Fireworks Roadtrip Ahead

Ever dream of creating a fireworks-themed vacation?

Imagine spending four days criss-crossing the last 100 Miles of Route 66 in Illinois and along the nation’s mightiest rivers to enjoy brilliant fireworks sparkling across the night skies.

Stop dreaming and make it a reality the summer of 2022 in the Great Rivers & Routes region of southwest Illinois.

From June 26 through July 4 along Route 66 and reflected in the waters of the mighty Mississippi River, fireworks will sparkle and crowds will gasp in awe as flares of color paint the night skies. And, the best part? The celebrations are free and as diverse as the local communities that create the events!

So pack a bag. Hop in the car. Crank some tunes and get ready to create your own Fireworks Holiday Viewing Party.

Fireworks in Alton, IL

Here is a list by date of fireworks celebrations throughout the Great Rivers & Routes region:

  • June 26: The community of Staunton will kick off the fireworks season with its light show on Sunday, June 26. The show begins at dusk at the Staunton Recreational Park.

Check out Blackbird Bakery & Cafe for pre-fireworks treats and Cavataio's Restaurant and Pizzeria for pizza and pastas.

  • July 2: Pre-fireworks entertainment and dining specials are available throughout the Mississippi River community of Grafton. Stroll the streets of this historic town and then set up your chair or blanket along Main Street for stunning fireworks. Fireworks will be launched from Lighthouse Park. Begins when fully dark.
Fireworks bursting over red and white striped lighthouse in Southwest Illinois
  • July 2: Kick off your fireworks travel in Edwardsville, an historic Route 66 community, which will host its annual Edwardsville Independence Day Celebration
    at the American Legion, 58 S. State Route 157. Enjoy concessions, kids’activities, including a bounce house and corn pit, and plenty of food and drinks. Fireworks begin at dusk. Please not the access road to the American Legion will close at 4 p.m. and parking is available at Lincoln Middle School. Shuttle buses will be available for transportation to the fireworks show. Shuttles will run from 4 p.m. to approximately 30 minutes after the fireworks. Before the Edwardsville fireworks, enjoy dinner at Sugarfire Smokehouse, or dine at local favorites including Bella Milano, 1818 Chophouse or Dewey's Pizza among others.

    Stay the night at one of the city's great hotels including Comfort Inn, Country Hearth Inn & Suites, Holiday Inn Express or the newly opened TownePlace Suites.
  • July 2: Fireworks take center stage in Carlinville this July 4th weekend. The show takes place at the Macoupin County Fairgrounds. The entrance opens at 8:30 p.m. and fireworks start at dusk.
  • July 2: Enjoy fireworks on the banks of Gillespie Lake in this community. Fireworks begin at dusk.
  • July 2: Get your kicks on Route 66 in Girard and then enjoy fireworks at Girard Sunset Lake. The show starts at dusk.
  • July 2: Head to Greenfield in Greene County for a day long celebration! The festivities begin at 9 a.m. with a sand volleyball tournament and continue with a giant slip 'n slide suitable for kids and adults, a beer garden, lunch, cornhole tourney, fish fry and live music. The fireworks begin at dusk and the band "Branded" will take the stage following the fireworks. The event takes place at Rives Lake in Greenfield.
  • July 2: Brighton's Schneider Park is the place to be all day Saturday, July 2. Enjoy a Kid's fishing derby and casting contest, a home run derby, BMX racing, a watermelon eating contest and more in addition to food and drink vendors before the fun begins with the fireworks show at dusk. The band "Town Criers" will be on stage from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.
  • July 3: Independence Day starts early in Alton with the annual Alton Fireworks Spectacular at the Liberty Bank Alton Amphitheater. Watch the night skies bloom with color and shimmer in the Mississippi River. Food, drinks and live entertainment highlight this annual event, one of the few in the region set along the banks of the Mississippi. Fireworks at 9:30 p.m. Check out fireworks parties at surrounding restaurants including Bluff City Grill, Old Bakery Beer and Mac's Downtown.
  • July 3: Enjoy fireworks fun at Shipman Lake in Shipman. Fireworks begin at dusk but there will be carryout food available starting at 5 p.m.

There are plenty of overnight options for this leg of your fireworks roadtrip! Watch the fireworks from the comfort of your suite at Alton Cracker Factory located in downtown Alton with stunning river view. Or spend the night at the elegant Beall Mansion, a visitor favorite. The newly remodeled Best Western Premier Alton-St. Louis offers an onsite restaurant. Ride the Amtrak train to Alton for fireworks and stay at the nearby Hampton Inn & Suites. Click here for more overnight options.

Red, orange, and yellow fireworks bursting during Troy Firework display in Southwest Illinois
Troy Fireworks
July 4: Granite City will host it's annual fireworks at Coolidge Junior High.
  • July 4: The annual Family Fun Fest at Glazebrook Park in Godfrey will take place starting at 5 p.m. Enjoy food and drink vendors and family-friendly activities. Fireworks start at 9:15 p.m.
  • July 4: Spend the day in White Hall, located in Greene County, and enjoy Independence Day festivities at Lions Park. The park opens at 10 a.m. with concessions, Bingo, water inflatables, pony rides, ax throwing, slip 'n slide and more. A Cardboard Boat and Kayak Race will be held at 2 p.m. at Custer Park. Fireworks start at 9:30 p.m.

July 4: Fourth of July Fireworks in Troy is arguably the largest fireworks display in southwest Illinois and outside nearby St. Louis. Journey to Tri-Township Park, 410 Wickliffe St., and experience this one-of-a-kind celebration. Fireworks begin at dusk but festivities start at 6 p.m.

Troy is located at the intersection of Interstate 55 and Interstate 70 with easy access to St. Louis and some of the best fireworks in the region. Choose from Holiday Inn Express, Best Western, Red Roof Inn, Super 8 and Motel 6 for an overnight stay.

  • July 4: If you are getting your kicks on Route 66 over Independence Day then stopping at the Route 66 community of Litchfield is a must for fireworks viewing. The Litchfield Independence Day Fireworks celebration at Lake Lou Yaeger, 4943 Beach House Trail, is worth the drive. Enjoy live music from from Vince Martin at 7 p.m. then revel in fireworks over the lake.

Check out the historic Ariston Cafe in Litchfield before the fireworks. The cafe, located on Route 66, has the title of one of the oldest, continuously operating cafes on the nation's Mother Road. Just across the street from the Ariston's neon glory is Jubelt's Bakery and Restaurant offering great desserts and satisfying meals.

For an overnight stay in this Mother Road community, choose from the Hampton Inn, Baymont Inn, America's Best Value Inn, Quality Inn and Super 8.

  • July 4: There is nothing like watching fireworks explode over the prairie. Take a trip to Jerseyville for the annual fireworks event held at the American Legion Fairgrounds, 300 Veterans Memorial Parkway. Fireworks begin at dusk.

Have a yen for pizza, pasta or a simply satisfying meal? George's Local Brew offers burgers, wings and more alongside its quality drinks menu.

Click here for overnight lodging options.