- Getting Around
Freedom Fair Express
Freedom Fair is a blast!
For over 35 years, volunteers with the non-profit Tacoma Events Commission have presented Tacoma's annual Freedom Fair. It's the largest 4th of July festival in the Northwest and was named as one of the ten "World's Best" fireworks events by the Travel Channel. The Wall Street Journal, CNN and USA Today have also honored it as one of the nation's best summer events. Activities begin at 10:00 am and will continue through the end of the spectacular fireworks show that starts at 10:10 pm.
FAIR OPENS AT 10 AM
Arrive early and enjoy a full day of family entertainment. Admission donations, crucial to fund the event and keep it going strong, will be collected at the gate: $3 per person, $7 per family, $15 Patriot and $20 Hero.
ROD & CUSTOM CAR SHOW
Pick your favorite hot rod and custom classic on display next to The Lobster Shop.
Park FREE all day at TCC Park & Ride or the Tacoma Dome Station, no matter which bus you catch!
To make it easier for you, bus services are color coded:
- Yellow = First Student
- Blue = Pierce Transit
Registered SHUTTLE customers can schedule trips to McCarver & Ruston Way. Service begins at 10am and runs to Old Town until 8 pm sharp. Pick-ups begin immediately after the fireworks end. Registered SHUTTLE riders may call 253.581.8000, option 1, then option 2, one to five days in advance to reserve rides. Normal Pierce Transit fares apply.
LEAVING OLD TOWN AFTER THE FIREWORKS
Catch an express bus from either end of the fair! From Old Town at the east end or from Camp Patriot at the west end back to TDS and TCC immediately after the fireworks. All passengers who arrived by bus and require the use of a lift-equipped vehicle on the return trip from Old Town should board Pierce Transit buses on N 30th Street, just west of McCarver Street.
Round-trip Ride Tickets are good on both services and can be purchased at ticket booths for cash, debit or credit card. Tickets are $5.00 per person and kids 9 and under ride free! Purchase Ride Tickets at:
- TCC & TDS: see TCC and TDS maps.
- In advance: through the Freedom Fair website at freedomfair.com.
Pierce Transit riders with a valid ORCA card, or current All Day Pass, can show their card at the booth and receive a Freedom Fair Ride Ticket at no additional charge.
Cash will not be accepted on the bus. Tickets must be purchased from the ticket booth.
LOCAL ROUTESRoutes 13 and 15 will NOT operate on July 4th. All other local Pierce Transit service will operate on a Sunday schedule.
NEW THIS YEAR!
Pierce Transit and First Student, in collaboration with Tacoma Events Commission, will provide express buses from Tacoma Community College (TCC) at S 19th & Mildred, or from Tacoma Dome Station (TDS) at 610 Puyallup Ave. Choose whether you go to Old Town or Camp Patriot (see the events and activities map on back).
- Pierce Transit service runs to Old Town every 30 minutes with the first bus leaving TDS and TCC starting at 10:00 am.
- First Student service runs every 30 minutes to Camp Patriot with the first bus leaving TDS and TCC at 10:15 am.
- Both services stop going to the Freedom Fair at 8:00 pm sharp, then resume after the fireworks.
- Return trips to TDS and TCC will operate until 8:00 pm sharp, then resume after the fireworks end. Anyone wishing to leave between 8:00 pm and the end of the fireworks should consider other options.
More than 150 artists, craft vendors and commercial exhibitors transform the Ruston Way waterfront into a colorful and bustling market. Merchants offer toys, pet products, clothing, jewelry, art, home decorations and more! Enjoy everything Freedom Fair has to offer and discover all 50 places to get great food and beverages!
TACOMA POWER AIR SHOW - 1:30 to 3:30PM
Thrill to exciting aerobatic performances by top pilots and aviators. Featuring:
- Greg Howard in his Gile G-200
- John Sessions and the Historic Flight Foundation
- Crew flying the TBM Avenger and the P-51 Mustang
- The “Rock-n-Roll Airshow Man”
- Will Allen in his Pitts
- Vicky Benzing with her Stearman
- Mrazek Air Shows flies a T-6, a Yak, and an L-29, and
- Renny Price will soar again in his SU-29.
FIREWORKS GRAND FINALE
At 10:10 pm, the spectacular fireworks show will begin with a symphony of light and sound exploding over Commencement Bay. In order to offer prime viewing by the festival audience gathered on shore, thousands of pyrotechnic effects will be fired from a barge centered between the Ruston Way waterfront parks. The show is synchronized to music played on Click 98.9 FM, KLAY 1180 AM, and the fair’s stages. The best places for viewing are between Jack Hyde Park and Marine Park. The barge location will improve views from all waterfront locations.
FUN FOR KIDS OF ALL AGES!
The waterfront is packed with great family activities. The world’s longest-running Beach Pole Vault event is located by the Les Davis Pier. Live music will be heard at Duke’s Chowder House, Katie Downs, Dickman Mill Park, The Ram and at Camp Patriot next to the Lobster Shop. The La Stella Foundation will be presenting a kid’s fun zone featuring inflatable bounce houses and fun activities for kids at Camp Patriot. At the east end of Marine Park your family can join in the Congo Productions Drum Circle. Don’t miss the Warm 106.9 Family Fun Stage near Katie Downs. Three big locations along Ruston Way are filled with great food. Don’t miss the group of food vendors by the Les Davis Pier, Silver Cloud Inn, Dickman Mill Park and Camp Patriot. There’s no need to cook this year –over 45 food vendors will offer up tasty treats from around the world, and many American favorites. Along with the many food vendors plan to visit over 100 artists, craft vendors and commercial exhibitors.