Downtown preps for the Fourth


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – We're just one day away from the Fourth of July, but in Jacksonville, the festivities start Wednesday.

Wednesday night you're invited to visit Art Walk and enjoy live music at The Landing. Then Thursday, thousands of people are expected to celebrate our country's independence there.

Gates will be put up at the landing around the front and side entrances. Admission is free, but you'll have to show ID. You have to be 21 or older to enter and minors must be with a guardian.

People at The Landing are preparing for the big Fourth of July event, pressure washing the courtyard and hanging up banners.

"Starting Wednesday we have our Art Walk which is the monthly event with downtown vision, also have a live band at 8 p.m. lasting through the evening. Thursday we paired up with the city and Wal-Mart Neighborhood Markets and have live music from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., fireworks and another band coming on afterwards at 9:30 p.m.," said Samantha Collins with The Landing.

This is the first year the landing and the city are using Hogan Street for festivities on the fourth. It will be closed off from Water Street to the St. Johns River, with family activities like eating competitions, a bounce house and games.

Other street closures from 7 a.m. Thursday to 2 a.m. Friday include Independent Drive from Hogan Street east to Laura Street and Coastline Drive from The Landing to Newnan Street.

The Main Street and Acosta Bridges will be closed during the fireworks show and will reopen right after. The Fireworks Spectacular is scheduled to begin at 9:45 p.m.

"There will be a barge in front of the landing and in front of the Hyatt so anywhere on the River Walk is going to be your best bet also if you can get to a restaurant in time, enjoy dinner and then you could watch it on the patio as well," said Collins.

With a lot of people, a lot of security precautions have to be taken. The most important for you to know, you have to be 21 or older to get into the landing.. juveniles are allowed in if accompanied by a legal guardian and must stay with that adult while on property.

No coolers, chairs or bags are allowed into The Landing, but small purses are okay.

The Marine Taxi and Skyway are open to shuttle you to The Landing. Parking in city lots and garages are also available.

Boat docking is available on the north, southbank and metropolitan, but there are certain places you cannot anchor.