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Ludington Area Jaycees Freedom Festival

July 3rd-4th, 2024

Patriotism is alive and well here in Ludington, Michigan, as demonstrated in the annual Freedom Festival, held every year since 1874. Sponsored by the Ludington Area Jaycees, this event is one of the few great July 4th festivals still in existence in Michigan.

Mancino's Pizza & Grinders
Old Hamlin Restaurant

Children and Pet Parade 

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2024, Line-up begins at 5pm with step-off at 6pm

The fun begins with the Children’s and Pet Parade at the south end of Ferry Street in downtown Ludington. Local children decorate their wagons or bikes, and even try to dress the family pet in red, white, and blue. Categories are Patriotism, Originality, Creative Use of Pets, and Themed Group; with prizes awarded to the winner of each. The first 250 participants will receive a goody bag. It’s a great kick-off to the holiday, and so much fun to watch. Line-up is at the corner of Ferry and Loomis Streets with the parade heading east to Waterfront Park.

AJ's Party Port
AM Carferry Cruises Ad

Freedom Festival 1-Mile Dash

Thursday, July 4th, 2024

This is a 1-Mile Fun Run where runners are invited to run the Grand Parade route prior to the parade step off on July 4th to help raise money for the evenings fireworks. The annual fireworks display is funded 100% by donations.

Advanced entry is $35 and late entry online and on race day is $40 Entry includes a t-shirt and a finisher’s medal. Prizes will be awarded to top male and female runners. Shirts are only guaranteed to those who pre-register by June 24th, 2024. Remaining shirts will be available first come/first serve at packet pickup/registration on race day. Registration begins at 12:30pm at Leveaux Park- 900 E. Ludington Ave., Race begins at 1:35pm.

Register at eventbrite.com!

Military Veterans lead the parade. | Photo by Todd & Brad Reed Photography

Freedom Festival Grand Parade

Thursday, July 4th, 2024 at 2pm

The Freedom Festival Grand Parade gets underway July 4th and features floats, bands, politicians, local residents, and of course, the Scottville Clown Band. Thousands line Ludington Avenue to watch this hometown parade.

The route travels downtown from Madison Street to Lakeshore Drive and is a great way to celebrate the warmth and excitement of our nation’s birthday.

Register a float at eventbrite.com!

Fireworks Over Lake Michigan

Thursday, July 4th, 2024 at Dusk

What would July 4th be without fireworks, and Ludington doesn’t disappoint its residents or visitors. On the evening of July 4th starting around dusk (approximately 10:30pm), pick your favorite “viewing” site, such as Stearns Beach, Copeyon Park, or Waterfront Park, and enjoy the show. Basically, anywhere you see water, you’ll see the fireworks. Most people make an evening of it, arriving early to picnic or let the kids enjoy their sparklers. The colorful 20-minute display delights the crowd watching on land and from boats. It’s the perfect ending to this annual celebration. Click here for more information on other firework displays in the area.

Fireworks Sponsorships

The Ludington Area Jaycees are always seeking sponsorships and donations for their Freedom Festival Fireworks which light up Lake Michigan each 4th of July.

The Freedom Festival brings tens of thousands of people to the beautiful Lake Michigan coastal city of Ludington and into local businesses operating there. The event is 100% funded by donations from local businesses, organizations, and individuals.

For more information on the Freedom Festival, please contact the event organizer:

Ludington Area Jaycees  

(231) 843-4663

jciludington.org

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