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Ada Wood

5 Atlanta events you won’t want to miss: July 31 – August 6

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CATS

CATS Musical
When: August 6–11
Where: Fox Theatre
Cost: $35–$155
Details: The trailer for the upcoming CATS film has permeated Twitter in the past week, but there’s a quicker way to enjoy this Broadway musical. Pulling talent from artists who have worked on Hamilton, Les Misérables, and more, this show’s (wacky and unexplainable) plot follows a tribe of cats who face some drama as the tribe’s leader has to choose one cat to ascend to heaven.

Atlanta Balloon Glow
When: August 1–4
Where: Piedmont Park
Cost: Free, $30–$50 for tethered rides
Details: Enjoy a show at dusk every evening when hot air balloons come alive with a glow. Relish in more than just the food trucks and retail vendors—hop into a balloon with your family or your significant other and enjoy a spectacular view of Midtown with tethered rides.

Soapbox Derby Festival

Soapbox Derby
When: August 3, 11 a.m.–4 p.m.
Where: Historic Fourth Ward Park
Cost: Free, $27 to register
Details: Now in its seventh year, Soapbox Derby is all about family bonding as kids and dads work together to build a car and race it down Rankin Street. Started by Cool Dads Rock, a foundation that encourages building better relationships between children and their dads, don’t miss out on food trucks while you’re there.

Salty Bees

The Salty Bees: A Raunchy Feminist Comedy Extravaganza
When: August 2, 11 p.m.
Where: Village Theatre
Cost: $10
Details: Local comedy duo Sara Bresee and Courtney Overcash are putting on a sketch comedy show full of satire and personal experiences showcasing their “unapologetically progressive points of view.” This communications specialist and technology manager pair plan to have you laughing at the challenges of womanhood in the 21st century.

Like Glue Music Festival

Like Glue Music Festival
When: August 3, 3–11 p.m.
Where: 787 Windsor
Cost: $40
Details: Experience Caribbean, African, Latin, and American cultural music all in one night. This outdoor venue will feature artists Konshens, Olatunji Yearwood, Verse Simmonds, and Mix Master David among others. Get a taste (literally) of international cultures with food, live paintings, art exhibits, and more.

5 Atlanta events you won’t want to miss: July 17-23

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Peachfest

Peachfest
When: July 21, 4–7 p.m.
Where: Peachtree Center
Cost: $70, free for kids younger than 12
Details: Feast on peach-inspired dishes from pizzas to pastries to pork and pair with a peach-infused craft brew or wine. Alongside local farmers, chefs and mixologists from well-known restaurants such as Tiny Lou’s, Miller Union, and Wrecking Bar will participate in the event, which benefits Piggy Bank, a nonprofit that protects endangered breeds of heritage pigs.

RuPaul's Drag Race

RuPaul’s Drag Race: Season 11 Tour
When: July 20, 8 p.m.
Where: Center Stage
Cost: $40–$130
Details: Your favorite season 11 queens from the Emmy award-winning RuPaul’s Drag Race—including Silky Nutmeg Ganache, Plastique Tiara, and Yvie Oddly—are coming to Atlanta to flaunt their glamorous looks.

BB&T Atlanta Open

BB&T Atlanta Open
When: July 20–28
Where: Atlantic Station
Cost: $10–$80+ for single session
Details: Catch Venus Williams, John Isner, and the Bryan brothers competing on the court. This is the 16th year of the series and Atlanta will be the first event stop, leading up to the U.S. Open.

Jennifer Lopez It’s My Party Tour
When: July 22, 8 p.m.
Where: State Farm Arena
Cost: $50–$250+
Details: Get “On the Floor” and “Let’s Get Loud” for this concert, as J Lo is bringing her hottest songs from the past two decades to Atlanta.

Head over Heels: ‘80s Musical
When: July 17–August 25
Where: Actor’s Express Theatre
Cost: $20–$45
Details: This musical comedy from Broadway highlights the hits from the all-women ‘80s band the Go-Go’s, including “We Got the Beat” and “Our Lips are Sealed.” The play follows the royal family of Arcadia as they fight to save their kingdom from extinction.

15 fun things to do for the Fourth of July in metro Atlanta

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Centennial Olympic Park Fireworks
Centennial Olympic Park fireworks

Photograph courtesy of Centennial Olympic Park

Georgia traditions

Centennial Olympic Park Fireworks
When: July 4, gates at 7 p.m., fireworks at 9:45 p.m.
Where: Centennial Olympic Park
Cost: Free, $5 for parking
Details: Self-proclaimed as the biggest fireworks show in the Southeast, this event is a local favorite. A variety of food truck options will be available including ANGELFIRE7 BBQ, Atlanta Seafood Company, and Jerkbrothersatl. Make sure you come prepared (and save some money) by purchasing parking in advance online.

Stone Mountain Fantastic Fourth Celebration
When: July 1-7
Where: Stone Mountain Park
Cost: Free, $20 for parking
Details: One of the most popular Fourth of July events, the Fantastic Fourth Celebration includes the Lasershow Spectacular and a huge fireworks display. Since this show runs all week long, you can attend even if you have other plans for July 4 itself.

Red, White and Brew at the Georgia Aquarium
When: July 4, 7-10 p.m.
Where: Georgia Aquarium
Cost: $65
Details: Unlimited beer samples, a barbecue menu, and live music all accompanied by views of beluga whales, manta rays, and whale sharks. At the end of the event, guests can go up to the top floor of the aquarium parking garage for a view of the Centennial Olympic Park fireworks show. 21 and older only.

Neighborhood fireworks and festivals

Fireworks in the Fourth Ward
When: July 4, 5-11 p.m., fireworks at sunset
Where: Historic Fourth Ward Park
Cost: Free
Details: This family-friendly event will have live entertainment and food trucks, all accessible via the BeltLine Eastside Trail. Come prepared with blankets and chairs to sit back on the lawn and enjoy the show.

Marietta Square’s Fourth in the Park
When: July 4, 10 a.m.-9:30 p.m., fireworks at 8 p.m.
Where: Marietta Square
Cost: Free
Details: This all-day event starts the party with the Let Freedom Ring Parade, which will feature 2,000 participants from civic organizations, beauty queens, scouts, local businesses, and an estimated 30,000 spectators. The rest of the day will offer plenty of festivities, including live concerts, food, carnival games, and arts and crafts. The finale of the night will be the fireworks show.

East Point’s Salute to the Red, White, and Blue
When: July 4, 3-11 p.m., fireworks at 9:30 p.m.
Where: East Point City Hall
Cost: Free
Details: Boasting “South Fulton County’s largest pryo digital fireworks”—meaning they’re synced to a musical score—make sure you show up early to tour the vendor market, watch musical performances, and dine on smoked meats, fried fish, Italian ice, and funnel cakes.

Restaurant specials

3rd of July Cookout and Fireworks at the SweetWater Brewery
When: July 3, 4:20-10 p.m.
Where: SweetWater Brewery
Cost: Free
Details: If you want to kickstart your Fourth fun on Wednesday, this event has live bands on the patio, grilled food from a Big Green Egg, and a charity cornhole tournament benefiting the Chattahoochee Riverkeeper—all before the night ends with a fireworks show over the brewery. For $75 VIP tickets, enjoy a buffet, four beer tokens and rooftop access for the fireworks show.

Plant Based BBQ at Grass Vegan Eatery
When: July 4, 1-4 p.m.
Where: The Wing Bar in Decatur
Cost: Entrees $8-$10
Details: Vegans may have trouble finding a good meal among the grilled, smoked, and barbecue meat on July 4—but not this year. Before heading off to a fireworks show, enjoy a vegan and gluten-free menu where no entree is more then $10. Try the pulled Carolina jackfruit sandwich with a fried green tomato or the burnt ends sandwich with a Coca Cola BBQ glaze and a burnt sugar peach cobbler for dessert. No tickets required.

Bar Mercado’s Fourth of July Menu
When: July 4, noon-3 p.m.
Where: Krog Street Market
Cost: $17.76
Details: The Spanish tapas restaurant is featuring a special prix fixe menu at $17.76 so you’ll be ready walk out onto the BeltLine and find a fireworks show in the city. Order three tapas from three choice sets and enjoy a churros and chocolate dish for dessert. Reservations are recommended and tickets can be purchased online in advance.

AJC Peachtree Road Race

Sports and outdoors

Peachtree Road Race
When: July 4, 6:25 a.m.-noon
Where: Peachtree Road near Lenox Square Mall
Cost: Free to spectate
Details: The world’s largest 10k is turning 50 this year. With an expected 60,000 participants and 150,000 spectators, the event will start with wheelchair races at 6:25 a.m. and continue through noon—in time to enjoy the rest of the city’s fireworks and festivities.

Braves v. Phillies at Suntrust Park
When: July 4, 7:20 p.m.
Where: Suntrust Park Stadium
Cost: $45-$175
Details: Celebrate the Fourth the traditional way with the American favorites of baseball, hot dogs, and fireworks as the Braves face off against Philadelphia. Stick around after the game for a fireworks display.

Rooftop Bash at Ponce City Market
When: July 4, 5-11 p.m.
Where: Ponce City Market
Cost: $30 for adults, $15 for kids 4-12
Details: Pull out your favorite red, white, and blue outfit and enjoy an evening of live music and barbecue from Skyline Park, Nine Mile Station, RFD Social, and Rooftop Terrace. Stick around until sunset when the Fireworks in the Fourth Ward will be right in view, alongside a panorama of the Atlanta skyline.

Stranger Things
Deviate from the traditional Fourth of July festivities to celebrate another major event: the release of Stranger Things season three. All eight episodes of this Georgia-filmed favorite will hit Netflix on July 4.

Stranger Things 3 Viewing Party
When: July 4, 5-8 p.m.
Where: Mother Bar + Kitchen
Cost: Free
Details: Come in cosplay for special discounts and enjoy Stranger Things-themed bingo before watching the first two episodes of the new season with other fans.

Stranger Things Trivia
When: July 3, 7-9 p.m.
Where: Guac y Margys
Cost: $20
Details: If you have plans the night of the Fourth but still want to gear up in anticipation of the release of Stranger Things, come join your fellow fans at Guac y Margys for themed trivia. This 21 and older-only event will include tacos and themed drinks for your team of one to six people.

Roast of Stranger Things
When: July 3, 8-10 p.m.
Where: Highland Inn Ballroom Lounge
Cost: $15
Details: For comedy buffs and Stranger Things fans, this 18 and older event is the perfect combination. Atlanta-based comics will portray—and roast—fan-favorite characters (sorry Barb).

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