Mesa: Arizona Celebration of Freedom Offers Many Ways to Honor America

The 15th Annual Arizona Celebration of Freedom Presented by AT&T (ACOF) is guaranteed to be one night of spectacular FREE fun and entertainment. The state's coolest festival to celebrate America's freedom and independence is Thursday, July 4 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Mesa Convention Center and Mesa Amphitheatre campus, 263 N. Center St., and along Center Street between First Street and University Drive.

The temperatures may be hot, but you can stay cool at the event with Cool Zones that include giant fans and misters. There will be many activities, displays and events inside Mesa Convention Center.


Entertainment on two outdoor stages: Mesa Amphitheatre and Stage America, located on the grass near Center and Second Streets.

The Salute to America program at 9:15 p.m. on Stage America will be followed at approximately 9:30 p.m. by the Fireworks Extravaganza. The fireworks display, as is tradition, will be accompanied by patriotic music. Please do not bring your pets to the fireworks display due to the loud noises.

The event always has something new. This year, the Great All-American Car Show has a new twist. It is being operated by Infamous Mopar AZ, a nonprofit organization that provides opportunities for service members, veterans and their families to experience the camaraderie and fun of automotive therapy. More information is available about Infamous Mopar AZ on its website.

For the first time, ACOF will begin with a flyover by four F3-25 jets from Luke Air Force Base between 6 p.m. and 6:15 p.m.

Also new this year is the Primetime Grill semi-truck with grills, smokers, ovens and everything needed to serve up barbecue, burgers and other delicious delights. Don't miss out on this sensational feast on wheels!

Great All-American Freedom Farm was a big hit in its 2023 ACOF debut and it's back again. It's a great way to see vintage and new tractors and other equipment and learn more about Arizona's farm heritage. Among the items to see is a 1923 John Deere Model D, one of the earliest-made tractors. Thanks to the Arizona Early Day Gas Engine and Tractor Association for participating.

Another spectacular attraction is the Let Freedom Ring Laser Light Show inside the Mesa Convention Center. There will be three 20-minute shows at 7 p.m., 8 p.m. and 9 p.m. featuring spectacular laser displays, photos and patriotic music.

The Patriotic Superhero Stunt Show always draws big crowds. It features professional BMX stunt riders performing amazing stunts and jumps on customized ramps near the All-American Food Court. The riders are the top talent from right here in Arizona, and you don't want to miss the awesome finales! Performances are scheduled at 6:30 p.m., 7:20 p.m. and 8:10 p.m.

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BYOB: Bring Your Own Bottle. Stop by the Water Bottle Refill Station outside Mesa Amphitheatre and fill up your water bottle for FREE! Courtesy of City of Mesa Water Resources, you can stay cool and hydrated while you enjoy the celebration.

Beat the heat with our new outdoor mist-chilled All-American Food Court. Grab your favorite treat or a meal at the Primetime Grill semitruck under the cool mist. Beer gardens, offering beer, soda and water for sale, will be located at the Stage America Tailgate Zone and the All-American Food Court

The kids can stay cool with the Splash Zone featuring inflatable waterslides.

Mesa Convention Center will host Historic Flags of the U.S. at 6:30 p.m., 7;15 p.m., 8 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. The Hall of Flags features flags from every state and our U.S. territories.

A Revolutionary War reenactment at 6:45 p.m., 7:45 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. at the Mesa Amphitheatre from the local reenactment group We Make History. During the reenactments, black powder firearms will be in use. They are not dangerous to spectators but produce loud gunshot sounds. Life in 1776 Revolutionary War artifacts will be displayed inside the Mesa Amphitheatre.

Between the Revolutionary War reenactments at the Mesa Amphitheatre, enjoy the patriotic sounds of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Arizona Band. The band is scheduled to perform at 7:05 p.m., 8:05 p.m. and 9:05 p.m.

Fallen Soldier Memorial is a breathtaking memorial honoring the Arizona fallen heroes from the war on terrorism in Iraq and Afghanistan. The memorial will be located inside the Mesa Convention Center.

A naturalization ceremony at 5 p.m. inside Mesa Convention Center features 100 people from 31 countries taking the oath of citizenship.

Patriotic Military Showcase allows you to get up close and personal with various military vehicles and learn more about how you can support our troops.

America's Arts and Culture Showcase, inside Mesa Convention Center, featuring crafts and displays from the i.d.e.a. Museum, Arizona Museum of Natural History and Mesa Arts Center

Tailgate Zone, located in the grass next to Stage America, will offer plenty of games for adults and kids to enjoy, such as a football toss, basketball hoops, field goal kick and cornhole toss.

Yankee Doodle Kids' Zone offers free carnival-style games for kids and face painting.

Several downtown Mesa businesses are offering food and drink specials to celebrate the return of the Arizona Celebration of Freedom. A list of specials is available on the Downtown Mesa Association website.

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FREE parking is available in all lots and on-street parking areas throughout downtown Mesa. ADA parking is in the lot at the northeast corner of Martin Luther King Jr. Way (MLK Way, formerly 3rd Place) and Center Street. Only vehicles with appropriate stickers, license plates or hangtags will be allowed in the lot.

The following streets will be closed or restricted from 5 p.m. Wednesday, July 3 to 5 a.m. Friday, July 5:

Center Street between University Drive and north post office driveway (1st Street) - Access is maintained to the post office driveway on Center Street north of 1st Street
post office access maintained using Center Street

2nd Street at Center Street
through traffic detoured at Macdonald
local access up to Drew

MLK Way/3rd Place at Center
through traffic detoured at Macdonald and Centennial Way
local access maintained on 3rd Place up to Drew - access is maintained to the alley east of Drew

Hibbert between 2nd Street and University
no access permitted

3rd Place between Pasadena and Pomeroy
no access permitted

Pomeroy between 2nd Street (north of apartment entrance) and University
local access up to the apartment entrance

Traffic will be detoured around the event via 1st Street, Country Club Drive, University Drive and Mesa Drive.


Passengers can use light rail into downtown Mesa, exit at the Center and Main Street stop and travel north just two blocks on Center Street to reach the event.

Valley Metro light rail will operate on the Sunday schedule for the 4th with enhanced service beginning at 5 p.m. The last westbound train will depart Gilbert Road at approximately 12:35 a.m.

Valley Metro buses will be running on a Sunday schedule. There will be no RAPID or Express bus service. Customer service and transit center windows will be closed.

The Mesa Downtown BUZZ will not operate on July 4. The Downtown Buzz will be on detour July 3 from 5 p.m. until end-of-day between University and Main on Center Street to allow for set up of the Arizona Celebration of Freedom. Passengers may board the Downtown Buzz at Centennial/Main or north of University Drive during this time.

Information about bus service and light rail service is available at or (602) 253-5000.

For more information about the Arizona Celebration of Freedom Presented by AT&T, including a complete list of items you can and cannot bring to the event, visit

The 2024 Arizona Celebration of Freedom Presented by AT&T is sponsored by the City of Mesa; Mesa Convention Center; Mesa Amphitheatre; Sertoma Club; Mesa Recycles; Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport; Willmeng Construction; Prensa Arizona; VCA Animal Hospitals; 95.5 The Mountain; Celerion, Nesbitt, Sundt; Downtown Mesa Association; Mesa Chamber of Commerce; Visit Mesa; Niagara Cares; Delta Hotels; United Food Bank and Renewal by Andersen.

Filed Under: Government, City

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