No city celebrates the Fourth of July quite like Atlanta. So, wherever you are around town, there’s bound to be loads of food, fun and fireworks to enjoy.
Here’s our short list of what’s happening and how you can be a part of it:
Start the day off right at the 41st annual Atlanta Journal-Constitution Peachtree Road Race, the world’s largest 10k competition. Cheer on more than 55,000 runners as they trek down Peachtree Road from Lenox Square mall to Piedmont Park. The race begins at 6:45 a.m. with the Shepherds Center wheelchair race; the foot race commences at 7 a.m., with most runners finishing around 9:30 a.m.
Spectators should plan to take alternate routes (preferably the Marta train), as a portion of Peachtree Road and sections of other major Midtown streets (West Peachtree Street, 10th Street, Monroe Drive, etc.) will be closed. If you decide to brave traffic, these Buckhead streets all lead to Peachtree Road: West Paces Ferry Road, Pharr Road, West Wesley Road, East Wesley Road, Lindbergh Drive, Peachtree Battle Avenue and Collier Road.
If you like being in the center of it all, Centennial Olympic Park is the place to be. Rain or shine, there will be an all-day celebration, including fireworks and a diverse entertainment lineup, spanning the park grounds and the adjacent World of Coca-Cola lawn. Bring your picnic baskets, and towels as your little ones are guaranteed to make a run for the Fountain of Rings.
For the largest fireworks display in the Southeast, head to Lenox Square mall. In addition to the pyrotechnics, there will be plenty of vendors; kid-friendly fun and entertainment; musical performances; a live telecast; and special guest appearances. Previous years’ guests have been Ashton Shepherd and Miss America.
If you’re looking for a range of family-centric activity, head to the 42nd annual Fantastic Fourth Celebration at Stone Mountain Park, July 3-5. In addition to the choreographed lasershow and fireworks spectacular, regular attractions such as the paddle boat and SkyHike ropes will be open. Grilling is allowed, just be sure to arrive early for a picnic spot as the park draws large crowds on holidays. Admission into the park is free, but parking is $10 per vehicle.