Don’t miss these virtual Independence Day events

Don't miss these virtual Independence Day events
The Washington, D.C. fireworks show, "A Capitol Fourth,” is set for Saturday at 8 p.m. on PBS. (Photo courtesy of Capitol Fourth)

By Kathy Chouteau

Richmond’s fireworks along the waterfront are canceled this year. One bit of good news in this respect has been the reopening Thursday of Riggers Loft Wine Company at 1325 Canal Blvd., which will celebrate the holiday with waterfront views, wine and a newly launched tasting menu.

But for those staying home during the holiday weekend, there are plenty of ways to virtually celebrate America’s birthday.


Locals can mark the holiday while catching an iconic Richmond resident on TV when “No Time to Waste—The Urgent Message of Betty Reid Soskin airs on NBC Bay Area (KNTV) on Saturday, July 4 at 7 p.m. PT. The 50-minute documentary on the 98-year-old Rosie the Riveter/WWII Home Front National Historical Park ranger takes a look her mission to restore critical missing chapters of America’s story. Following the documentary, NBC Bay Area’s Cheryl Hurd will conduct a live interview with Soskin.

Should you find yourself missing the Oakland Symphony’s annual Independence Day performance at the Craneway, you can check out these virtual performances anytime: “Lean on Me” by Bill Withers, performed by the Oakland Symphony, Oakland Symphony Chorus, Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra and students from their MUSE education programs. Edited by Omid Zoufonoun; and “Symphony No. 9 (New World Symphony)”, Movement 4, by Antonín Dvořák, performed by the Oakland Symphony Youth Orchestra and conducted and edited by Omid Zoufonoun.

Around the Bay Area

Aside from hyper-local happenings in Richmond, there are a number of virtual Independence Day festivities, parades, runs and such taking place around the Bay Area. Here’s a rundown of how to celebrate Independence Day vicariously with other cities from the comfort of home:

Across the bridge in San Rafael, they’ve canceled the Marin County Fair’s usual July 4 fireworks, however, the city will instead broadcast a virtual show highlighting celebrations from the past. Check out the fair’s Facebook  and Instagram pages at 9 p.m. on July 4 to enjoy fireworks fun from afar.

Over in Danville, they’ll also be taking their Independence Day virtual when the Kiwanis Club of San Ramon Valley’s “2020 Kiwanis 4th of July Parade” will be livestreamed Saturday, July 4 at 10 a.m. here. Check in via the same link for a pre-parade slideshow of past event photos from 8-10 a.m.

If running is more your style, consider participating in the “2020 Moraga 4th of July Virtual Fun Run” Saturday, July 4 through Saturday, July 18, 2020 sponsored by the Campolindo Track & Field and Cross Country programs. Registration for the virtual event is open through Saturday, July 4; runners can run the 2-mile or 5-mile race on the planned course, or choose their own path. After running the race, runners can submit their times on the website.

Celebrants can also catch some live fireworks by watching the virtual show in Livermore from 9-10 p.m. Saturday.

Around the nation

As some final options, viewers can watch the fireworks shows happening in New York and Washington D.C. on Independence Day. In New York, the “Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks” can be viewed on NBC at 8 p.m. PT Saturday night. Aside from fireworks, it will feature performances from artists like Lady A (formerly known as Lady Antebellum), The Killers, Tim McGraw, etc.  

As for the Washington, D.C. fireworks show, viewers can see “A Capitol Fourth,” Saturday at 8 p.m. on PBS. The show will be hosted by John Stamos and Vanessa Williams and will include performances from artists like Patti LaBelle, The Temptations, Chrissy Metz and Andy Grammar. The show can also be livestreamed from YouTube and Facebook.

How do you plan to celebrate Independence Day? Tell us about it in the comments!