Independence Day celebrations return to Bay Area

After a COVID hiatus, fireworks will once again light up the night on the Fourth of July.

"This event is going to be about bringing people back together again," said Mayor Hagen Brody.

In Sarasota, a parade will be held to honor first responders and those who've worked to protect us.

"We are going to celebrate not only Independence Day, but all the heroes, the medical professionals, the front-line workers, our veterans that kept us all safe during the pandemic and got us to this point," Mayor Brody shared.

The Sarasota Powerboat Grand Prix Festival has been rebranded to Suncoast Summer Fest. Suncoast Charities for Children has two weeks planned of celebrations. Boat races will still be held. There will also be a Celebration in the Park, a block party and more.

"What was traditionally started as a boat race has expanded into several events that the community can enjoy," said Lucy Nicandri the executive director for Suncoast Charities for Children.

READ Fourth of July fireworks sales boom amid pandemic

Lakeland's ‘Red, White and Kaboom’ will blast off at Lake Mirror on July 3.

"The community is very hungry for events, it seems like everyone is ready to get out and it’s going to be a fantastic night," said Kevin Cook, Lakeland's director of communications.

There will be music and food trucks. The only thing missing is the annual watermelon-eating contest.

"Because of COVID complications, we are not going to do that, but other than that issue it will be businesses as usual for our ‘Red, White and Kaboom,’" said Cook.

Fireworks for Bradenton and St. Petersburg are also a go, but details are still in the works. The city of Tampa is talking about a possible Fourth of July celebration, but nothing official has been planned at this point.

For cities across the area, Independence Day 2021 will be the first holiday where communities come together, since what has felt like a lifetime to many.

"I think the community is ready to come together again. The pandemic is not over, but I think we are at the point where we have a lot to be thankful for and a lot to celebrate," said Mayor Brody.


Click here for more information on ‘Red, White and Kaboom’. 

For more information on Suncoast Summer Fest visit


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