Best Fourth of July events in the DC area

WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 19:  General view of the atmosphere at the Foundation for the National Archives 2013 Records of Achievement award ceremony and gala in honor of Steven Spielberg on November 19, 2013 in Washington, D.C.  (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for Foundation for the National Archives)
Visit the Declaration of Independence at the National Archives Kick off Independence Day with a trip to visit the Declaration of Independence in the rotunda at the National Archives in D.C. Each year, the Archives hosts an event on July 4, packed with historical reenactments and hands-on activities. Visit the event’s website for more information. (Michael Loccisano /Getty Images) (Michael Loccisano)
Atmosphere at A Capitol Fourth 2015 Independence Day concert at the U.S. Capitol, West Lawn on July 4, 2015 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for Capitol Concerts)
National Independence Day Parade The annual National Independence Day Parade will take place at 11:45 a.m. at Constitution Avenue and 7th Street. Expect live music, floats, giant balloons, celebrity participants and thousands of spectators. Visit the parade’s website for more information.  (Getty Images) (Getty Images for Capitol Concert/Paul Morigi)
Getting around D.C. may be a challenge on July 4. (PRNewsFoto/Capital Concerts)
Capitol Fourth Concert John Stamos is back for another year to host the 38th edition of PBS’ A Capitol Fourth. You can also see performances from the National Symphony Orchestra, the Beach Boys, Jimmy Buffett, Pentatonix, Andy Grammer, Renee Fleming, the U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, the Choral Arts Society of Washington and more on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol for an all-star salute and a concert like no other and after the concert, be sure to check out the fireworks from the National Mall. Visit the event’s website for more information. (PRNewsFoto/Capital Concerts) (PR NEWSWIRE)
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Smithsonian Folklife Festival This year’s Smithsonian Folklife Festival (June 27-July 1 and July 4-8) celebrates the the traditions of the Catalan region of Spain and the way Armenian culture has influenced life in the United States. You can learn how to cook traditional foods, learn artisanal crafts and even help build a human tower. Visit the event’s website for more information. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)
MOUNT VERNON, VA - FEBRUARY 22:  Dean Malissa (C) portrays President George Washington as he delivers remarks during a natrualization ceremony at George Washington's Mount Vernon February 22, 2017 in Mount Vernon, Virginia. Wednesday marks the 285th anniversary of the birth of George Washington, Revolutionary War general and the first president of the United States of America. Built on land belonging to Washington's family, the Mount Vernon Estate became the sole property of Washington in 1761 and was his country home until his death in 1799.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
An American Celebration at Mount Vernon Want to avoid downtown altogether? Head out to Virginia’s Mount Vernon and ring in the Fourth at the home of America’s first president. Watch daytime fireworks over the Potomac River, witness historical reenactments and more. Visit Mount Vernon’s website for more information. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) (Getty Images/Chip Somodevilla)
Washington Nationals' Bryce Harper bats during a baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds, Sunday, June 25, 2017, in Washington. The Reds won 6-2. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
Spend the morning watching baseball There’s nothing more American than watching America’s favorite pastime. The 4th of July game at Nats Park has become a tradition, and this year the Nats play the team from the home of the American Revolution: the Boston Red Sox! Cheer on the Nats at 11:05 a.m. Visit the Nationals’ website for more information. (AP Photo/Nick Wass) (AP/Nick Wass)
Plan on celebrating at The Plains Great Meadow, in The Plains, Virginia, hosts a July Fourth celebration, complete with pony rides, a cake walk, polo exhibitions, and of course, fireworks. Visit the event’s website for more information. (Courtesy Great Meadow Facebook) (Great Meadow Facebook)
DES PLAINES, IL - JULY 3: A participant dressed in flag attire waves while riding on his float during the Fourth of July parade July 3, 2004 in Des Plaines, Illinois. America will celebrate its 228th birthday July 4, 2004. (Photo by Tim Boyle/Getty Images)
Attend a neighborhood parade Want to avoid the crowds, but still participate in a parade? Several neighborhoods in the D.C. area hold their own parades, separate of the one downtown. Some of the more notable ones take place in Barracks Row, Fairfax City and the Palisades. (Getty Images) (Getty Images/Tim Boyle)
A rendering of one element of Fun House, the exhibition at the National Building Museum beginning July 4. (Courtesy National Building Museum)
Take a trip through the Fun House A new, interactive exhibition opens July 4 at the National Building Museum. The New York-based firm Snarkitecture designed a series of temporary structures inside the museum’s Great Hall. Start in the “front yard,” and exit through the “back yard.” (Courtesy National Building Museum) (Courtesy National Building Museum)
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WASHINGTON, DC - NOVEMBER 19:  General view of the atmosphere at the Foundation for the National Archives 2013 Records of Achievement award ceremony and gala in honor of Steven Spielberg on November 19, 2013 in Washington, D.C.  (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for Foundation for the National Archives)
Atmosphere at A Capitol Fourth 2015 Independence Day concert at the U.S. Capitol, West Lawn on July 4, 2015 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for Capitol Concerts)
Getting around D.C. may be a challenge on July 4. (PRNewsFoto/Capital Concerts)
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MOUNT VERNON, VA - FEBRUARY 22:  Dean Malissa (C) portrays President George Washington as he delivers remarks during a natrualization ceremony at George Washington's Mount Vernon February 22, 2017 in Mount Vernon, Virginia. Wednesday marks the 285th anniversary of the birth of George Washington, Revolutionary War general and the first president of the United States of America. Built on land belonging to Washington's family, the Mount Vernon Estate became the sole property of Washington in 1761 and was his country home until his death in 1799.  (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
Washington Nationals' Bryce Harper bats during a baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds, Sunday, June 25, 2017, in Washington. The Reds won 6-2. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
DES PLAINES, IL - JULY 3: A participant dressed in flag attire waves while riding on his float during the Fourth of July parade July 3, 2004 in Des Plaines, Illinois. America will celebrate its 228th birthday July 4, 2004. (Photo by Tim Boyle/Getty Images)
A rendering of one element of Fun House, the exhibition at the National Building Museum beginning July 4. (Courtesy National Building Museum)

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