What To Do in Punta Gorda on July 4th

fireworksLooking for stuff to do in Punta Gorda on the 4th? You are in luck. There is plenty of celebrating going on all over town. The trick is keeping up with all the fun. Here is the skinny on what is going on in Punta Gorda this Independence Day.

Laishley Park


Five years ago, when Smugglers events took over managing the fireworks, they turned it into all day event at Laishley Park. Water-mania was born. At 10:00 a.m., Laishley Park transforms into a fair ground with water slides, food, games, and bounce houses.

Entrance fee is $3. Food and activities require tickets. For $10, kids get a wristband that lets them slide and bounce all day.

Live Music

From 6:00 pm-9:00 pm, The Boogiemen Rock-n-Soul Revue take the stage.

The fireworks begin at 9:00 p.m. Directly afterwards, Jack Michael and Drive 31 will play. According to Jerry Cleffi, event manager over at Smuggler’s events, they added post-fireworks music last year to alleviate traffic. It was a huge success. Instead of sitting in your car waiting to leave the parking lot, hang out awhile and enjoy the show.

Fisherman’s village

22nd Annual Charlotte Harbor Freedom Swim

While nobody considers the Peace River the local swimming hole the other 364 days a year, all of that changes on July 4th. At noon, hundreds of swimmers will take off from the north end of the U.S 41 southbound bridge and make their way to Fisherman’s Village. Although many don’t really swim as much as they float, raft, or paddle. The Freedom Swim is not a race. It is more like a leisurely stroll in the water.

Participants are encouraged to swim with a buddy. The event starts at noon, but anyone looking to participate should arrive a half an hour early.

Family fun

While the grown-ups are traversing the Peace River, kids can get their face painted by Metamasque Face Painting from 11 a.m.-5:00 p.m. Jeff the Juggler will perform from 11:00 a.m. -3:30 p.m.

If you’re hungry after the swim, you are in luck. The Fisherman Village restaurants are offering specials all day.

Live music

From 11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m., acoustic band, Beans and Seeds, will perform classic rock mixed with some modern day hits.

At 5:00 p.m., Mercy takes the stage and will play until the fireworks begin at 9:00 p.m.

The Fireworks

World champion firework company, Garden State Fireworks, will start the show at 9:00 p.m. We hate to give too much away, but Cleffi tells us that just last week they added a significant feature to the finale that adds the necessary “wow factor.”

You can check out the fireworks anywhere along the water or from the water if you or a friend owns a boat. For those who want a primo seat, the Military Heritage Museum is throwing a party on the roof of the Herald Court Parking garage. The event features live music from Golden Hippo, hors‘d oeuvres, and a cash bar. Cost is $20 per person.

What do we recommend?

We recommend doing it all. Take full advantage of being in Punta Gorda on Independence Day. Start your day off at the swim, either swimming or cheering. Then, move over to water-mania. You can probably even make it home for a few hours, so the kids can get a nap. If everyone in your group is past napping age, check out some live music or stop and have a cocktail. Whatever you do in Punta Gorda this 4th of July you are guaranteed a good time.



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