* Fort Payne: Gates to Wildcat Stadium at Fort Payne High School open at 5 p.m. CDT Tuesday. Residents can enjoy free hot dogs, drinks and entertainment before the fireworks at dark.
* Blairsville: Vogel State Park celebrates Independence Day with a flag-raising ceremony, bicycle parade, pedal boat races, sandcastle building competition, watermelon eating, sack races, egg tosses and greased pole climbing. Activities start at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday. $5 parking. 706-745-2628
* Dalton: The Parks and Recreation Department is coordinating activities at Heritage Point Park starting at 3 p.m. Wednesday with registration for the Little Miss Rec contest, which begins at 5 p.m. A DJ will provide music for listening and dancing starting at 5 p.m., continuing with patriotic music during the fireworks. Food vendors will be on-site. Eating contests will start at 6 p.m. (Krystal hamburgers) and 6:30 p.m. (Little Debbie snack cakes). Professional wrestlers will entertain from 7 to 9 p.m. The evening concludes with fireworks at 9:30 p.m. Facilities and operations manager Mike Brown said the 1,300 rounds make it the largest fireworks show in North Georgia.
* Dunlap: The celebration starts at 10 a.m. CDT Wednesday with a parade through downtown, a more than 50-year tradition. A flag-raising will follow at the courthouse around 11 a.m. Entertainment, headlined by Joe Sanders and the Fever Band, is scheduled throughout the day, along with games and concessions. Fireworks start at dusk.
* Etowah: The Old-Fashioned Fourth of July Celebration will take place Wednesday, opening with a Boy Scout pancake breakfast from 7 to 10 a.m. A road race follows at 8 a.m. Opening ceremonies for Etowah's biggest event of the year are set for 9:45 a.m. at the L&N Depot. Entertainment is scheduled throughout the day. Events include a beauty pageant from 10 to 11:30 a.m. and family games from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Food and craft vendors will be set up all day. Fireworks are scheduled at 9:35 p.m. 423-263-2228
* Spring City: Residents will Shake the Lake with a daylong celebration Tuesday at Veterans Park on Watts Bar Lake. Events start at 9 a.m. with registration for the Little Mr. and Miss Firecracker pageant for children up to 8 years old. The contest follows at 10 a.m. Watermelon and pickle-eating contests will follow the pageant. Also for children are a diaper derby for crawlers at 4 p.m. and a teddy bear run for toddlers at 4:15 p.m. A duck race in Town Creek will start at 5 p.m. Music, including karaoke, is scheduled all day. The featured band is Rex & The Ramblers from 6 to 9 p.m. About 40 food and craft vendors will be set up. Fireworks will end the day at dark.