5 Tennessee Fourth of July Road Trips

Taking a short road trip to explore a new place may be just what you and your family need this Fourth of July. Here are some great, nearby destinations where you can celebrate Independence Day and enjoy a mini-vacation.

1. Gatlinburg


Gatlinburg celebrates the 4th of July in a big way and this year will be no exception.

For 44 years, Gatlinburg has kicked off the holiday with the 4th of July Midnight Parade stepping off at 12:01 a.m. on July 4. Stretching more than a mile, the parade route begins at Baskins Creek Bypass on East Parkway, turning south onto Parkway at traffic light #3 and traveling the length of downtown to traffic light #10 at Ski Mountain Road. Parade goers are encouraged to arrive early on Wednesday, July 3 in order to secure the perfect viewing area along the parade route.

Current head coach of the Lady Volunteers, Kellie Jolly Harper, will serve as grand marshal of Gatlinburg’s 44th Annual 4th of July Midnight Parade. Only the third Lady Vol head coach in the NCAA era of women’s basketball.

The Gatlinburg Fourth of July Midnight Parade has garnered national attention and award recognition for excellence in entertainment. The parade has been named by National Geographic Traveler Magazine as a “Top Ten Parade to see in the US” and recognized by Livability.com as one of the “Five Best Fourth of July Celebrations in Smaller Cities.”

Additionally, the event has earned multiple Grand Pinnacle Awards by the International Festivals and Events Association and was named a Top 20 Event for 2016 by Southeast Tourism Society.

2. Knoxville

Knoxville’s Festival on the 4th delivers a wide variety of family fun including entertainment, activities and treats at the City of Knoxville’s 4th of July celebration at the World’s Fair Park.

The free festival begins at 4 p.m. and ends at approximately 10 p.m. at the conclusion of the fireworks display. This event is RAIN OR SHINE.

Throughout the day festival goers will be treated to good music, good food, good fun and good times on the Festival and Performance lawns of the World’s Fair Park.

From 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., The Festival Lawn will be filled with fun activities to please kids of all ages such as miniature golf with Holes to Go and Lego building with Bricks for Kids.

Returning to Festival on the 4th this year is the Home Federal Bank Family Fun Stage. The Home Federal Family Fun Stage will feature live entertainment with new and exciting interactive fun for the whole family taking place inside the Amphitheater from 4 p.m.- 7:45 p.m.

The musical finale will be performed, starting at 8 p.m., by the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra. They will present the 35th Annual FREE Pilot Flying J Independence Day Concert on the World’s Fair Park’s Performance Lawn. This is a FREE concert – no ticket required!

Fireworks start at 9:35 p.m.

FREE PARKING: World’s Fair & Blackstock Parking Lots, 11th Street, Locust Street, Walnut Street, State Street & Market Square Garages – ADA Parking at Fort Kid Parking Lot




For more information, call the Knoxville Office of Special Events at 865-215-4248.

3. Chattanooga

Enjoy a free outdoor concert on the Tennessee River and a dazzling fireworks display in Chattanooga on July 3rd at Coolidge Park! This patriotic event starts at 5 pm with a special tribute to veterans, followed by a live performance by the Chattanooga Symphony & Opera at 8 pm. The evening is capped with a stunning fireworks display! Lawn chairs and blankets are recommended.

Stay the night and check out the local attractions from battleground sites to the awesome scenery at Rock City and Ruby Falls the next day.

4. Elizabethton

You don’t have to be in a large city to enjoy the festivities of the day. Nearly every town has events going and the town of Elizabethton, TN hosts a day of activities including performances, pageants, free games, inflatables, live music and more. It takes place 10am-2pm on July 4th in Covered Bridge Park.

5. Clarksville


Celebrate our nation’s independence with great food, live music, and family-friendly activities in Clarksville.

Clarksville is hosting their events on July 3 6:30pm – 10:00pm in Liberty Park. Seating is available throughout the park and the concerts will take place on the Great Lawn of the Wilma Rudolph Event Center.

Parking is available inside the park for vehicles with handicap license plates and placards only. Liberty Park opens at 5:00 PM. Marina users must have approved vehicle tags or a temporary pass.

Boats with trailers will be allowed to access the boat ramp parking area until 4 PM or until the parking area has been filled. No boats will be allowed to exit the parking area from 8 PM until the park is empty. Additionally, Zinc Plant Road and the Zinc Plant Bridge will be closed to traffic from 9:15 PM to 10 PM for the fireworks show. Guests should expect long delays on Riverside Drive and Highway 48-13 before and after the event.

Liberty Park will close at sunset on July 2, 2019 to prepare for the Independence Day Celebration and will reopen for general use at sunrise on July 4, 2019.

This article was brought to you by Infiniti of Cool Springs, driving your next summer road trip. Infiniti of Cool Springs is located at 211 Comtide Ct., Franklin, TN 37067.


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