Forget joining the insane crowds at the Needle or Gasworks Park, stumbling over drunks, and a 2-hour snarl of traffic once it’s over. Stay here and plan your holiday weekend!
Start your day by joing other summer beach naturalists at Carkeek Park to learn about the beach, what lives and grows there, and what washes up. Enjoy nature and learn a little about your local beach. Make sure to wear good sunscreen for the glint off the waters! (I personally love wading in my Crocs; the waves go right through the holes.)
Enjoy a free concert at the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks after lunch. The Seattle Civic Band entertains you on the 4th from 2-3pm with patriotic and marching music. Come early to grab a seat or bring your own lawn/folding chair.
At 6pm, you can while away the hours until right before sundown at the Ballard Jam House, 1707 NW Market Street. Playing on the 4th will be the Welch/Stickney Ensemble (Modern original jazz). The best thing about this set is that it’s also a relief fundraiser for a cyclone in Myanmar/Burma! No cover charge, but donations are highly encouraged and all proceeds go to the International Burmese Monks organization for those affected.
Head home just before sunset and watch fireworks from the best seat in the house – your own TV with your friends. Share nibbles and drink responsibly as you get the best view of both the 4th of Jul-Ivar’s over Elliot Bay and Washington Mutual’s sponsored display that’s shot off a barge on Lake Union. While personal fireworks are banned in our town, don’t fret! Your night isn’t finished!
Once the shows are over, keep the party going by heading out to the 9:30 show at the Tractor Tavern, 5213 Ballard Avenue. Enjoy the “high-octane power pop” of three bands in one night! The reunion tour of The Model Rockets, as well as The Tripwires and Doll Test. Make sure to grab your very reasonably priced $8 tickets at Sonic Boom Records before then. You’re definitely going to end the holiday on a high note, as the Tractor is open til 2am.
Looking for something else to do, and worried about how other people may have spent the 4th in Ballard? Here’s your chance to give back and make it a better place. July 6th at 7:30am (at least it’s Sunday!), the SurfriderFoundation is wanting volunteers to help clean up the holiday mess at Golden Gardens Beach. It’ll only take you a couple of hours, and they’ll provide light refreshements as well as the bags and gloves. Make sure to let Melanie at firstname.lastname@example.org know you’re planning on attending, or visit Surfrider.org.
Enjoy your 4th of July weekend. Stay safe and have a great time in Ballard!