All patriotic hands on deck! While much of the world is still working on getting back to "normal," one thing remains the same: Fireworks are still the best way to celebrate the Fourth of July.

From the return of downtown's big display to sparks outside city limits, here are the best (free!) places to party in the U.S.A., then kick back and enjoy the show.

 

37th Annual Pops on the River, Little Rock

Firework shows don't get much better than on the Arkansas River every July 4, and this iconic display at the First Security Amphitheater is officially back after calling things off in 2020. Over the years, Pops on the River has become a must-attend for those looking to celebrate the holiday with a side of food trucks, family activities, vendors and entertainment. The fireworks show is accompanied by music from the Arkansas Symphony Orchestra. The fun begins at 3 p.m. with fireworks starting at 9:30 p.m. Click here for more info.

FYI: Parking can be a little tricky with big events, so check out this map of lots and garages around downtown Little Rock to get a game plan before you set out. And remember, street parking is free on weekends.

 

Dickey-Stephens Park Watch Party, North Little Rock

While the Travs are away, well, the fun goes on without them. The ballpark is opening its gates (and its great seating) for guests who want to watch the Pops on the north side of the river. And yes, the concession stands will be open for business. Gates open at 7 p.m. Click here for more info.

 

4th Fest Parade & Fireworks, Maumelle

Who doesn't love a parade, especially with stars, stripes and spangles? This year's festivities kick off with the parade along Millwood Circle and Club Manor Drive with walkers, cars and trailers decorated to the nines. Next is the fesival with vendors, food, entertainment and games at Lake Willastein, ending with the fireworks show. The parade starts at 4:30 p.m. and the fireworks start at 9:30 p.m. Click here for more info.

 

Big Bang on the Range, Jacksonville

Set at the Jacksonville Shooting Complex, these annual festivities and fireworks are back, complete with a full lineup of live music, inflatable games, a rock climbing wall and lots of eats and drinks. Gates open at 5 p.m. and fireworks start at 9 p.m. Click here for more info.

 

Pops in the Park, Bryant

Pull up at Bishop Park to get in the fun this year. Get your fill of lawn games, music and food trucks before the big show. Bring your blankets and spread out in the outfields of complex A, B, C or D for great views. The fun starts at 6 p.m. and fireworks begin at 9 p.m. Click here for more info.

 

Independence Day Bash (July 2), Benton

Benton is getting the party started early this year. Guests are invited to Riverside Park for an evening of food trucks, live music, water activities for the kids and, of course, fireworks. The fest starts at 6:30 p.m. Click here for more info.

 

Independence Day Family Celebration (July 3), Sherwood

In this case, fireworks in a forest mix just fine. The annual festival is bringing back the kids zone, food trucks, music and petting zoo to Sherwood Forest starting at 6 p.m. Afterward, set up your blankets, relax and enjoy the fireworks show at dusk. Click here for more info.