Fort Mill Times

Tradition on tap for Fort Mill, Tega Cay July 4 fests

Some towns shoot fireworks on Independence Day.

Fort Mill fires a canon.

The annual July 4 canon firing at Confederate Park is one of several local traditions marking the holiday, from festivals to parades and even mortar blasts.

Fort Mill has a patriotic program at 10 a.m. Thursday, at First Baptist Church with guest speaker and state Rep. Raye Felder. Shortly after, around 10:45 to 11 a.m., guests will work their way to Confederate Park for the canon firing.

In Tega Cay, Independence Day isn’t only a national holiday, but a city milestone. Founded on the Fourth, the city celebrates its 31st birthday this year.

“Tega Cay is known for many of its unique charms, but the one premier event that the entire city goes all out for is our July 4th celebration,” said Charlie Funderburk, city manager. “We have folks coming into the city from miles around to participate in or watch our parade that kicks off a day full of wonderful events.”

A day-long party, Tega Cay has many events, including parades both by land and by lake. It’s a time to show off the city to guests, but also to remind residents why they wanted to call Tega Cay home in the first place.

“It really takes you back to a simpler time of life,” Funderburk said. “If you don't know your neighbors yet, you will by the time the day is done.”

A bang-up holiday

Here’s a roundup of area July 4 events: July 3The Coca Cola-4th of July Festival takes place July 3 and 4 at the U.S. National Whitewater Center. Activities include rafting, zip-lining, cornhole tournaments and fireworks both nights. Live music begins at 4 p.m. both days.; usnwc.orgThe 11th annual Red, White & Boom! festival on E. Black Street in Rock Hill begins at 5:30 p.m. Event includes free music, activities for children and an ice cream eating contest. Fireworks begin at 10 p.m. onlyinoldtown.comThe Charlotte Knights host the WBT SkyShow after completion of their 7:15 p.m. game against the Durham Bulls. It’s the largest fireworks show of the season for the team. The Knights also have one of their many Saturday night firework shows July 6 after their game with the Norfolk Tides.July 49 a.m.Red, White & Blue Golf Tournament at Tega Cay Golf ClubLand Parade along Tega Cay Drive10 a.m.Fort Mill patriotic celebration at First Baptist Church with speaker Raye Felder, followed by the traditional canon firing at Confederate Park around 10:45 a.m.Historic Rock Hill offers costumed guided tours of the historic White Home, with games and activities for adults and children. Croquet and three-legged races are among the activities. Events run 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.; historicrockhill.comHistoric Brattonsville toasts independence circa 1854. Activities from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and include dancing and music, historic games, tours of Hightower Hall, militia muster with musket firing demonstrations and the reading of the Declaration of Independence.; chmuseums.org11 a.m.Boat Parade in Tega Cay begins at Nivens Creek, ending at Windjammer Park about 12:30 p.m. Best viewing is at the park. Free trolley service is available after the Land Parade to shuttle guests to Windjammer. Pick-up is at the Glennon Center or Turner FieldCanoe Joust at Windjammer Park; registration is $10 per two-person team. Sign up at the event1 p.m.Carolina Show Ski Team performance at Windjammer Park3 p.m.Splish-n-Splash at the Glennon Center parking lot in Tega Cay; water events will be open for children from 3 to 5 p.m.4:30 p.m.Tega Cay Lions Club Fish Fry, 4:30-7:30 p.m. at the Glennon Center6 p.m.The July 4th Spectacular at Memorial Stadium in Charlotte includes live music, a race and other events along with fireworks at 9:30 p.m.; charlottecentercity.org8:15 p.m.A birthday party and ceremony for Tega Cay, founded on July 4 and now celebrating 31 years, lasts about an hour at the Glennon Center9:30 p.m.Fireworks on the lawn at the Glennon Center in Tega Cay9:45 p.m.Fireworks atop Lake Wylie shoot off from Camp Thunderbird. Popular viewing spots include T-Bones on the Lake and Lake Wylie Plaza10 p.m.Nights of Fire begins and runs at 10 p.m. every night through Aug. 11 at Carowinds. The park also offers free admission July 3-4 for active, inactive and retired military with a valid identification.;