Go big with a Gatlinburg cabin during your next 4th of July vacation.Are you going to be spending the 4th of July in Gatlinburg? There are few places in the entire country that are as patriotic and fun for families as this celebration in the Great Smoky Mountains.

The best way to join in the celebrations is to arrive a couple days early at Gatlinburg family rentals and get settled in. Once the holiday arrives, you will be ready to join all the festivities starting with the annual midnight parade.

Midnight Parade

Gatlinburg, Tennessee is the first place in the entire country to kick off its 4th of July celebrations. For over 30 years, the celebration begins at midnight when the clock ticks to the 4th of July with a festive parade. Over 100,000 spectators take to the streets to enjoy the floats, balloons, music, and more. This first event celebrating the 4th of July in Gatlinburg stretches for over one mile and is a favorite event for both locals and families who visit year after year. Be sure to claim your spot on the observation route as early as possible; the best places are taken up quickly. This promises to be one of the most colorful and exciting parades you’ve ever been to and will be worth getting home late to Gatlinburg family rentals.

Fireworks Show

When you choose to spend the 4th of July in Gatlinburg, the range of free entertainment is sure to impress. Beyond the midnight parade, another favorite spectacle is the fireworks show. This Independence Day celebration starts at 10 p.m. and lights up the sky in all directions. All of the events in Gatlinburg are family friendly and the fireworks show is no exception. Bring a blanket along to set up your spot and get ready to sit back, relax, and enjoy the show.

River Raft Regatta

There’s plenty of 4th of July entertainment to be found during the day in Gatlinburg as well. The River Raft Regatta begins each year at noon on the 4th of July and is located on the Little Pigeon River in downtown Gatlinburg. This event allows families to be creative, as the race allows any vehicle that can float to give it a try. In the past, entries have included boats made of little rubber ducks or matchsticks. Many people prefer to watch this free event instead of participating, and there are many places along the river where you can grab a seat and cheer for your favorite boat.

Tunes and Tales

The 4th of July will provide many reasons to tear yourself away from cozy Gatlinburg family rentals. One of the main attractions (that also continues throughout the summer) is the Tunes and Tales street performances. Just like all of the festivities, this family-friendly performance is free and features musicians, storytellers, and local artisans. Starting at 6 p.m. in the center of town, as many as 18 performances can be enjoyed throughout the night. Part of the fun of this entertainment series is that you can join in and listen whenever you want.

There are some destinations where 4th of July celebrations might be geared more towards adults, but in Gatlinburg these festivities are definitely a family affair. Be sure to pack along some red, white, and blue outfits and get ready to celebrate one of the most festive days of the year in this popular destination of the Great Smoky Mountains.