4th of July - Truckee Style!

4th of July - Truckee Style!

April 4, 2022




Fourth of July celebrations are arguably the best part of Summer! They involve fireworks, parades, hot dogs, ice cream, swimming, and picnics, so really, what’s not to love? Small town USA means charming traditions, friendly people, and a way to celebrate being part of this great community. From dawn to night, it’s a full day of fun. Get ready to celebrate Independence Day – Truckee style!

Pancake Breakfast – 7:00-10:00 am
Start your day by fueling up at the Annual 4th of July Pancake Breakfast put on by the Truckee Fire Protection District. Held in Station 92 (11473 Donner Pass Road next to Wild Cherries) from 7:00 to 10:00 am. The event is free (donations appreciated, but not required) and a great way to start your holiday. Who doesn’t love hot pancakes off the griddle with butter and maple syrup on a beautiful summer day? Sit side by side with friendly people laughing and joining in the camaraderie. Fire District logo merchandise is available for purchase.

Firecracker Mile Fun Run – 9:45 am
Get in a bit of cardio burst before chilling out for the parade and a sun-filled day of barbecues, beer, and beach by doing the Firecracker Mile Fun Run. This is a one-mile “gravity-fed” fun event for all ages and abilities. The race starts at 9:45 am just before the parade at US Bank on Donner Pass Road and finishes downtown at the train depot in the heart of all the crowds. This is definitely a family, kid-friendly, dog-friendly event. Run, jog, quick or casual walk with baby in stroller – all work! Runners are encouraged to wear festive attire and are cheered on by thousands of parade spectators. This is a fundraiser for the Auburn Ski Club. REGISTER ONLINE or go into Tahoe Mountain Sports in the Safeway Center. 

4th of July Parade – 10:00 am-noon
This year’s theme: 4th of July — A Community Tradition!
A quintessential small-town tradition, Truckee’s 4th of July parade is a must-attend event for many. Folding chairs are put out at people’s favorite spots at o-dark thirty that morning. The parade starts at 10:00 am in front of Wild Cherries and winds east with the last entry arriving downtown around noon. Booming music and announcers are located downtown and in front of Quality Automotive Service & Smog. The parade starts with the Tahoe-Truckee Cadet Squadron of the Civil Air Patrol’s presentation of the Colors. Then let the party begin with a parade of fire trucks sounding their horns, police cars and their sirens, big rig trucks, classic cars, horses, local nonprofits and organization floats, the Sierra Highlanders Pipe Band with their twirling drumsticks and bagpipes, and more. It’s an exhilarating morning shared by locals and visitors alike. The parade is put on by the Truckee Chamber of Commerce in partnership with the Town of Truckee, with logistical support from Big Blue Adventures. To register for the parade, CLICK HERE.

Tahoe Forest Health System; Rotary Club of Truckee; Truckee Tahoe Airport District; Martis Camp Club; The Tree House; Soroptimist International of Truckee Donner; Mountain Home Center; Auburn Ski Club; Elder Group Tahoe Real Estate; Mark Tanner Construction, Inc.; Truckee Tahoe Pet Lodge; Trinkie Watson; Alison Bermant, Attorney at Law; Cabona’s; Grizzly Menswear; Mountain Arts Collective; Pacific Crest Wealth Planner-John Manocchio; 101.5FM Truckee Tahoe Radio; Truckee Tahoe Media; Sierra Sun; Crux Events; Tahoe Mountain Sports.


4th of July Festivities and Fireworks at West End Beach – 1:30-10:30 pm
Enjoy a full day 4th of July party at West End Beach, with fireworks at dusk. Spend the day with family, friends and the Truckee community with a day at the beach, listen and dance to music, play games, eat BBQ, and watch the fireworks. Gates to the beach open at 9:00 am, games and bands start at 1:30 pm, and fireworks are at 9:30 pm. Cost is $10 in advance only from the Truckee Donner Recreation and Park District (no tickets at the gate on July 4th). The West End Beach event is for Truckee residents and homeowners and you must show some proof to purchase tickets. Tickets are limited to 7 tickets per adult in the household. Donner Lake gets super busy on this day – the 37 public piers fill up really early as do the shoreline beaches. People watch the fireworks from their boats or kayaks – being sure to have the proper lighting and safety gear. For fewer crowds head up Old Highway 40 toward Sugar Bowl and find a big granite rock to throw a blanket on and take in the fireworks over the lake. When fireworks are over, go westbound on Old Hwy 50 toward Soda Springs and take eastbound I-80 back to Truckee to avoid extended delays. Or head up to the Glacier Trail in Tahoe Donner for a short walk to a good vantage point – warm jackets and flashlights are a must.

A Crowd Favorite: The Truckee River Drill Team
The Truckee River Drill Team has been a crowd favorite in Truckee’s 4th of July Parade for many, many years. They have more trophies than they know what to do with! No matter how many times people have seen them, they look forward to it every year and ALWAYS laugh, smile and love watching them!! Their irreverent style, made-up “precision” moves, hodgepodge “uniforms” of Hawaiian boots, zinc oxide and Sorel boots is classic Truckee. Bill Palmer was the creative genius and driving force behind this long-time Truckee tradition. Back in 1986 Bill owned Sun ‘n Snow Sports (where The Backcountry is today) and with plenty of skis sitting in storage, the idea came to round up some Rotarians and create a “drill team” parade entry. It is a throwback and homage to Truckee’s early days. Bill’s legacy continues today and has been creating memories for parade attendees for over 35 years.

In 2005, the Truckee River Drill Team “took their show on the road” bringing the Truckee spirit to Chicago, Illinois marching in their “signature style” at the Rotary International Conference parade. “Most of the Truckee River Drill Team and all the equipment went with the group on Amtrak from Truckee to Chicago. We were one of about 100 floats/teams in the parade down the Miracle Mile celebrating the 100th anniversary of Rotary. There were about 20 Rotarians in the group and it was the experience of a lifetime!!” – Proud Rotarian