Photo courtesy of[/caption] With the Fourth of July quickly approaching, it's time to plan your Independence Day. Do you want to spend your day at ice cream socials, running a race, watching a parade or enjoying live music while picnicking on a beautiful lawn? In Virginia Beach and Chesapeake, you can do it all before catching fireworks in various locations! Virginia Beach On Wednesday, July 4, start the day early at the 34th Annual Independence Day 5K. Beginning at 6:30 a.m. at 4441 South Boulevard, racers and walkers alike are encouraged to take place in this event that helps benefit the community. At 6:30 p.m., the oceanfront Star and Stripes Explosion festivity begins, with live bands playing to tens of thousands of people. The music and the fireworks are free, and parking will be readily available at three different locations – 300 19th St., 336 15th St. and 209 30th St. Another popular annual celebration is the Virginia Beach Fireworks explosive light show along the boardwalk. This spectacular show begins at 9:30 p.m. and is a weekly display all summer long. Plus, it’s free to the public! Chesapeake On Tuesday, July 3, Celebrate Freedom  makes it way to Chesapeake City Park. This free event features a concert, plenty of children’s activities and family entertainment, and of course, an awesome fireworks display that begins at approximately 9:15 p.m. On July 4, Lakeside Park will host the 38th Annual South Norfolk Parade & Picnic in the Park beginning at 10 a.m. The event features a parade, entertainment, food, games, paddleboat rides, children's crafts and more family fun. The best part? The event is free to the public! In the heat of summer, there's nothing like settling down on a picnic blanket and watching fireworks light up the night sky. These events, and many others, take place near our new home communities in Virginia Beach and Chesapeake. For more information on our homes at Spence Crossing at Princess Anne in Virginia Beach and Hickory Manor at Edinburgh in Chesapeake, check out our website at