Wawa Welcome America: Everything you need to know

Wawa Welcome America — a multi-day festival celebrating America's birthday in America's birthplace — continues ahead of the Fourth of July holiday.

Here's a look at what to expect for the 12 hours of non-stop commemorations and celebrations at Independence Mall Thursday. The fun kicks off in Philadelphia's Historic District at 10 a.m.


– Celebration of Freedom: 10 a.m. – 11 a.m. at Independence Hall

– Free Museum Day: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at Bartram’s Garden House / 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the National Museum of American Jewish History

– USA Independence Day Parade: 11 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. at 5th and Chestnut streets

– America's Birthday Party with Betsy Ross and Termini Brothers Bakery: 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Independence Visitor Center

– Children's Naturalization Ceremony: 1:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. at the Betsy Ross House

– Party on the Parkway: 12 p.m. – 7 p.m. at Benjamin Franklin Parkway

– Welcome America Concert: Begins 7 p.m. at Benjamin Franklin Parkway; starring Jennifer Hudson and The Philly POPS BIG Band with special guest Meghan Trainor

– Welcome America Fireworks: Begins 9:30 p.m. at Benjamin Franklin Parkway


A number of street closures and parking restrictions will be in effect throughout the city. See here for complete details.


Staging will take place in the 400 block of Chestnut Street and proceed west on Chestnut to 9th Street, north on 9th Street to Market Street, east on Market Street to the dispersal area on Front Street.

All streets affected by the parade will be cleaned before being re-opened to vehicular traffic.


Sign up for free text alerts from the City. Text AMERICA to 888-777 to receive info on weather, transit, safety and event updates.


Regional rail service, the Market Frankford Line and Broad Street Line will operate on a Sunday schedule with additional cars after the Parkway celebrations. See here for more details.

For full details on SEPTA’s transit options, see here.

For full details on NJTransit routes and schedules, see here.


City officials are urging the public to refrain from bringing alcohol, coolers, open containers or cooking equipment.

Barbecuing on the Parkway, contraband and illegal substances (including firearms or fireworks) are absolutely prohibited.


Hobbyist drone pilots are not permitted to fly over Wawa Welcome America during both the USA Independence Day Parade and the Party on the Parkway.

Commercial drone pilots are permitted to fly only if registered with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and have made the appropriate notifications to the FAA, nearby airports and heliports.