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The Fourth of July is one of America’s favorite holidays and is a very popular travel holiday. In fact, last year alone, AAA estimated that over 48.9 million Americans would be traveling to celebrate Independence Day! And one of the top destinations for travel? The Beach!

The Outer Banks is one of the best places to visit if you want to celebrate 4th of July with friends and family. Every year, there are dozens of events and firework shows that occur throughout the area and if you happen to be in town that week, you will definitely want to check them out! 

Here is an updated list of all July 4th 2020 celebrations. 

2020 July 4th Celebrations & Fireworks

Corolla Fireworks (With Changes for 2020)

Your family will love the 28th Annual Independence Day Celebration at Whalehead in Historic Corolla! On Friday, July 3rd from 7:45 PM until 9:00 PM, enjoy a grand firework display! Admission to this event is free and parking is also free of charge! Fireworks begin at Dusk.

*This year, the event will be a bit different as the town adheres to social distancing guidelines.

  • There will be a firework show only for 2020 whereas prior years have seen a full-day of vendors, rides, and other events.
  • Staff will be on hand to direct parking and parking will be limited.
  • Visitors should stay in their vehicles to adhere to distancing. There will be marked spots in the lawn if visibility from your vehicle is obstructed.
  • Masks are required.

Watch the Fireworks safely from your home here: Corolla Fireworks Live Stream.

Duck Parade & Celebration

*Due to COVID-19, this Independence Day celebration has been cancelled for 2020.

Kill Devil Hills Fireworks

For a truly impressive fireworks display, head to a beach access near Avalon Pier for the town of Kill Devil Hills official firework display! This firework show begins at dark.

*Due to COVID-19, this Independence Day celebration has been rescheduled for Labor Day 2020.

Can I watch the fireworks from a nearby beach access?

If you don’t want to head to the pier itself, try parking at the beach access at Hayman Blvd. (0.4 miles north), Helga Street (0.8 miles north), 5th Street (0.5 miles south), 2nd street (1.1 miles south), 1st street (1.2 miles south), or Asheville Street beach access (1.7 miles south). While there are other accesses in between (or even walk out from your oceanfront rental), the ones listed above have convenient parking lots. During a clear night, you can typically see the Avalon Pier fireworks from Kitty Hawk and even south of the Ocean Bay Blvd. Beach Access! Jockey’s Ridge also provides a view of this fireworks display.

Nags Head Fireworks

*Due to COVID-19, this Independence Day celebration has been cancelled for 2020. 

Manteo Fireworks & Community Event

*Due to COVID-19, this Independence Day celebration has been cancelled for 2020. 

Avon Fireworks

*Due to COVID-19, this Independence Day celebration has been cancelled for 2020. 

Ocracoke Fireworks & Celebration

*Due to COVID-19, this Independence Day celebration has been cancelled for 2020.

North Carolina Free Fishing Day

Do you love fishing but don't go often enough to purchase a license? July 4th is Free Fishing Day across all of North Carolina! Anyone in North Carolina (both visitor and resident) can fish in any public body of water for free that day -- no license required. This includes coastal waters so OBX visitors can enjoy fishing in the ocean, the sound, and off canals! This event is sponsored by the NC Wildlife Resources Commission and authorized by the NC General Assembly to fall on July 4th every year. Keep in mind that normal fishing regulations (length, possession limits, bait & tackle restrictions, etc.) will still apply. Check the NC Wildlife NC Fishing Page for more information on these regulations. 

Are Fireworks Legal on the Outer Banks?

Celebrating Independence Day should be a fun event for everyone but the laws regarding fireworks in North Carolina may not be the same as they are in your home state. Dare County and Currituck County prohibit certain consumer fireworks and certain Outer Banks towns also have bans to keep in mind.

Dare CountyThe following information is from the Dare County Fire Marshal:

North Carolina general statue GS 12-413 defines which consumer fireworks are actually allowed in North Carolina. Pyrotechnics, commonly known as 'Safe and Sane' fireworks, are the only ones allowed in North Carolina. These devices include caps, snakes and glow worms, smoke devices, trick noise makers, sparklers, and other sparkling devices such as fountains. Illegal fireworks include devices that leave the ground, such as bottle rocks and mortars, and have a report or 'bang'. Examples of these include firecrackers and M80s. These types of devices are not legally available in North Carolina.

Because of the many dangers to public safety, all fireworks are illegal in Dare County on Hatteras Island. The Town of Duck, the Town of Southern Shores, and the Town of Nags Head have also banned the use of all fireworks materials. Before lighting any legal fireworks make sure to check with the local fire department for any additional regulations.

If you do decide to use consumer fireworks, here are a few tips to keep you safe!

  • Only use legal fireworks.
  • Don't allow children to light the devices.
  • Read and follow the manufacturer’s directions.
  • Only use fireworks outside, on a level area, away from easily ignitable materials.
  • Do not point or throw fireworks at another person or animal.
  • Light only one device at a time and quickly move away to enjoy the show.
  • Do not place any part of your body overtop the device.
  • Have a bucket of water or water hose readily available where you are lighting the fireworks in case a fire starts.
  • Do not attempt to relight a device that does not ignite and properly fire. Thoroughly soak the device prior to disposing.
  • Soak all spent devices with water before disposing the materials in the trash.
  • If a fire starts or someone is injured, call 911 immediately.

Hopefully, these tips will help you stay safe and have an enjoyable time! If you have any further questions, contact your local fire department or the Dare County Fire Marshal’s Office at 252-475-5750.

Currituck County: Please see this statement from the Currituck County Chamber of Commerce: