Though some cities -- including Austin -- and counties canceled festivities and expanded the prohibition of fireworks, other cities decided that their July 4 shows will go on. All events are free and open to the public.
The city did not issue a permit for fireworks over Lady Bird Lake, so the Austin Symphony Orchestra decided to cancel its annual July 4 musical program.
The city still plans to have its "Red, White and Buda" event at Buda City Park (121 Main St.). The celebration of patriotism includes a children's parade (at 10 a.m.), kids' activities (from 10 a.m. to noon) and a concert (6 p.m.), with a lineup that includes Keith Kelso, Kevin Smith and headliner The Trishas. The fireworks start at 9:30 p.m.
The city's Fourth of July celebration from 4 p.m. to 10:40 p.m. at Milburn Park (1901 Sun Chase Blvd.) will include live music, food, air castles, face painting, carnival games, bingo, hamster balls, laser tag and sack races. After dark, you can take in the fireworks display.
There's plenty going on in Elgin on July 4. During the day, check out the People's Patriotic Fourth of July Parade; the 2011 theme is "Push, Pedal Pull and Pets." Everyone's invited to walk from City Hall down Main Street to Veterans' Memorial Park, where there will be activities, food and a Soap Box Derby exhibition by local Cub Scouts. Then from 6:30 p.m. to 10 p.m., visitors can enjoy the Family Friendly Party and Fireworks display at Southside Market & Barbeque (1212 U.S. 290 E). Besides fireworks, the event includes live music, displays honoring Texan members of the military, face painting, magicians and food.
Though Williamson County's disaster declaration banned all fireworks in that jurisdiction, an exemption allowing the city's fire department to approve a permit for the July 4 fireworks display means that the event presented by the Georgetown SERTOMA club will go forward as planned at San Gabriel Park.
Expecting larger crowds for 2011, the city moved its Independence Day Celebration Fireworks Show from Gregg-Clarke Park to the Plum Creek Golf Course Driving Range (southwest corner of Kyle Parkway and Kohler's Crossing). Visitors should be able to see the fireworks from various parking lots in the area. The show will start about 9:30 p.m.
The city's annual Liberty Fest (3400 Crystal Falls Parkway) will include food, live music, lights and a laser show, but city officials decided to cancel the fireworks because of the fire risk.
Drought conditions prompted the city to cancel the 2011 Pfirecracker Pfestival at Lake Pflugerville, though the lake will still be open for public use.
From 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., the city will hold its annual July 4th Frontier Days Celebration at Old Settlers Park (3300 E. Palm Valley). During the day, events include a parade, jalapeño-eating contest, children's activities, skydivers and fireworks. At 8:30 p.m., listen to music by the Austin Symphonic Band while waiting for night to fall; that's when the fireworks are set to begin. After the fireworks, stay for movies in the park at 9:30 p.m.: "Iron Man 2" will be playing at the Lakeview Pavilion and "Despicable Me" will play at Rabb Pavilion.
The city's hosting its Summerfest celebration from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. at San Marcos Plaza (202 N. CM Allen Parkway) on Independence Day. The event will include food, a parade, children's activities, a patriotic program, live music and, yes, fireworks, which begin at 9:30 p.m.