Have a question? We can help!

Each year we field literally thousands of questions concerning Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival events. And that’s great. But for those times when we aren’t available to talk with you directly, here are answers to some of the questions we receive most often.

If your question is not addressed here, please call the Festival office at 319-365-8313 during business Hours: Monday – Friday, 9:00 a.m. – 3 p.m. Extended hours during peak season.


What are the dates of the Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival?

The Freedom Festival Produced Events run for three weeks beginning on Flag Day (June 14th). The festival culminates with the 4th of July traditions like the Pancake Breakfast, Car Show, Concert at the McGrath Amphitheatre, ended with the Celebration of Freedom Fireworks celebration.

Where can I pick up the Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival Schedule of Events?

2023 Event Guides are available at all area Cedar Rapids/Marion Hy-Vee stores. We also have Event Guides available for pick up at the Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival Office and all produced events. BUT we encourage you to get the most up to date Freedom Festival Schedule of events online at: or download the new Freedom Festival APP!


Where can I purchase Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival Button & Coupon Book?

You can purchase a Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival Button at the following locations:

With each button purchase, you receive a Hy-Vee Coupon Book with over $30 in redeemable coupons at Hy-Vee Food, Drug, and Fast & Fresh stores in Cedar Rapids / Marion. Make sure to redeem the $10 off (a purchase of $100 or more) at Hy-Vee –making the button basically FREE! All coupons expire July 15th, 2023!

How much do Freedom Festival buttons cost this year?


Just think–your one time purchase of a Freedom Festival button gets you into 3 weeks of programming! Events like: Balloon Glow, Rock N Bowl, DockDogs, Movie at the Ballpark, Music at the Museum, discount for your Pancake Breakfast, Concert at the Amphitheatre, and the best seats for the Celebration of Freedom Fireworks!

RETURNING in 2023!! The Gold Button Promo! FORTY Gold Buttons are up for grabs this summer! All 40 have been distributed to all button distribution locations! If you are lucky enough to find a gold button, you will win a $100 Hy-Vee gift card! Take your gold button to the Freedom Festival office to redeem your prize!

AND we encourage you to wear your Freedom Festival button proudly this summer! Additional benefits of owning that 2023 button will be announced soon!

As an added bonus, courtesy of Stone Brook Homes, register to win a $500 Hy-Vee gift card and other prizes throughout the festival by registering your email at

Your investment in the Festival is gratefully acknowledged and sincerely appreciated by the entire Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival, Inc. organization.

Do children need a button?

Children ages 5 and under do not require a button at any buttoned events (see list of buttoned events here!

Will you have 2023 Freedom Festival T-shirts available for purchase?

Yes! Special thanks goes to Ironside Apparel & Promotions, Inc. Shirts will be red and feature our  custom 2023 design. Pricing is $15 for sizes S-XL and $20 for sizes 2XL-5XL. To purchase, head to the Freedom Festival office (limited sizing will be available, and will be first-come, first-score).

Tell me about the 40th Anniversary Commemorative Coin?

The Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival is celebrating 40 years in 2023! To mark the occasion, we will be producing a 40th Anniversary Commemorative coin. 


Coins will be sold for $40 each and will include a 2023 Freedom Festival button (admission into 3-weeks of programming)! A limited number of coins will be printed (only 100) and are on sale now.  Once they are gone, they are gone! 

Special thanks to our Challenge Coin sponsor: Crystal Group, Inc.


Where are the Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival fireworks?

We are excited to share that Celebration of Freedom Fireworks will return to downtown Cedar Rapids! BUT!!!! Due to So. Much. Construction, the footprint (including launch site) will be extremely different! Where you sat years past, will probably not be an option this year.

The firework launch site will be downtown Cedar Rapids on the 2nd Ave bridge. Seating will NOT be allowed on the 1st/1st project, within construction zones, on the island, or 1st Ave bridge (no parking and traffic MUST keep moving!)

Green State Credit Union and Terry Durin Company are the gracious sponsors this year for Iowa’s largest fireworks display. Special Effect’s sponsor is IBEW 405 / FUSE. Kid’s Zone sponsor is once again Surgery Center of Cedar Rapids, Atlantic Coca Cola Bottling Company, and Terry Durin Company.

Returning in 2023 will be FREE kid’s activity bags for the first 500 kids (12 and under) on the 3rd Ave bridge and the McGrath Amphitheatre beginning when gates open at 5 PM.

Doors at 5 PM. NO EARLY ENTRY!
(this includes no saving seating earlier in the day. All tarps, tents, or seats set-up inside the venue early will be removed.)
Security will be on site to monitor and bag check once doors open at 5 PM.


Does the Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival allow alcoholic beverages within its venues?

The Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival allows alcoholic beverages ONLY AT SPECIFIC EVENTS (listed below).


The Freedom Festival permits alcohol to be brought in to some events and the 4th of July Fireworks. Alcohol will be permitted to be carried in to these select events, however NO GLASS and SOFT SIDED COOLERS ONLY! – for safety concerns. All bags will be checked for compliance.

Public intoxication will not be tolerated at any Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival venue, and individuals found to be intoxicated will be asked to leave or escorted from the venue by area law enforcement personnel.


Does the Freedom Festival permit carrying in food or beverages for special diets or infant/toddler needs?

Absolutely! The Freedom Festival supports our loyal food vendors, but we understand that infants and toddlers have their own special formula needs or eating preferences. We are also very mindful that a number of Festival patrons have various medical conditions that dictate particular dietary items and schedules. As you enter a particular venue, if Staff or Volunteers ask you about your carry-in food items, please indicate that they are special medical dietary items. There is no need to reveal the nature of the medical condition. NO GLASS and SOFT SIDED COOLERS ONLY!

What about coolers on the 3rd Avenue Bridge / 1st Street SW?

Coolers will be allowed to be carried into the venue as long as they do not contain glass and they are SOFT SIDED COOLERS ONLY! – for security and safety purposes. All bags will be checked for compliance.


Who will be the Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival musical entertainment?

The Freedom Festival always features an excellent line-up including military and regional bands. These groups vary from year to year. Please refer to the Calendar of Events for the year’s musical talent. Most of these concerts are FREE to the public (with a Freedom Festival button)


What can you tell me about the Freedom Festival Parade?

The Freedom Festival Parade is generally held on the LAST Saturday morning of June at 10 AM. This year it is on June 24th. Parade routes may vary, so please refer to the Calendar of Events. Entry forms are available on this website during registration times and can be emailed by Freedom Festival staff. Please email for questions or concerns.

Downtown businesses that are within the area of closures will be notified in advance via postcard. We apologize for this small window of disruption, but we are excited to gather and celebrate this amazing community together on June 24th!


Where can I park for Freedom Festival events?

The Freedom Festival prides itself in offering events all throughout the corridor at different communities and venues. Parking varies depending on the event and venue. Handicapped parking will be designated near the entrances when available.

There will be shuttles offered for the 2023 Balloon Glow event at Jones Park. Due to limited parking around Jones Park, we encourage you to park and ride our free shuttles. Shuttle pick-up/drop-off will be at Kirkwood Continuing Education Training Center (101 50th Ave SW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52404) Typically for our larger events, we will have golf carts available to help transport individuals to and front the parking areas.


When preparing to attend a Freedom Festival event, what items are prohibited?

We ask all attendees arrive early and travel light, as you may be subject to search, which includes bag check and/or hand wands upon entry. 

  • Drugs, illegal substances or any paraphernalia associated with drug use
  • Electronic cigarettes / vape pens 
  • Laser pens/pointers of any type
  • Noisemakers such as air horns
  • Pepper spray/Mace
  • Weapons of any type, including chains, knives, firearms and spiked jewelry (including permit to carry)
  • Any other item deemed unacceptable by event management

If an item is revealed during a search, owner may dispose of the item or they may return the item to their vehicle. The Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival does not safeguard any personal belongings or items of any type.


Are pets allowed on Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival venues?

ONLY at the Jump for Freedom DockDogs event and the Freedom Festival Parade / Imagination Square / VOLTA. Otherwise pets are NOT permitted on any Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival venue. Events are often crowded and some pets do not respond well to the added stress of crowded venues and what is typically a very hot time of year. Clearly labeled service dogs are excluded from this rule.

Are there regulations pertaining to pets in Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival parades and shows?

Yes. At a very minimum all pets must be up-to-date on their rabies vaccinations, and must wear a collar with the appropriate tag. In addition, the City of Cedar Rapids Code pertaining to animal treatment will apply in all cases. City of Cedar Rapids policies and procedures pertaining to this city code are posted on this website when they are available. 

Can "personal fireworks" be brought onto Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival venues?

Personal fireworks – including sparklers and snakes – are NOT permitted inside ANY venue or produced Freedom Festival event. Festival patrons are strongly encouraged not to bring personal fireworks of any form to help ensure the safety of everyone attending the Festival.

Patron safety is a primary concern for the Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival. Patrons violating this policy will be asked to cease using the fireworks, or if necessary, will be asked to leave or be escorted from the venue by law enforcement or Cedar Rapids Fire Department personnel.


Will there be public restroom facilities on the venues?

Public portable restroom facilities, including handicap-accessible units, are located at all Freedom Festival-produced events. These restrooms are strategically located within the venues to provide convenient access to event patrons, while maintaining a discrete distance from event viewing and dining areas.

Within some venues the Freedom Festival is required as part of our contract with stage management and musical personnel to provide private access restroom facilities near the stage. Although these restrooms are not available to the public, other public restroom facilities are always located nearby.

Special thanks goes out to Mercy Medical Center for helping to provide Handwashing stations at select events. And LRS Portables for exclusively providing portable restroom facilites during our 2023 Celebration.


What will happen to all of the trash from the festival?

The Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival invites all patrons to be mindful to the environment and place all trash in the appropriate bins at each of our venues. We have staff and volunteers dedicated to make sure there are plenty of bins set strategically throughout the entertainment area, so we hope you’ll join us in keeping our venues clean! 


How can I or my group volunteer with the Freedom Festival?

YES!! We are excited for the return of the Win-Win-Win Program! Thanks to generous sponsorship by Alliant Energy and Toyota Financial Services we “pay” our volunteers! If you are interested in volunteering during the Festival, please CLICK HERE to register online. For each 4-hour shift you work, you can designate a non-profit organization to receive $25 per shift worked. A great way to funnel thousands of dollars into the community for good!


Where will event cancellation information be posted?

The Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival holds safety as a top priority. While we wish that all events can go on without weather issues, we are realistic and know that weather can and does impact our outdoor events. Many of our events are held rain or shine.

The exception is severe weather. We work extremely closely with our weather professionals and as soon as we make a call to the status of an event, we will notify all local and area media, but we cannot guarantee that media sources will have the time or ability to relay this information quickly.

Cancellation information will also be available on the official Cedar Rapids Freedom Festival website, Facebook, Instagram, and Freedom Festival App.

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