Fourth of July

What You Need to Know about Shell Freedom Over Texas

After two years of virtual celebrations, the full in-person festivities return to Downtown.

By Stephanie Bartels

Freedom Over Texas Fourth of July fireworks display over downtown Houston July 4, 2018

Image: Donna Carson

After two years of reimagined celebrations, Shell Freedom Over Texas is returning to its full star-spangled glory with an in-person event featuring six hours of festivities along Allen Parkway. Last year, the virtual event included a special moment honoring frontline workers, and the traditional height of the fireworks was doubled to facilitate widespread viewing of the show. 

This year, the Fourth of July celebration returns at full capacity to Eleanor Tinsley and Sam Houston Parks on Buffalo Bayou, complete with live music and family-friendly activities. Kicking off the concert at the Shell Main Stage will be Step Rideau and the Zydeco Outlaws, followed by Walker County and rapper/singer Blanco Brown. Later, a performance by Sawyer Brown will open for headliner Clay Walker. The evening concludes with a grand-finale fireworks show. 

Festivities throughout the day include an All-American Kids Zone (a children’s entertainment area with a stage for performances), the Bud Light Seltzer Summer Sizzle, a Cool Zone with Houston professional sports teams, a Space City Experience, and a salute to all five branches of the military. 

“Shell Freedom Over Texas is one of my favorite signature events, and we are thrilled to announce the return of the popular family-friendly celebration,” said Mayor Sylvester Turner in a statement. “I invite everyone to come and enjoy the entertainment lineup, followed by the spectacular fireworks.”

If you wish to skip the crowds and prefer a virtual option, ABC13 will host a live broadcast from 7 to 10 p.m. and also a livestream on abc13.com. 

The fun happens Monday, July 4, 2022, from 4 to 10 p.m. at Eleanor Tinsley and Sam Houston Parks. Admission is $10 per person online and at the gates; children ages 5 and under are free. The event will donate a percentage of food and beverage sales to the Houston Food Bank. Those who wish to volunteer will receive an official event T-shirt, free parking, and complimentary food and drinks. 

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