The summer season is one of the best times to visit Bend thanks to the perfect climate and entertaining activities in the area. The same can be said for Independence Day, as our country’s birthday is celebrated the way it is meant to be celebrated in Bend. Here is how you can spend the 4th of July in Bend Oregon during the summer season:
Catch the Fireworks
Each year Bend has a dazzling display of incredible fireworks that are launched from Pilot Butte at 10:00pm sharp. While the fireworks can easily be seen from homes in the northeastern part of town, you probably do not know many of the locals by this point. Instead, relax at one of the many city parks that have a view of Pilot Butte. Bring a blanket or some lawn chairs and enjoy one of the best fireworks displays in all of Oregon.
Old-Fashioned 4th of July Celebration
One of the more unique celebrations found in Bend during the year is the Old-Fashioned 4th of July Celebration. You will not find any technologically advanced presentation but instead a full day of “old timey” activities to celebrate with. The event starts with the Pancake Breakfast hosted in Drake Park from 8:00am to 11:00am. Stuff your face full of freshly-prepared pancakes, bacon, and all of your other breakfast favorites.
Up next on the agenda is the Pet Parade that has been hosted since the 1930s. At 10:00am you can see this kooky parade of Bend residents, their canine friends, and a few farm animals to round out the experience. The parade can easily be viewed from anywhere in the downtown neighborhood. The Old-Fashioned 4th of July Celebration brings the daytime events to a close with the main event hosted back over at Drake Park from 11:00am to 4:00pm. Enjoy all kinds of activities including food booths, games, live music, and more than 130 artisans from the area. Now that is how Bend celebrates Independence Day!
Enjoy the Lakes and Rivers on 4th of July in Bend Oregon
Round out the rest of your Bend 4th of July with a relaxing time in the nearby rivers and lakes. You can find all of your water equipment such as kayaks, canoes, and floating tubes from local shops. Make sure to see the incredible Deschutes River while in town!
The Deschutes River winds through town, and you can easily access it at the Bend Whitewater Park, where you can practice your SUP, whitewater rafting, and tubing skills. Or try your hand at bodyboarding and surfing. Located near the Old Mill District, the park is city-owned and run and offers a variety of river activities.
The Deschutes River Trail is a perfect way to enjoy a walk through historic downtown Bend but also enjoy a scenic hike with views of the surrounding Cascades. The north end of the trail is more natural, winding through tall juniper trees and alongside canyons and the river, and is great for wildlife and bird watching. The southern end of the trail runs through the Old Mill District, so there are plenty of shops, bars, and restaurants to provide welcome stopping points along your hike.
Spend the day on the Deschutes River, Rouge River, Crooked River, or Fall River and fly fish for rainbow or brook trout, take a gentle tube ride, or enjoy an exhilarating whitewater rafting adventure. Book a guided fishing trip on a local river or one of the area’s lovely lakes like Cascade Lake or East Lake, where you can fish or just spend the day paddle-boarding, kayaking, or swimming.
While you’re in town, after all the fireworks, hike up Pilot Butte. It’s one of the things every visitor to Bend should do at least once. This old cinder cone has several trails up to the scenic viewpoint, winding through juniper and sage trees. The panoramic view at the summit of Bend, the high desert, and the Cascade Mountains is amazing.
Enjoy a Cookout or Craft Brew on the 4th of July in Bend
Have your own cookout before you head back downtown for the fireworks. Most of our Bend vacation rentals have grills out on the back deck where you can show off your grilling skills. Pick up a few local “beer fed, then grass finished” Black Angus steaks from Oregon Steak to get started, or make it easy on yourself and order BBQ and all the fixin’s from Baldy’s BBQ, the Pickled Pig BBQ & Café or South yo Mouth. There’s nothing really more American than BBQ on the 4th!
Of course, after The Old-Fashioned 4th of July Celebration ends around 4pm, you may want to go back to your rental for a nap or a meal. You may also decide to stick around downtown for BBQ and a brew. You won’t have time to hit all the stops on the Bend Ale Trail, but you could get a few in before the fireworks begin.
Your Independence Day Getaway
Now that you know how to enjoy your next 4th of July in Bend Oregon, make sure to choose our vacation rentals for your stay. Avoid the busy hotels of the season and enjoy some privacy in our exclusive homes. Contact us today and see what vacation rentals await you for your next Independence Day vacation getaway!