"Hollywood ain’t America," goes a country tune popular with family back east. It’s true! It ain’t, and that’s because Los Angeles has got more people, more cars and more stuff to do this 4th of July weekend than the vast majority of American cities. This is the four-day holiday weekend you’ve been waiting for, LA. Enjoy it!
4th of July Fireworks Spectacular with Daryl Hall and John Oates: Kick off your weekend of patriotism by checking out the legendary fireworks display at the Hollywood Bowl. American pop legends (yes they are!) Daryl Hall and John Oates will be on hand to rock you into the holiday weekend.
Nightly from Saturday, July 2 through Monday, July 4, 7:30pm, $17.50-$173.00
2301 North Highland Avenue, (323-850-2000 or hollywoodbowl.com)
"Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid": Celebrate American cinema the dreamy way by watching Paul Newman and Robert Redford in their silver screen heartthrob heydays at Cinespia’s cemetery screening of this western classic.
July 2, 7:30pm, $10 entry, advance ticket purchase recommended
Hollywood Forever Cemetery, 6000 Santa Monica Boulevard, at North Gower Street, (cinespia.org)
The Queen Mary’s Red, White and Blues: A grand 4th of July fete will go down on a ship named after the woman who once ruled the country that we won our independence from. Yeah, irony! The party on Long Beach’s Queen Mary will feature slow smoked BBQ, two stages of live music, roving entertainers, a special area for kids and fireworks at 9pm. At the nearby Aquarium of the Pacific, stop by for a BBQ buffet from 5pm to 10pm.
July 4, 11am – 11pm, $24.95 Adult, $12.95 children 5-11, $21.95 military/seniors. Parking is $15 and discounted hotel prices are available.
The Queen Mary, 1126 Queens Highway, Long Beach, (877-342-0738 or queenmary.com)
4th of July Americafest at the Rose Bowl: Grab a seat at The Rose Bowl and settle in for pre-firework entertainment from Phantom Regiment Drum & Bugle Corps, Mariachi Divas and the Ives Brothers FMX Motorcycle Thrill Show. Fireworks begin at dusk.
July 4, gates open at 6pm, $13 general admission, free for kids under 7 and active military members with a current ID. Parking is $20, and it’s all cash only.
The Rose Bowl, 1001 Rose Bowl Drive, Pasadena, (626-449-4100 or rosebowlstadium.com)
Dodgers 4th of July Fireworks: The two US cities most feared by Middle American will face off in an epic bi-coastal battle of patriotic bragging rights when the LA Dodgers take on the New York Mets. A fireworks display will follow the game.
July 4, 6:10pm, $14.50 - $664.00
Dodgers Stadium, 1000 Elysian Park Avenue, (323-224-1500 or losangeles.dodgers.mlb.com)
Soccer with Fireworks - LA Galaxy vs. Seattle Sounders: If you fancy soccer more than baseball, cheer on the LA Galaxy at the Home Depot Center and stay for fireworks -- win or lose.
July 4th, 2011, 7:30pm, tickets start at $20m parking is $15
Home Depot Center, 18400 Avalon Blvd., Carson (877-342-5499 or lagalaxy.com)
Fireworks at the LA Memorial Coliseum: This hour long fireworks show will go off near the LA Coliseum and will surely inspire as much patriotic pride as the 1984 Olympic Games that were played there did. Fireworks can be viewed from various vantage points around the Coliseum. Event organizers recommend the south lawn of the Natural History Museum.
July 4 at dusk, free
900 Exposition Boulevard, at South Vermont Avenue, (213-763-3466 or nhm.org)
Mr. and Mrs. Muscle Beach: This his-and-hers body-building contest on Venice’s famed “Muscle Beach” is the quintessential SoCal-style celebration of what it means to be a Californian American -- that is tanned, toned and ready to show it all off. For only $80, you too can enter the contest and show off your own personal American glory.
July 4, registration begins at 7:30 am, judging starts at 10am, free for spectators
Venice Recreation Center, 1800 Ocean Front Walk, at 18th Avenue, (MuscleBeachVenice.com)
Palisades Americanism Parade: There's nothing more American than a parade. This year's Grand Marshall, Jeffrey Tambor ("Arrested Development") will bring the funny, musical acts, including local reggae legend Rocky Dawuni will bring the music. A fireworks display over the sea follows. Parade is free, concert is $2 per person.
Parade, 2pm, entertainment 6:30pm, fireworks 9pm
Parade: Sunset Boulevard between via de la Paz and Drummond Street. Concert and fireworks at Palisades Charter High School, 15777 Bowdoin Street (www.palisadesparade.org)
Annual Vision Outside 4th of July Jazz and Blues Festival in Leimert Park: Live jazz and blues music, plenty of arts and crafts for the kids (flag face painting abounds!) and free watermelon for all -- summer is here!
July 4, 1pm – 7pm, free
Vision Theatre back lot, 3341 W. 43rd Pl. (213-202-5500 or culturela.org)
Malibu Fireworks: As far as big to-dos in Malibu go, 4th of July ranks right up there with Oscar week. Residents of the star-studded neighborhood celebrate with huge private industry type parties that culminate with firework displays set off from barges off the coast of some of the ‘Bu’s most famous beach front residences. (Think Geffen and Katzenberg). If you haven’t gotten your invite, you can still get in on the party. A Malibu City Hall official recommends posting up on the PCH to take in these “private” fireworks “that really benefit us all.”
July 4, at dusk
The Malibu Coast. Chi-chi Carbon Beach is likely to be especially lit up.