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Here's where to celebrate the Fourth of July in the DMV

From concerts to river cruises, this year's celebration will feel more normal than the last as more and more residents are fully vaccinated against COVID.

WASHINGTON — Now that President Joe Biden and Mayor Muriel Bowser have given the green light to the region's signature July Fourth fireworks display and city parades, DMV residents can rest assured that this year's Independence Day festivities will feel more or less like pre-COVID times. 

But there's more to do in the area beyond a 17-minute firework show at the National Mall, with activities including a 5K run, several different concerts or immersive educational programs to learn more about the Revolutionary War era. 

Here's a snapshot of some of the different events you can choose to attend to commemorate the Fourth of July:

Washington, D.C.

A Capitol Fourth

If you aren't yet comfortable in large crowds and would prefer to virtually celebrate, this yearly event, broadcast on PBS, boasts an impressive lineup with some of the nation's most acclaimed singers and bands, including Vanessa Williams, Gladys Knight, Jimmy Buffett, Train, Pentatonix, Jennifer Nettles and Auli'i Cravalho.

The concert is dedicated to active military members, and the night will also include performances by the Joint Armed Forces Chorus and the U.S. Army Herald Trumpeters

The pre-taped show starts at 8 p.m. and is the lead-up to the Mall's firework display. 

Correction: A previous version of this article stated the concert would be held in person. 

Washington Nationals Game

The city's baseball team has historically played every year on Independence Day, and this year will be no different with the Nationals set to take on the Los Angeles Dodgers, in a matchup between the 2019 and 2020 World Series winners. 

The game starts at 11:05 a.m., and you can enjoy some festive bites and drinks after the game at the numerous restaurants and bars situated around the waterfront. You can view ticket availability by visiting Major League Baseball's website

If you're looking for a game and a show, consider heading to the park on July 3 at 7:15, and catch the "freedom fireworks" after the game. 

Potomac Cruises

Take in the views of D.C.'s historical skyline and cherish the summer breeze on one of several river cruises scheduled for July 4.

Whether you and your friends are interested in reserving a table for a cruise with an open bar, or you'd prefer to jam out to 1990s and 2000s R&B hits or you simply want an affordable fireworks watch party, the day's Potomac boat rides cater towards most type of crowds. 

Capitol Hill Community Parade

If you're looking for a more traditional Fourth of July, head over to Capitol Hill for a neighborhood parade.

The event will start at Barracks Row by Eastern Market Metro station at 10 a.m. Groups who want to join in the fun instead of watching from the sidelines can register here


MVF 5K Race

Kick-off your Independence Day with a morning workout by joining the Montgomery Village Foundation's 5K run starting at 7 a.m. 

If you are a competitive runner, the Montgomery Road Runners Club will also be providing professional chip timing so you can track your speed and cadence. 

Participants must register prior to the event using this portal. The first 180 people to register will also receive a free race day t-shirt. 

National Harbor Jazz Festival

Celebrate the region's deep music culture by attending the ongoing Lake Arbor Jazz Outdoor Concert Series, which will feature Jeff Bradshaw as the headliner for July 4 -- a soul-jazz and hip-hop/funk innovator who has performed alongside legendary bands and artists like Earth Wind and Fire and Patti LaBelle, according to Bradshaw's website

Tickets for the performance start at $75, but due to COVID restrictions, attendees must purchase in increments of two tickets. There is a 250 guest maximum limit, so make sure to register early using this link


Mount Vernon Celebration

While most festivities will start in the evening, George Washington's Mount Vernon will host several events to commemorate the Revolutionary War efforts and celebrate the legacy of the first U.S. president.  

Starting at 9:30 a.m., families can "meet" George Washington and talk to him about his political life, listen and dance to performances of 18th-century music, enjoy a hot-air balloon ride and witness reenactments of Revolutionary War Patriots training exercises. The site will also host a citizenship naturalization ceremony at 11 a.m. 

To access Mount Vernon, all guests will need to purchase a normal grounds pass, which remain limited due to pandemic restrictions. However, fully vaccinated visitors will no longer be required to wear masks while at the premises. 

Credit: George Washington's Mount Vernon
Fireworks ignite over Mount Vernon.

Leesburg Parade

If you happen to live deeper in Northern Virginia, you can still enjoy the region's rich patriotism by watching or participating in Loudoun County's July Fourth parade. 

The celebration will kick off in the historic center of downtown Leesburg before proceeding down King Street and ending at Fairfax Street. The Loudoun Now newspaper will also be sponsoring their annual Patriot Cup Competition: the best dressed and enthusiastic parade participants will have their name engraved into a trophy to be displayed at Leesburg's Town Hall. 

If you are interested in joining the parade, you can fill out an entry application using this form

RELATED: Leaders snuff Independence Day celebrations in Montgomery County

RELATED: DC will have a 4th of July celebration on the National Mall again this year

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