For a small coastal community, there are many 4th of July events occurring in Santa Cruz this year. There are Independence Day parades up and down the county, from Boulder Creek in the Santa Cruz Mountains, to Watsonville in the south. Also, don’t forget about the event, billed as “The Shortest 4th of July Parade in the World” in Aptos. The mid-county community comes out in force each year to take part or to cheer on the parade along Soquel Drive. In Santa Cruz, the 30th annual Firecracker Race starts off at Harvey West Park and takes in the picturesque neighborhoods of the area. In Santa Cruz, anything is possible. Check out our list of top events for the county. Image provided by: Shutterstock.

  • Roaring Camp 4th of July Bash


    Bop on over to Roaring Camp Railroad in the picturesque Santa Cruz mountains for a 1950s-style Independence Day celebration. The family-friendly event features fun for people of all ages, including, hula-hoop contests, sock hop, games, and to nosh, an all-American barbecue.

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  • Old-Fashioned Independence Day

    Wilder Ranch SP

    Step back in time and celebrate our nation's birthday like they would have done in the early 1900s. Festivities include a family parade at noon, games, children’s crafts, live big-band music, living history demonstrations, historic speeches and flag-raising. Food and drink are available for sale, or you can bring a picnic lunch.

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  • World's Shortest 4th of July Parade


    The 4th of July parade in Aptos may be short at just two city blocks long, but it is packed with revelers and the entire community comes out in support of their friends and neighbors in the parade. Parade starts at 10 a.m. and is followed by a party with food, vendors, music, and activities from noon to 4 p.m. in Aptos Village Park.

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  • Boulder Creek 4th of July Parade

    Boulder Creek

    The annual Boulder Creek parade attracts more than 10,000 attendees every year. If you're a mountain dweller, you won't want to miss this.

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  • 4th of July Fireworks

    Scotts Valley

    The only 4th of July fireworks display in the county takes place in Scotts Valley. The day starts with a parade along Scotts Valley Drive at 3 p.m. Festivities continue at Skypark Park with game booths and classic Fourth of July grub including, hot dogs, hamburgers, ice cream and pie. There is also live music followed by fireworks. Fireworks events gate opens at 4 p.m. with the fireworks beginning at 9:15 pm.

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  • Spirit of Watsonville 4th of July Parade


    The city's hometown parade along Main Street features, car clubs, tractors, fire engines, antique cars, local non-profit agencies, equestrian units and the Watsonville Band. Parade starts at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church at Main St. and Freedom Blvd at 2 p.m.

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  • Santa Cruz Firecracker Race

    Santa Cruz

    Considering you will be outside already, cheer on your more active neighbors as they speed through the 30th annual Santa Cruz Firecracker Race. Course starts at Harvey West Park, winds its way up the trail into the majestic hills of Pogonip Park and descends back down through Santa Cruz's beautiful upper west side neighborhoods. Sponsored by Santa Cruz Sunrise Rotary Club, this year’s race benefits Red Cross of Central Coast.

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