Ever wonder what an Independence Day weekend on the wild side of Washington looks like? Think watermelon dripping down your arm, bare feet in the soft green grass, and a breathtaking fireworks display reflected in Hood Canal.
Thunder on the Canal in Union, Washington
Alderbrook Resort & Spa’s annual Thunder on the Canal delivers all of the goods.
- What: Thunder on the Canal
- Where: Alderbrook Resort & Spa
- Cost: Complimentary to hotel guests, $5 for non-guests
This annual event happens in Alderbrook’s expansive backyard and has all the fixin’s of your favorite summer barbeque with a Pacific Northwest twist.
Make a day of it! The outdoor patio opens at noon with live ukulele music. The lawn games begin soon thereafter at noon. If you’re not staying over at the hotel, swing by for non-hotel event access at 2pm.
Starting at 3pm, enjoy smoky barbeque fare plus oysters harvested from the very canal you’re dipping your toes into. Indulge yourself with an outdoor spa treatment, or a little retail therapy at the gift shop, which will feature Thunder on the Canal t-shirts and other goodies.
Satiate a summertime thirst in the beer and cocktail garden, and strike up a conversation with upbeat live music wafting through the thick July air. Musical performances begin at 7:15. Party pants required. (Kidding)!
Feel like some competition? The annual oyster-eating competition always garners some hoots and hollers. This year it starts at 7pm. And plus, oysters are one of the world’s best sources of zinc, so you can get a head start on that impending weekend hangover.
As the sun slowly slinks below the horizon, the explosion of color illuminating the Olympic Mountains will turn into an eruption of fireworks launched from a vessel in the middle of Hood Canal.
Recline on the cool grass as a professional firework show dances above your head and lights up the dark waters of Hood Canal. If that’s not patriotic, we don’t know what is.
Want to fill up the rest of your weekend with wild side shenanigans? Get over to Tahuya a day early for Tahuya Fest.
- What: Tahuya Festival & Day Parade
- Where: Tahuya, Washington
- Cost: Free (bring cash for food/artisan crafts)
This annual event is just what you’d expect from a downhome summer festival: face painting, a main street parade, local vendors and crafts, a host of family fun, and a raffle.
We love celebrating the ol’ red, white, and blue and will be updating often leading up to these events. Keep up on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter for the latest in and around the Olympic National Park, and let us peek into your festivities with #explorehoodcanal #hoodcanal and #wildsideWA. Cheers!