Grab your American flag shorts and your face paint because it’s time celebrate America’s birthday yet again.
From BBQing to pool partying, there are tons of ways to celebrate. But Houston’s biggest bash is Freedom Over Texas in downtown Houston. Beer, music, activities — the party is fun for the whole fam.
Here’s what you need to know before you go.
1. Where it is.
Eleanor Tinsley and Sam Houston Parks. The main stage is toward Eleanor Tinsley Park, but there are a couple other stages sprinkled in.
2. How much it costs.
$8 before; $10 day of.
3. The schedule.
Doors open at 4 p.m., and Hunter Hayes takes the stage at 6:30. DNCE then plays at 8:05, with fireworks following at 9:35. FYI, the pre-party starts before Hunter Hayes with a tribute to the nation from United States Air Force Band of the West.
4. Where to park
Parking downtown is never easy, and definitely not during the 4th. Here’s where you can find all the downtown parking garages. Also, you might get lucky and find street parking (free after six).
When all else fails, Uber.
5. What you can and cannot bring.
No coolers, food, alcohol, pets, etc. And, I mean obiously, it is not BYOF (bring your own fireworks).
Definitely bring a blanket to sit on. I also recommend sunblock, bug spray, tennis shoes, etc.
6. What to wear.
Red, white, blue — obviously. And/or a flag cape. Your call.
7. The best places to post up.
At the concert: Front and center OR find a nice spot on the hill facing the stage. You’re back a ways, but you have good height over the crowd.
For just the fireworks: Check the map to see where the gates are if you’re not into going in. I recommend finding a spot on Allen Parkway (the whole road is closed). If you have access to a downtown tower, that works well too.
8. What you can’t miss.
Play games at the Bud Light Bayou Beer Garden, charge your phone and win swag at Southwest Airlines Porch, drink Dr Pepper floats and enjoy tunes from Mango Punch!, Vaudevylle, and ThunderSOUL at the Dr Pepper Zone, and salute the troops at the”Symbols of Freedom” in Liberty Park.
New this year: Bud Light will have a mobile studio and crew where you can share your “Made in Texas” friendship story and possibly be featured in a Bud Light commercial. Grab your bud (and your bud) and let’s talk friendship.
9. There’s more than just concerts and fireworks.
There’s also an ish ton of food. Heck yes. There will be more than 30 restaurants and eateries. Here are just a few of the ones I’m pumped about:
- Steel City Pops
- Maine-Ly Sandwiches
- The Burger Joint
- Cool Runnings Jamaican Grill Food Truck
- Taco Texas
- Taco Me Crazy Food Truck brought to you by Cadillac Bar and Grill
- B’s Roasted Corn
- Kona Ice
- Muiishi Makirritos Japanese x Mexican Fusion.
10. The fireworks are a BFD.
Like, obviously. It’s a 25 minute show choreographed to music and, just to paint a picture, last year’s show was $100,000. I mean, that deserves your full attention, if you ask me.