4th of July — Santa Cruz Style

Independence Day is just a couple of weeks away. If you're looking to get out of town — but not too far out of town — may be suggest a jaunt to Santa Cruz? You can expect sun, blue skies and tons of red, white and blue fun to be had. Here are a few ideas for a perfect 4th of July in Santa Cruz County.

Santa Cruz Boardwalk Bands on the Beach

Every Friday night all summer long, classic bands play free concerts on the beach, and on July 3 the premiere Beatles tribute band is on deck. The Sun Kings will be playing favorites from the year 1965 from 6:30 to 8:30pm. Bring a beach towel and picnic basket, and rock the night away.

Santa Cruz Firecracker 10K

Burn a few calories to start your day. The Firecracker 10K has been a Santa Cruz tradition since 1985. With a scenic 10K tackling the "majestic" hills of Pogonip Park, a flat and fast 5K and 1K fun run for kids, this race is perfect for all ages and abilities. And, included in the $20-$40 entry fee is a technical running tee and full pancake breakfast once you cross the finish line.

Scotts Valley Parade & Fireworks

The annual celebration begins with a 3pm parade of classic cars, tricked out trucks and lots of tractors. The procession ends at Skypark Park where you'll find a carnival full of classic American grub, live music and games, and the county's only fireworks display after dark. 

Coastline Cruise

For the best view of the fireworks display, book a cruise with Sailing Santa Cruz. The 1.5 hour evening tour will make sure you're perfectly positioned for the show.