Downtown Tampa's favorite Independence Day celebration is back for 2018, with plenty of fun for everyone! The annual Tampa Red White & Blue Festival 2018 will be held Wednesday, July 4, beginning at 3:00 p.m. in Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park. Admission to this family-friendly (and pet-friendly) event is free when you RSVP in advance at the festival's Eventbrite link. You can still choose to attend the day of the event, with a $5 community donation suggested for everyone attending aged 12 and up.

Who doesn't love to eat at a Fourth of July party? The Tampa Red White & Blue Festival Food Court has you covered with delicious Southern dishes available for purchase at the event. You can also get your favorite surf and turf options, or traditional holiday fare like hot dogs and BBQ. While you're chowing down, you can also catch live music from Sarasota-based jazz/funk/soul/fusion band Ari and the Alibis, R&B and jazz from The Beatdown Band, or country music from the F&R Music Project.

There will be plenty of activities for the whole family. Everyone can meet Odilion Ozare, who holds the Guinness Book of World Records mark for the world's tallest hat. Magician Raushan Hammond will put on a performance and hold a meet and greet after the show. The family can enjoy a greyhound dog petting area set up by the Sun State Greyhounds Adoption group. On top of all that, there will be a family foodie contest, a laser tag battlefield, and a Tampa Kids CEO zone with lots more fun for the youngest revelers.

Make sure to dress up in your best patriotic outfit... and that goes for your family and your pets, too! There will a Best Dressed in Red, White, & Blue Contest, with winners in adult, kid, and dog categories. Those aren't the only prizes you can win -- there will be lots of giveaways and great raffle drawing all afternoon.

After the party is done, it's just a short walk to the other side of the Tampa Marriott Waterside Hotel & Marina for a perfect view of this year's Downtown Tampa Independence Day Fireworks Celebration! The event has been relocated outside the Tampa Convention Center, making anywhere along the Tampa Riverwalk an ideal place to watch the festivities after dark. Start your July 4th celebration at the Red, White, & Blue Festival and make it a festive Fourth for the whole family!

To see everything happening in Tampa this July 4th, check out Make sure to sign up for email updates on the latest happenings... as always, it's free!

Photo from festival Eventbrite page.