If you're looking for a way to celebrate our nation's birthday today, you have plenty of choices.
The gathering points, in varying degrees of scale, are Augusta's Riverwalk, Patriots Park in Columbia County, Grovetown, Waynesboro and Lake Thurmond.
On Saturday, Fort Gordon will celebrate with a concert featuring former Three Dog Night singer Chuck Negron, followed by fireworks.
Augusta will celebrate the Fourth of July with a day of music, crafts sales and children's activities on the Riverwalk. Tonight, the U.S. Army Signal Corps Band will perform patriotic music, including a version of The 1812 Overture with live cannon fire. That will lead up to even more explosions, with a big fireworks show.
Also at the Riverwalk, St. Paul's Episcopal Church will present its first Independence Day concert at 8 tonight. The church has a special connection with patriotic music in that its first organist, James Hewitt, has been credited with writing Yankee Doodle. The concert is $15 (with reserved parking and seating for fireworks, sold in advance) and $10, and $5 for children under 12. Call 724-2485.
The festivities at Patriots Park in Columbia County get going with an opening ceremony conducted by the Augusta Chapter of the Military Order of the World Wars at 4 p.m.
Schedule of events, maps /3
Fourth of July CelebrationsWhether your idea of the Fourth is joining the family in a sack race, shoveling down the barbecue or watching the rockets' red glare, here's a roundup of the places you can go today, and what you can do when you get there:
Eighth Street Plaza
3 p.m. to dark: Arts and crafts bazaar
1 to 9:30 p.m.: Children's amusements
Reynolds and Eighth streets
3:30-4 p.m.: Taped music
4-4:45 p.m.: John Zwermer in authentic costume featuring "Stories of America."
5-5:30 p.m.: Mirage Middle Eastern Dancers & guest
5:40-6:40 p.m.: Duane Weaver
6:45-7:15 p.m.: TBA
7:30-8 p.m.: Taekwondo Plus
8:15-9 p.m.: Footloose and Fancy Free Cloggers
9-9:30 p.m.: Mirage Middle Eastern Dancers & guest
3-4 p.m.: All That Jazz
4:30-5:30 p.m.: John Monroe and The Ghostriders
6-8 p.m.: Shine Box
8:30-9:30 p.m.: Flo Carter Band
Ninth Street at the Riverwalk
7:45 p.m.: Introduction of dignitaries
8-9:30 p.m.: U.S. Army Signal Corps Band, including performance of 1812 Overture with live cannon fire.
9:30 p.m. (approximately): Fireworks spectacular. (Rain date of Saturday for fireworks only).
Sixth at Reynolds streets
8 p.m.: Concert of patriotic music with organist Keith Shafer and the choir of St. Paul's Episcopal Church.
4 p.m.: Opening ceremonies at Veterans Monument
4:30 p.m.: Live musical entertainment begins
4:30-5:15 p.m.: Bryant Pharr
5:30-6:15 p.m.: Manz
6:30-7:15 p.m.: Jessica Westbrook
7:30-8:15 p.m.: Duane Weaver
8:45 p.m.: The Daltons
10 p.m.: Fireworks
LITTLE RIVER MARINA
1-5 p.m.: Family fun day
7-9 p.m.: Gospel bands
9:30 p.m. (approximate): Fireworks
Noon to midafternoon: The barbecue starts flowing at noon and usually runs out by midafternoon. The entertainment there includes Polynesian dancers, bluegrass music and a watermelon-eating contest.
Waynesboro-Burke County Recreation Department ball field: Fireworks for about 30 minutes once the sun goes down.