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A Patriotic and Fun 4th in Central Oregon

Summer in Central Oregon offers a feast for the adventurous and respite for the relaxers. Come 4th of July, add to that plenty of patriotism.

This year it falls on a Wednesday  – possibly creating a whole FIVE-day weekend for a lot of people. It’ll be a great weekend to find a great hike, play some golf at one of the two dozen courses here or maybe get crazy with a whitewater rafting trip.

Big Eddy Thriller

You couldn’t have picked a better place to celebrate the 4th.

On the 4th, Bend features one of the quirkiest celebrations you’ll ever see – The annual 4th of July Pet Parade is exactly what it sounds like: Thousands of people and their pets parading through downtown in front of some 10,000 spectators. You’ll find all sorts of animals including cats, llamas, mini horses and a dog held airborne by balloons. (You just have to see it to believe it.) The parade starts at 1o a.m. and is immediately followed by an Old Fashioned 4th Celebration down the street in Drake Park. The party features food vendors, arts and craft booths, games for kids, music and much more.

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Fireworks across Central Oregon
Bend: Pilot Butte, 10 p.m.
Redmond: Deschutes County Fair & Expo Center, 10 p.m.
La Pine: Frontier Heritage Park, 10 p.m.
Prineville: Reservoir State Park, 10 p.m.
Madras: Sahalee Park, 10 p.m.

After an afternoon of floating the river or heading up to the high lakes to beat the heat, end the holiday by finding a good spot to watch the fireworks show from atop Pilot Butte State Park at 10 p.m. (Local tip – Bend High School and Pilot Butte Middle School (click for maps) both offer good spots to see the show.)

Redmond’s “We the People 4th of July Parade” through downtown kicks off at 10 a.m. downtown followed by an Old Fashioned 4th celebration at the fairgrounds from 11 to 4.  This free event features a day of games, bounce houses, petting zoo, pony rides, live music and more. For more information please call 541-548-7275 or visit www.redmondjuly4th.org.The fireworks show starts at 10 p.m. at the Deschutes County Fair and Expo Center.

In Sunriver, the day starts with a bike parade at 10:30 followed by an all-day celebration with lots of free entertainment. Enter the watermelon eating contest, or try your skills at “Hoops” or “Batter’s Up.” Stop by and see the cool fire and police vehicles and talk with our local Police Officers and Fire Fighters. There will be live music, a BBQ lunch and more.

La Pine’s Frontier Days actually start on July 1st with a variety of family-friendly activities, cook-outs, live music and more. On the 4th the party starts at 7 a.m. with a “Woodcutter’s Breakfast” followed by a parade at 10:30.

The theme for Madras’s 2018 4th of July is, “Let Freedom Ring!” The day starts off with the Beamer 10k Run at 7:00 am, followed with by the parade at 10 a.m. The celebration continues with an Opening Flag Ceremony, music, food vendors, face painting and more.

Prineville will host a 4th of July celebration from 10 to 4 featuring entertainment, a Splash n’ Dash race, Willy’s Washboard Jamboree and more. Fireworks happen at 10.

To see a full listing of all the events and activities slated for the July 4th holiday weekend, visit our Calendar.

Ted Taylor
Ted Taylor
Ted Taylor manages COVA's digital content, media relations, PR and social media. He's an award-winning reporter and editor who has worked in newspaper and televisions newsrooms in Nebraska, Colorado, Arkansas and Oregon. A former assistant golf professional, Ted still loves to sneak in a quick 9, but you're more likely these days to find him on the mountain bike trails when he's not spending time with his family. He's called Bend home for 17 years.