5 FUN THINGS TO DO FOR THE FOURTH OF JULY

Ready to celebrate the red, white and blue? Here’s where to wave a flag, enjoy a fireworks show and celebrate with family and friends around Cortland County!

Summer is underway here in Cortland County, and that means it’s time to start making plans for July 4th! Here we celebrate America’s birthday with dazzling firework shows, patriotic festivities, historic programs, free concerts and more.  Keep reading for the can’t-miss Independence Day events in Cortland County!

CATCH A FIREWORKS SHOW

It isn’t a 4th of July celebration without fireworks, and in Cortland County there are great places to watch the sparks fly. The Annual Cortland County Fireworks display will take place on Wednesday, July 3rd from 1:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. at Historic Dwyer Memorial Park.  This year visitors will be treated to live entertainment starting at 1:00 p.m., delicious food vendors, and a firework show that will be bigger, better and longer this year. Don’t forget to turn your radio to x101 Always Classic at dusk for the annual sky concert during the show.

There is a $5 charge per vehicle to enter the park that day.  In the event of rain, the show will be July 5th.

If you didn’t get your fireworks fix at Dwyer Memorial Park, the Town of Virgil will be holding their Independence Day fireworks celebration at Hope Lake Park on Friday, July 5th.  The park will open at 10:30 a.m. for families to enjoy boating, fishing, and swimming, and delicious food will also be available from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. courtesy of the Virgil Fire Department.  Bring blankets and lawn chairs to relax and enjoy the fabulous fireworks display at 10:00 p.m. over the park’s beautiful lake.

HAVE FUN WITH HISTORY

This year’s Independence Day agenda includes a public reading of the Declaration of Independence at the Center for the Arts Homer on Thursday, July 4th.  All are invited at 10:00 a.m. to listen to Charles Jermy Jr. and Charles W. Jermy III recount the circumstances that led up to the Declaration’s adoption in 1776 and talk briefly about its signers. Those in attendance will then be invited to read a short portion of the Declaration of Independence, following the reading, bells in the buildings surrounding the Homer Village Green will be rung 50 times.

Afterward, head over to the 1890 House Museum to step back in time during their Victorian Fourth event. From 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., take a 4th of July themed tour of the mansion, sample Victorian food, play croquet on the front lawn and hear music on the museum’s 1923 player piano. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased at the door. Children 6 and under are free.

TAKE A DIP IN A POOL

With the temperatures rising, opt to cool down at one of the two watery oases in Cortland. You don’t have to drive far to dust off your beach chairs and towels – Cortland has its very own sandy oasis only five minutes from historic downtown.  Yaman Park is open from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m., and boasts a small pond with a swimming beach. There are spacious picnic areas with pavilions and grills if you’re with a large group of family and friends, and if the water doesn’t tire out the kiddos, the playground and skatepark will. 

If you’re looking for a little less sand, than the C.C. Wickwire Pool at Suggett Park is the spot for you. The swimming pool is open from Noon to 7:00 p.m., and has a separate toddler play area, as well as a Splash Pad. Within the park, there is a playground, two basketball courts, and a softball field.  Regardless of where you choose to cool down, don’t forget the sunscreen! 

LACE UP YOUR BOOGIE SHOES

Put on your patriot best and join friends and neighbors at the Cortland Main Street Music Series, Friday, July 5th at 5:30 p.m.  Local musicians Lonnie Park and John West get things started, followed by The Fall Creek Brass Band out of Ithaca at 6:30 p.m.  The evening will be capped off with a performance by Connecticut-based band, The Alternative Routes at 7:45 p.m.

The VFW Auxiliary group will have their food tent set up, and there will be a variety of domestic beers, wine, seltzers, and local craft beers at the beverage tent.

Check out the Experience Cortland events calendar for more live music options. 

CATCH EVENING BASEBALL

There’s no better way to celebrate the United States’ birthday than enjoying America’s favorite pastime! Bring your whole family to cheer on the Cortland Crush as the team takes on the Sherrill Silversmiths at the Gutchess Lumbar Sports Complex. For those who can’t make the holiday matchup, catch one of their home games on Monday, July 1st against the Syracuse Salt Cats or Tuesday, July 2nd against the Syracuse Spartans.  Every game will have fun specials for all fans. 

All three ballgames begin at 6:00 p.m. Visit www.CortlandCrushBaseball.com for more information.

FOR A FULL LIST OF CORTLAND COUNTY HAPPENINGS, CHECK OUT THE EXPERIENCE CORTLAND EVENTS CALENDAR.