I plan on spending my 4th of July like I do every year. My family celebrates the traditional Festival of Tubular Meats, during which we eat many, many sausages in the boiling hot sun. My dad thinks its hilarious to throw Black Cats under my chair, but that is a dangerous and foolish thing to do, DAD.

However, July 4th decided to be incredibly awkward and fall on a Monday this year. That's wonderful news for bank employees, but leaves the rest of us trying to figure out how to pack the most fun into the weekend.

Here are a few great events going on this coming July 4th weekend and on Monday, July 4th.

Friday, July 1st

First Friday Art Trail. While not a July 4th activity per se, it's still a great opportunity to run into friends and see some great art. I'm sure there will be a flag in there somewhere. If not, I give you permission to sing "America the Beautiful" in the LHUCA Courtyard. (I should mention I have no authority to grant you such permission.) It's also your chance for me to take your picture! This monthly event is always free.

Saturday, July 2nd

Amigo's La Raza on the Plaza, featuring La Mafia, the legendary and Grammy Award-winning Latin band. This family-friendly event features food and adult beverage vendors, a kid's play area and more. This event requires tickets.

Sunday, July 3rd

Buffalo Spring's Lake Fireworks Extravaganza. Be sure to head out to the lake very early (like, hours early) for a great spot and to avoid the lines.This is a huge show in a beautiful setting. The music for the fireworks will be simulcasted on Awesome 98. Remember to bring the admission fee to enter the lake.

4th on Broadway Street Dance. The Turnpike Troubadours and Dirty River Boys bring Red Dirt and Texas Country to the Hub City for a night of dancing and (since there's a mechanical bull available) sheer shenanigans. This event requires tickets.

Monday, July 4th

4th on Broadway Parade is the largest free festival in Texas and certainly a must-attend if you're able. A charming parade is followed by an entire day of food, music, art and tons of fun stuff for kids. Be sure to tell the Lubbock-Con folks that Renee says "Hi!" This event is free, but bring money since you'll want to hit the vendors.

Mackenzie Park Fireworks Display is a free event, but get there early for a great spot. It's a huge yearly display and always a lovely evening at the park.

Regardless of what you decide to do, please be safe. Don't drink and drive, and be careful with your fireworks. Certainly don't throw them under anyone's chair, because that's awful, DAD.


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