Independence Day at Fort MorganAmerica turns 242 this year, and there are plenty of ways to celebrate the birth of our nation along Alabama’s Coastal Connection. When you’re finished filling up on hotdogs, hamburgers and beer, head to some of these Independence Day celebrations happening all along the beach byway.

As usual, Fort Morgan is blowing it out for this year’s Fourth celebrations. Drop by the historic masonry fort July 3 for their WWI themed day of patriotism. During the day, check out photo galleries showing domestic life, recreation, military training, medical and cavalry at Fort Morgan during WWI. Living history participants dressed in period clothing will be stationed throughout the fort to answer any questions visitors may have. That evening, historians and site staff dressed in period uniform will discuss Fort Morgan history and what life was like for soldiers and women on the fort.

4th of July Fireworks DisplayThe city of Gulf Shores will host its annual Fourth of July Fireworks Celebration July 4 beginning at 9 p.m. from the Gulf State Park Fishing Pier, and what’s better than fireworks on the beach? According to the event officials, the best place to catch the show will be on the Gulf Shores Public Beach and surrounding areas, so don’t miss out!

In Orange Beach, The Wharf is hosting an Independence Day Street Party and Fireworks display. The street party starts at 5 p.m. and includes live entertainment, kid-friendly activities, giveaways and more. The fireworks show starts at 8:45 p.m., and guests can stick around after the fireworks display for the Spectra Sound and Light Spectacular. Admission is free, but face-painting and trampoline jumping costs extra.

A quick detour off the Alabama Coastal Connection is the GulfQuest National Maritime Museum in Mobile. Starting July 4 at 2 p.m., enjoy outdoor festivities like cornhole, an inflatable water slide for kids and a sidewalk chalk competition outside the museum on the Riverfront Promenade for only $5. The Galley, the museum’s in-house restaurant, will serve up hamburgers and hot dogs from 2 to 8 p.m. In addition to the fun outside, GulfQuest’s exhibits will be open from 2 to 6 p.m. with a $5 per person admission. Then at 9 p.m. the city of Mobile will culminate the evening with a fireworks display overlooking the Mobile River.

There’s no shortage of ways to celebrate freedom along the Alabama Coastal Connection. Make sure to pack your sunglasses, your stretchy pants and your camera to capture all the beautiful fireworks displays.