Can you feel that, Philly?
Summertime is almost here — and it just wouldn’t be summer in Philadelphia without huge Fourth of July celebrations and the return of the Wawa Welcome America! festival, which celebrates our nation’s Independence Day annually.
The blowout celebration returns this summer for a full week, from June 27 through July 4, 2016, eight days of festivities — all family-friendly — that will attract more than 500,000 residents and visitors.
Wawa Welcome America Fast Facts
- The citywide July 4th celebration hits June 27-July 4, 2016
- Festival highlights include four free concerts, three fireworks shows and free museum admission
- Wawa Welcome America July 4th Fireworks will go off at 10 p.m. over the Philadelphia Museum of Art
Over the course of the week, a wealth of patriotic activities will take over the city — think three fireworks shows, four free concerts, free museum admission, a festive parade and huge Historic Philadelphia Block Party.
Three Huge Fireworks Shows and Four Free Concerts
This year, celebrations around Independence Day in Philadelphia include not one, but three pyrotechnic displays.
On Friday, July 1, watch a free Philadelphia Orchestra concert along the Delaware River waterfront at the Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing. After the show, turn to the skies for the first of three fireworks displays.
On Saturday, July 2, return to the Delaware River waterfront for another patriotic performance from The US Army Band “Pershing’s Own” followed by fireworks display number two.
Come Sunday night, the skies won’t light up with fireworks, but Independence Mall will fill with music and crowds for the annual POPS! on Independence concert.
Of course, Monday, July 4th brings the final free concert and fireworks display. In 2016, the annual Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert goes with a family-friendly lineup including Kidz Bop Kids Live in the afternoon and an evening show with Broadway’s Hamilton star Leslie Odom, Jr., Yazz the Greatest from TV’s Empire, a Gamble and Huff tribute and The Philly POPS.
Plus, additional artists are expected to be announced in the coming weeks, so stay tuned.
Following the concert, the Wawa Welcome America July 4th Fireworks will hit the skies at 10 p.m. — an hour earlier than in recent years.
Other Festival Highlights
Beyond the blowout shows, Independence Day festivities in Philadelphia include citywide family-friendly happenings.
Free Movies and Museum Admission
Each day of the festival, free museum admission will be available to one or more Philadelphia museums including The Barnes Foundation, the National Constitution Center, the African American Museum in Philadelphia, the Ben Franklin Museum, the National Museum of American Jewish and the Rodin Museum.
Plus, seven locations around town like Franklin Square, the Piazza at Schmidt’s and the Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing will host free Philly @ the Movies screenings throughout the festival.
Historic Philadelphia Block Party
At the new Historic Philadelphia Block Party, the streets around Independence Hall will be filled with live entertainment, food vendors, kids’ games and more on Sunday, July 3 just before the POPS! on Independence concert.
Independence Day Parade
On the Fourth of July, the day-long festivities begin right where the Founding Fathers worked to establish this country: Independence Hall. The Independence Day Parade steps off at 5th and Chestnut streets for its annual stars-and-stripes filled promenade through Historic Philadelphia.
Check back for more information about upcoming Wawa Welcome America events and how to celebrate the Fourth of July in Philadelphia.