People are getting a lot more bang for their entertainment buck this Independence Day.
With the Fourth of July falling on a weekend, local communities are taking advantage, stretching the holiday over the coming days. Fireworks will be fired off Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights around the county.
And surrounding the skyborne showcases will be music, food, parades and other traditions that have defined the holiday for cities and towns throughout Johnson County.
After the coronavirus pandemic left Fourth of July celebrations canceled in 2020, things feel more balanced again. While it can’t make up for the losses everyone suffered last year, the abundance of options at least offers a little bit of joy and togetherness in 2021.
Here’s what to do this holiday weekend:
Details: Friday through Sunday, Mallow Run Winery, 6964 W. Whiteland Road, Bargersville
What: Mallow Run has packed a full three days into its Fourth of July shindig. Come listen to live music on the winery’s lawn, enjoy local food trucks, and of course, the wine will be flowing. Tastes Like Chicken takes the stage on Friday, with Payton and Roz then the Flying Toasters. Both nights, the evening will be capped by a fireworks finale over the winery.
The winery will be open starting at noon Friday and Saturday, with live music starting at 6 p.m. The early part of the day is free to take part in, but after 5 p.m., a $10 per car charge will be required for admission.
On Sunday, no fireworks, but people are encouraged to celebrate America with music by Strawbury Jam. Admission is free.
Franklin Firecracker Festival
Details: 4 p.m.-dark Saturday, downtown Franklin and Hillview Country Club, 1800 E. King St.
What: Franklin’s traditional Fourth of July celebration comes with twice the boom this year. Not only will fireworks be shot off from the dog park adjacent to Province Park, as they traditionally have for years, but organizers have planned a simultaneous show to be fired from Hillview Country Club on the east side of town.
Prior to the dueling displays, the Firecracker Festival will fill an afternoon downtown with fun activities. Fleet-footed youngsters will have the chance to show off their skills in the Fastest Kid in Town race. Enjoy music by Gavin Curry, the Franklin Community Band and the Blue River Band, while food vendors will set up around the courthouse square. A beer garden is available for the 21-and-over crowd.
Details: 2 p.m. Sunday, Peoga. Lineup begins at 1:30 p.m. at Indian Creek High School
What: The community of Peoga, located in the southwest corner of Johnson County, may be tiny on the map. But the people who call it home think big when it comes to parties. The Peoga Parade is a fun tradition that celebrates the patriotic spirit of the community, and features local marching bands, floats from civic organizations, political leaders and others.
After the parade, enjoy a fish fry at Small Town Market, located at 2418 W. 900 S., Trafalgar.
Independence Day Social
Details: 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday, Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site, 1230 North Delaware St., Indianapolis
What: The historic home of Indiana’s lone President will host a traditional front-yard shindig for its Fourth of July party. The Independence Day Social, hosted by the Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site, offers first floor tours of the site. Guests can cool off with ice cream in the yard, play a variety of backyard games and relax to patriotic music.
Reservations are required, and can be made at bhpsite.org/events/independence-day-social.
Edinburgh Firecracker Festival
Details: 5-10:30 p.m. Sunday, Keeley Street, Edinburgh
What: Town organizers have brought back the community camaraderie of the Edinburgh Firecracker Festival, but have made some changes to create a better experience for people. The fireworks display will be fired off from the top of School Hill, which will make them more visible to more areas of the town.
But Edinburgh residents will have the chance to make a day of their celebration, with games for kids, food, live music from She Loves Horses and a car show.
Downtown Indianapolis Fireworks
Details: 10 p.m. Sunday, downtown Indianapolis
What: The fireworks display in downtown Indianapolis will fire off from a new location this year, but those to gather to see the city’s sky light up will recognize the same old bombastic show that has defined the event in the past. Organizers had to find a new launching space for the display, after a new residential development forced the show to be moved from its traditional spot on top of Regions Tower. The fireworks will now be set off from 500 N. Meridian St.
The 21-minute show will be accompanied by patriotic music, broadcast live on B105.7 and 97.1 Hank FM. Best viewing locations have been identified at Military Park, east end of IUPUI; portions of the Downtown Canal Walk, and some of the properties managed by the Indiana War Memorial Commission, such as American Legion Mall.