Independence Day is a time of exciting patriotic celebrations. The days leading up to, the day of, and the days after the Fourth of July are filled with fun things to do in and around the city of Rockford! There are activities for everyone to enjoy and this blog will outline many of them.

Before the 4th

Don’t wait for the big day to celebrate the Fourth- there are activities to kick off the holiday all weekend long. Check out these community events and plan ahead to make the most of this year’s Independence Day.


Winnebago Firework Show

Date: July 3
Time: 8:00 p.m.

If you want to experience a great fireworks show prior to the fourth of July, head to Winnebago and enjoy the spectacle! It is a great way to spend time celebrating the holiday with family and friends!

Rockford Symphony

Rockford Symphony Orchestra Star-Spangled Spectacular

Date: July 3
Location: Starlight Theater, 3301 N Mulford Rd, Rockford, IL 61114
Time: 8:00 -10:00 p.m.

Fireworks aren’t the only way to hear the Fourth of July approaching- join the Rockford Symphony Orchestra for their annual recital of the Star-Spangled Banner and other patriotic favorites at 8 p.m. at Starlight Theater. The show is conducted by Kevin Stites, a nationally renowned Broadway and Pops conductor. There will be songs from John Williams, Aaron Copland, and Stephen Sondheim.

Festivities on the 4th

Once the big day is here, the Rockford Area does not slow down on celebrations! Find out below everything to do once Independence Day arrives.

4th of july classic
Photo courtesy of Lifescape

Lifescape 4th of July Classic Run/Walk

Date: July 4
Location: Madison Street
Time: 7:30 a.m.

Celebrate the holiday by getting some exercise! Participants have a choice of an 8k, a 2- mile, or the 1-mile Family Fun Walk. All participants will receive t-shirts, food, and medals. Prizes will be given to the overall fastest finishers in the male and female categories of the 8k and 2-mile races.

Winnebago 4th of July Parade

Date: July 4
Location: Winnebago, IL
Time: 10:00 a.m.

If you love parades and don’t want to wait until the evening to see one, Winnebago offers a way to do that! You can enjoy an exciting parade filled with lots of different things to see! It’s a great way to kick off the day.

Fourth of July Day Party

Date: July 4
Location: Dusty Boots Saloon- 3907 Broadway Rockford, IL
Time: 11:00 a.m.- 3:00 p.m.

Attend Dusty Boots Saloon’s celebration in your best patriotic attire! The holiday will be celebrated with food, music, drinks, including specialty items! The event is free to attend. Show off your patriotic pride while enjoying good food, good company, and good vibes!

embassy suites

Fourth of July Experience: Embassy Suites

Date: July 4th
Location: Embassy Suites Hotel
Time: 4:00 p.m

Experience the Fourth of July spectacle from the rooftop of the Embassy Suites Hotel. The Top Rooftop Bar & Lounge offers perfect views of the fireworks show in Rockford. Each ticket purchased allows guests to receive dining credit to be used during the event. 

miles & kelly
Photo courtesy of The Standard

Celebrate the Fourth at The Standard

Date: July 4
Location: The Standard, 214 E. State St. Rockford, IL
Time: Doors open at 5:00 p.m., show starting at 6 :00 p.m. Price: $10/guest

Join The Standard for an evening with live music by Miles and Kelly and stay for a perfect place to view the fireworks show. There will also be a cash bar for 21+ adults but all ages are welcome.

Stroll on State Fireworks

Davis Park Independence Day Celebration

Date: July 4
Location: Davis Park, 320 S Wyman St, Rockford, IL, United States.
Time: 6:30 p.m.-9:00 p.m.
Price: $5 admission for adults. Veterans (with ID) and children under 5 are free.

Davis Park will be hosting live entertainment, food and beer trucks, and a children’s area with balloons, stilt walkers, yard games and more all afternoon. The park is also a perfect

spot to sit back, relax and watch the Rockford fireworks show over the Rock River. They will be playing the synced soundtrack over speakers to complete the experience. Plan to bring your own blankets or lawn chairs to enjoy the festivities.

4:30 p.m. - Andy Yaun - The Rockabilly Kid performs, Davis Park
5:30 p.m. - Characters 2 Life: Free Kids Area featuring kid's games, glitter tattoos, balloon twister artists and a stilt walker.
6:30 p.m. - Dirty Pop (live entertainment) performs, Davis Park
9:15 p.m.- 10:00 p.m. - Fireworks

After the 4th

The fun doesn’t stop after the fourth has passed! Festivities in the area continue into the weekend creating plenty of opportunity to keep the celebrations going!

cars & coffee

Cars and Coffee: Red, White, and Blue Decorating Contest

Date: July 6
Location: Katies Cup, 502 7th St, Rockford, IL 61104
Time: 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

Come to cars and coffee decked out in red, white, and blue! Costumes are encouraged as well as decorating your car. There will be appearances from Hammy the Hog, the marines, the county sheriff, and the color guard. There will also be a cookout so you can enjoy some delicious food!

blackhawk raceway
Photo courtesy of The Blackhawk Farms Raceway

SCCA Firecracker Bonneau Divisional Races-Milw/BVR- Blackhawk Farms Raceway

Date: July 6-7
Location: Blackhawk Farms Raceway, 15538 Prairie Rd, South Beloit, IL
Time: 8:00 a.m. (July 6) 5:00 p.m. (July 7)

Organized by Milwaukee Region SCCA, Blackhawk Farms Raceway hosts the Bonneau Divisional Races. The event is a Runoffs qualifying event for 2024. The patriotic themed race is a great way to close out your Independence Day Celebrations!