Calendar of Events

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The Fife and Drum Corps perform at the National Archives July 4 celebration.

Gen. George Washington reads from the Declaration of Independence. Photo by Chuck Fazio for the National Archives.

Fourth of July 2016 Celebration

Join us Monday, July 4, as we celebrate our nation's birthday!

Find information about events: in Washington, DC | at the Presidential Libraries

If you can't come in person, join our celebration through US National Archives YouTube Channel

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#ArchivesJuly4—Celebrate With Us

Share your experience on social media using the hashtag #ArchivesJuly4. See a list of social media activities you can take part in.

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Events on the National Mall

July 4th at the National Archives is made possible in part by the National Archives Foundation with the generous support of John Hancock and Dykema.

Events Schedule

Celebrate Independence Day at the National Archives Building in Washington, DC.

This fun-for-all-ages program is free! No tickets are needed. The event is outside, and the audience sits on the steps of the building, facing Constitution Avenue.

Too hot? Indoor seating is available in the William G. McGowan Theater. Email specialevents@nara.gov

Friday, July 1
TimeEvent
Noon Live musical performance by PanLara Youth Steel Orchestra
2-5 p.m. Transcribe-a-thon in the National Archives Innovation Hub and online. Register now!
Saturday, July 2
TimeEvent
Noon Live musical performance by DC Legendary Musicians
Monday, July 4
TimeEvent
8–9:30 a.m.Sign a facsimile of the Declaration of Independence, find a good seat on the steps, share your #ISignedTheDeclaration on social media!
9-9:45 a.m.Watch live performances on the Constitution Avenue stage
10-11 a.m.Declaration of Independence Reading Ceremony
  • Greetings from Allison Seymour, Fox 5 News Anchor
  • Presentation of colors by the Continental Color Guard*
  • Performance of the National Anthem by Caleb Green
  • Performance by the Fife and Drum Corps*
  • Remarks by Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero
  • Dramatic reading of the Declaration of Independence by re-enactors portraying Abigail Adams, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, John Hancock, Ned Hector, Thomas Jefferson, and George Washington.

*Continental Color Guard and Fife and Drum Corps provided by U.S. 3rd Infantry, the Old Guard

11 a.m.-4 p.m.Inside the National Archives Building
  • Enjoy hands-on family activities in the Boeing Learning Center:
    • Collect autographs
    • Make cockades
    • Listen to stories of our patriotic past
    • Make colonial-style wigs and dress in period clothing
    • Sign the Declaration of Independence
    • Write with a quill pen
    • Set your name in type
  • Between noon and 4 p.m., meet Revolutionary figures Abigail and John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, John Hancock, Ned Hector, Thomas Jefferson, and George Washington.
  • Taste American Heritage Chocolate® in the Visitor Orientation Plaza
11-11:45 a.m. Live musical performance by Brass Connection.
11:45 a.m.Watch the parade go by outside the National Archives.

All exhibits, including the Rotunda for the Charters of Freedom, which houses the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution, and the Bill of Rights, will be open to the public from 10 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. on July 4.

If youíre joining us on the National Mall, donít forget to share your Independence Day experience with us on social media!

Events at the Presidential Libraries

All 13 of our museums at the Presidential Libraries are open on the 4th of July.

Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum, Hyde Park, NY
The Library will host a Family Fun Day on July 2 to continue our 75th anniversary celebrations and honor our nation’s 240th birthday. Activities will include a hot air balloon ride, circus acts, a swing band and dance floor, a wide variety of local food trucks and a special “Royal Hot Dog Stand” to honor the famous picnic in Hyde Park hosted by the President for King George VI and Queen Mary. There will be a wide range of performances and activities for the entire family. Members of the 240th MP Regiment will also be on hand in period uniforms to discuss the wartime security of the President.

Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum, Simi Valley, CA
To celebrate our Nation’s 240th birthday, the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library is hosting a day full of family-fun activities. This year’s celebration includes patriotic concerts, family entertainment, games, crafts, and more. The Los Angeles Police Department Concert Band will perform at 1 p.m. in our Courtyard. Re-enactors will talk about the lives of Thomas Jefferson, Ulysses S. Grant, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Betsy Ross. All outdoor activities are free and run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The admission rates apply to view the Ronald Reagan Presidential Museum and the Air Force One Pavilion, which will be open until 5 p.m.

George Bush Presidential Library and Museum, College Station, TX
The George Bush Presidential Library and Museum is honored to host the College Station Noon Lions Clubs "I Love America" Fourth of July Celebration. The Museum will be open from 9:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. with free admission all day. Concessions start at 5:30 p.m. and include Slovacek’s sausage on a stick, kettle corn, roasted nuts, popcorn, snow cones, refreshments. There will also be free watermelon while supplies last. Live entertainment starts and the Kids Zone will open at 6 p.m. The Kids Zone includes games and bounce houses, face painting and Paw Paw’s Train. The evening will culminate with a spectacular fireworks display and concert by the Brazos Valley Symphony Orchestra.

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