen Parkway), the event starts at 6 p.m. and ends at 10 p.m. The fireworks begin at 9:30 p.m. Musical entertainment includes the Adam Johnson Band and Wyzer. If you've got an adorable little Uncle Sam or Betsy Ross in the family, a children's parade and patriotic costume contest will be held at 7 p.m. Free parking is available at the San Marcos Public Library (625 East Hopkins Street).