One of the best things about how large Portland’s tri-county area is the variety of events throughout the year. The 4th of July is no exception with parades, festivals, and fireworks EVERYWHERE all over the metro! Whether you want an all-day small-town celebration or enjoy some day fun and have the kids tucked in for bedtime, here is your ultimate Portland 4th of July event listing to ensure a successful family holiday!
Check out your neighborhood and big city parades. Some are simple and small-townie, but great for the young ones, especially if they throw candy! Others are huge and part of an entire day of celebration.
- Lake Oswego: Parade at 10 a.m., vendors and festivities including a pie-eating contest until 1 p.m. and fireworks at 9:30 p.m.!
- Canby: In addition to the parade at 10 a.m., there’s a car show, brews and BBQ, children’s activities, street fair, and fireworks at dusk.
- Happy Valley Family Festival: From a 9:30 a.m. hike and an 11 a.m. parade to rock climbing, inflatables, beer garden, and live music, this one will make everyone happy.
- King City: The Walk and Roll Festival just outside of Tigard features a parade at 10 a.m., live music, vendors, and kids activities until 2 p.m.
- Hillsboro: Put on by the Hillsboro Rotary, this HUGE yearly parade has been around for forty years and starts at 10 a.m. Check out the parade line-up on their website.
- Beaverton Freedom Fest: Pancake breakfast, 5k and kids race, and benefit concert all wrapping up at 1 p.m.
- Estacada Timber Festival: This was the small-town event I grew up attending. Gates open at 10 a.m. with vendor booths, a Kids Zone, live music, fun timber competitions (pole climbing, axe throws, sawing contests, log rolls and more), and finishing it off with fireworks at 10 p.m.
- 15th Annual Berry Fest: Smith Berry Barn in Hillsboro hosts a celebration of berries with divine desserts, a traditional 4th of July picnic, live music, family farm activities, and wine tasting. All wrapping up at 4 p.m.
- Yamhill County 4th of July Celebration:A family-friendly opportunity for local and surrounding communities to celebrate independence day! Food vendors, kids activities, corn-hole tournament, live music, discounted entry fees at Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum and Wings & Waves Waterpark, FREE movie passes at IMAX and of course an upgraded fireworks display to conclude the holiday!
- Cherry Fest NW: Formerly called the Bite and Brew of Salem, admission is FREE on the 4th! This all day event starts off with an early morning 5k and 1/2 mile kids run, then family-friendly games, carnival rides, live entertainment, and food and microbrews. Fireworks start just after dark.
- Corbett Fun Fest: East of Gresham on I-84 is the town of Corbett that hosts an old-fashioned, small town holiday celebration complete with a morning parade and fireworks after dark. Make a day of it!
- St. Paul Rodeo: Go for the parade and rodeo and stay for the fireworks. Other rodeo days run July 1-6, with fireworks each night 3-6!
- The Molalla Buckaroo: July 1-4 rodeos include fireworks at the end, and special 4th activities include a Freedom 5K race, parade, and live music, too.
- Waterfront: The massive fireworks downtown Portland at Tom McCall Waterfront Park. The show is part of the Blues Fest, but paid admittance is not necessary as it can be seen from anywhere along the west-side waterfront and eastern esplanade. Fireworks usually start late after dark, and is always jam-packed. I recommend taking public transportation since parking and traffic get messy.
- Fort Vancouver: With a suggested donation of $5, you can purchase Prime Viewing seats for $50/adult and $25/child. It may be worth it for the experience if you really want to impress the kiddos (or scare them).
- Baseball: Portland Pickles, Hillsboro Hops, and Salem-Keizer Volcanoes. Take the family out to the ball game with fireworks after!
- Oak Parks: Picnic spots outside the gates are free, but get there early to claim your space for viewing fireworks. Pay the gate fee for better parking, prime spots inside the gates, live music, and other festivities. Extended rides and rollerskating hours for the 4th, but they cost extra.
- Forest Grove
Let me know in the comments if there’s anything I missed, and have a safe and fun 4th of July!