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Marblehead 4th of July Back in Full Force: A Guide to the Weekend

With a wide range of options all weekend long, Marblehead knows how to do Independence Day right. And for the first time in more than two years, one of Marblehead’s best celebrations is back in all its glory.


Marblehead’s 4th of July celebration honors the United States of America as well as Marblehead’s contribution to our country’s history, and the role that our many local artists have played in beautifying our little town and far beyond. 

With countless activities for children and adults–visitors and locals alike–the upcoming weekend promises to be one of the best 4th of July celebrations yet. To help facilitate the fun, here is an overview of the activities available this coming Thursday through Monday, June 30 through July 4, 2022. 


The annual Horribles Parade, a children’s parade with participants dressing up to celebrate various aspects of Marblehead and US history, is happening this year on the morning of Monday, July 4th at 10AM, with details on registration and viewing here


The 4th of July fireworks, which have been on hiatus throughout the pandemic, are back on. Per Marblehead’s long-standing tradition, the Harbor Illumination marks the beginning of the fireworks festivities. Beginning at 9:00 PM on July 4th, the perimeter of the entire harbor will be lit with flares, from Chandler Hovey Park on the Neck all the way across the causeway and down to Fort Sewall on the mainland. 


The actual fireworks begin at 9:15 PM. Marblehead offers a variety of excellent viewing locations. The barge itself is located at the mouth of the harbor, so the best spots for up-close observation (and loud noises) are at Chandler Hovey Park on the Neck and at Fort Sewall or Crocker Park. If you are going to venture out to Marblehead Neck to view the fireworks, be prepared for a bit of traffic getting back across the causeway after the conclusion of the show. For those with small children who might want a quieter and more distant viewing opportunity, try out Riverhead Beach. A map of suggested viewing options is available here.


Should the fireworks have to be canceled due to poor weather (see updated weather report here), July 5 is the rain date. 


The Festival of Arts offers a jam-packed schedule of events all weekend long, including a sand sculpture competition at Devereux Beach, exhibits at local churches, artisans marketplaces, and so much more. Trolleys will be available on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday to transport visitors from the designated parking area at Marblehead High School to the exhibit areas.  A full listing of all weekend events is available here


In addition, be sure to stop by St. Michael's Church for the Heavenly Lobster Lunch, which takes place July 2, 3, and 4th from 11AM to 3PM on the Summer Street lawn. Now celebrating its 50th year, the lunch sends proceeds to various charities including the School in St. Thomas Archaie Haiti, Lifebridge, My Brother's Table, Family Promise, Marblehead Counseling Center, and Friends of Marblehead's Abandoned Animals. 


Editor's Note: This article has been updated to reflect additional July 4th weekend activities.


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