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July 4 Change of Venue for Santa Clara Tradition

For the first time in several years, the City of Santa Clara will not celebrate the Fourth of July at Central Park. Instead, the annual event will take place in the Northside at Mission College.

Earlier this year, the City announced the change in venue for a myriad of reasons. For one, families used to watch the fireworks from the fields at Central Elementary School. But Santa Clara Unified School District (SCUSD) has since fenced the fields off for safety. While SCUSD will let the City use the fields this year, it would come at an extra cost.

There was also safety to consider.


“In addition, conditions at Central Park have changed. A Magical Bridge Playground is currently under construction at Central Park and isn’t scheduled for completion until August 2024, and the George F. Haines International Swim Center is closed for public use,” said Santa Clara Chief Public Information Officer Janine De la Vega.

“Both of these facilities represent a significant footprint at Central Park,” De la Vega continued. “Given the large number of residents who attended the event in the past and the current conditions at Central Park, the reason for the change in venue was to ensure a safe event for residents and limit any potential negative impacts to Central Park.”

De la Vega says holding the event at Mission College comes with some added safety measures.

“Another benefit to the change in venue is the ability to establish a secure perimeter leading into the central plaza at Mission College, where the event will be held. A secure perimeter will help provide a safe environment for all event attendees,” said De la Vega. “In addition, Mission College campus police and security will be working with Santa Clara Police to manage traffic both on campus and in the surrounding neighborhoods.”

While event attendees may bemoan the change in a tradition, they certainly can’t argue that the parking situation will be better. Mission College will offer free, on-site parking to all attendees.

The event is also expected to have the same feel as the one in Central Park, with food trucks, games for the kids and live performances from local organizations.

Families that stick around until 9:40 p.m. will get to see the fireworks display at nearby California’s Great America.

Gates for this year’s event open at 3 p.m., with the festivities starting at 4 p.m. Things will wrap up at 10 p.m.

The City says coolers are allowed and will be checked at the gates. Alcohol will not be allowed on site, and neither will staked umbrellas or canopies. Pets are also not allowed unless they are registered service animals.

For more details on the event, visit the City’s website at and search “4th of July.”

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