Two kids from Quincy, John Hancock and John Adams, ignited American independence. So it’s only natural that America’s Most Patriotic City celebrates the 4th of July in grand fashion with beachfront bonfires, block parties, historically-inspired performances and re-enactments.
A list of celebratory events around the city appears below. You can see more at DiscoverQuincy.com.
Hancock, born in Quincy Center on the site of what’s now the Quincy Historical Society, funded the early years of the American Revolution and presided over the Second Continental Congress that declared independence on July 4, 1776. This Quincy kid’s dramatically scripted name remains a symbol of defiance and a synonym for “signature” itself 240 years later.
Adams then wrote to Abigail Adams at their home back in Quincy that the Declaration of Independence “ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with (Shows), Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.”
And so we still celebrate American independence today in the manner Adams wanted – here in Quincy and from sea to shining sea.
Saturday, July 2
The Letters of John and Abigail Adams Set to Opera & Orchestra
The performance is made possible, in part, by a grant from Opera America. A free trolley from the Adams National Historical Park Visitor Center (1250 Hancock Street) will drop off at the location.
Tours of the 1686 Dorothy Quincy Homestead
John Adams Health Walk
Sunday, July 3
Merrymount Freedom Run & Beach Party
Hough’s Neck Family Fun Day (10 a.m. – 1 p.m.), Edgewater Drive
This event is sponsored through donations from local businesses, elected officials, volunteers and the Hough’s Neck Community Council.
Hough’s Neck Independence Day Block Party
Monday, July 4
America’s Best Idea: National Parks and America’s Independence
2 p.m. – 3:30 p.m. Independence Forever: Re-enactment of the Continental Congress Become a delegate to the Second Continental Congress and reenact the passage of the Declaration of Independence. Join the “band of brothers” who changed the course of history in 1776 and sign the historic document.
3:30 p.m. The Reading of the Declaration of Independence
4 p.m. – 6 p.m. Jefferson & Adams: A Stage Play
Canoe Tour of the Lower Neponset River & Historic Walking Tour of the Quincy Quarries Reservation
Guided tour showcases the flora, fauna and environmental issues of the Neponset River waters of Milton, Dorchester and Quincy. This six-mile tour is recommended for intermediate paddlers. Participants must know how to swim. Canoes are available for use or participants can bring their own canoe/kayak.
Walk to Granite Quarries, first commercial railway in America, incline & Lyons Turning Mill. To register, call Blue Hill Adventure & Quarry Museum, 781-326- 0079 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, and provide name, phone number, and number of participants.
107th Annual Squantum 4th of July Parade
Sponsored by the Merrymount Association, this parade engages the whole neighborhood with many streets making their own floats. Parade Route: Merrymount School on Agawam Road to Narragansett Road, Chickatabot Road, Norton Road, Sea Street, Samoset Road, Longwood Road, Moreland Road, Waban Road, Maypole Road, Squanto Road, Victoria Road and back to Merrymount Beach.
Tuesday, July 5
Guided Tour of 376-year-old Hancock Cemetery
Every day through November 12
Church of the Presidents and the Presidential Crypt, 1306 Hancock St.
Visitors can touch their granite tombs, draped in period flags, and see prize artifacts of American history, including the birth notice of John Hancock (whose father was minister of the congregation) and the July 4, 1826 death notice of John Adams.
The church is a classic example of Greek Revival architecture designed by Alexander Parris, who also gave Boston Quincy Market.