Red White & BOOM!

Red White & BOOM!

Festival season is in full swing and BOOM! is one that brings huge crowds to downtown Columbus for a night of music, food, activities and of course – fireworks. As one of the largest displays of Independence Day fireworks in the Midwest, the Scioto Riverfront provides one of the best views.  The event officially begins next Thursday, July 3 at noon. For more information and a full schedule of performances and activities, visit You won’t want to miss it!

WHAT: Red, White & Boom – the largest fireworks display in Ohio!

WHEN: Thursday, July 3 | Noon to 11 p.m.

WHERE: Downtown Columbus


The Scioto Mile Fountain will be turned off beginning Wednesday, July 2 at 6 p.m. and will be back on Friday, July 4 at 10 a.m.


  • Public set-up for Red, White & Boom may begin at 5 PM on July 2.
  • To keep your parks looking nice, we request that personal canopies, tarps and blankets not be set-up until July 3.
  • Due to riverfront construction space is limited. Be considerate of others.
  • Please mark your area with items that don’t present a danger to the public. STAKES AND POSTS ARE PROHIBITED as they pose a danger to playing children and can cause damage to irrigation systems.
  • Anything placed before 5 p.m. on July 2 will be collected and taken to Bicentennial Park, 233 Civic Center Dr.


  • Canoes, kayaks and legal vessels that can be carried will be allowed at the Downtown Lower Olentangy River Boat Launch, located west of Neil Avenue on Nationwide Boulevard. (The ramp has been permanently closed to trailered boats).
  • Power boats, canoes, kayaks may be launched at the Scioto Audubon Metro Park launch area west of Front Street on W. Whittier Street. Parking is on a first-come, first-served basis, with approximately 30 spaces available. (Franklin County Metro Parks will close gate when spaces are full).
  • Due to the ongoing construction of the Scioto Greenway project, boating will not be allowed in the Scioto River 100’ above the first railroad bridge south of the confluence of the Scioto and Olentangy Rivers and the first railroad bridge south of the Main Street bridge. Boats launching from the Downtown Lower Olentangy River launch area will be restricted to the areas north of the railroad bridge 100’above North Bank Park.
  • Boats launching from the Scioto Audubon Metro Park launch area will be permitted to travel north to the railroad bridge south of the Main Street bridge.
  • Boater Safety Inspections and Registration Checks will be occurring at the launch areas. Individuals without proper safety equipment, registrations or proper display of OH numbers will not be permitted to launch. Individuals launching before 2:00 p.m. will be checked by marine officers on the water.

Happy Independence Day everyone!

THIS FRIDAY (6/27) ǀ Kenya Safari Acrobats


In need of some fun and excitement to end your busy week? Look no further! The Columbus Recreation and Parks Department is delighted to present Kenya Safari Acrobats to the stage this Friday evening at 7:30 p.m.

From the heart of Africa, this dynamic dance troupe takes acrobatics to exhilarating extremes, providing a truly unique cultural experience you will not want to miss! As children growing up in an impoverished country, the members learned acrobatics on the beaches of Kenya as a means of escape. Their commitment and enthusiasm paid off as they are now artistic ambassadors for Kenya and travel the globe, entertaining and inspiring audiences of all types. The Kenya Safari Acrobats perform breathtaking contortions, hurl through hoops and perform gravity-defying human pyramids, all while clapping along to a Benga beat.

These gymnasts are crowd pleasers, without a doubt. Come watch them combine their artistry, humor, and playfulness as you enjoy a classic African blend of traditional art and circus skills. Join us this Friday night and allow these acrobats to leave you with an incredible sense of awe and amazement!

6:30 p.m. – Food and beverage sales begin
8:00 p.m. – Performance


THIS FRIDAY (6/20) ǀ Shemekia Copeland


It truly takes a special type of person to be able to sing the blues; one who has endured the personal strife in life and can translate their soul into a melodic outcry for change. Shemekia Copeland uncovered that vocal soul as her father, late blues guitarist Johnny Copeland, suffered health problems in her teenage years. However, still young in her thirties, Copeland has been a familiar face to those who follow the blues genre—already a two-time GRAMMY® nominee.

Growing up within the everyday sounds of city life in Harlem, Copeland has been fortunate enough to take her roots to the stage with artists like Buddy Guy, BB King, Mick Jagger and Eric Clapton. Her deep passion for singing and powerful voice have matched the largest stages across the globe, headlining the Chicago Blues Festival, opening for the Rolling Stones and performing for Illinois native President Barack Obama and the First Lady, where she was officially deemed “Queen of the Blues” by the State.

The evening will open with blues royalty, Teeny Tucker, daughter of Tommy Tucker (1964 classic “High-Heel Sneakers”). Tucker has become renowned for creating ‘crowd frenzy’ with her high-energy world class package on stage and has been invited to do so on bills with artists such as BB King, KoKo Taylor, Etta James, Buddy Guy, Robert Cray, Keb Mo, and many others. Having played major blues festivals all over the world, we are thrilled to host Shemekia Copeland and special guest Teeny Tucker at the Bicentennial Park Performing Arts Pavilion for a night of music, food, drinks and fun!

6:30 p.m. – Food and beverage sales begin
7:30 p.m. – Live music begins


THIS FRIDAY (6/13) ǀ The Navigators

The Navigators

The Columbus Recreation and Parks Department is thrilled to present the first free performance of the Rhythm on the River series!  What better way to do so than by featuring a Columbus-based band that plays a little bit of everything!

The Navigators will be performing at Bicentennial Park this Friday at 7:30p.m.  You can expect to hear vibrant horns, rich, multilayered vocals and covers of classic hits from Chicago, The Beatles and the Commodores.  This 13-piece band, comprised of Columbus executives and professionals, are passionate about serving the community and raising money for charity.  In this effort, they have helped raise over $200,000 to benefit local and national charities since their formation in 2003.  Their focus is on having fun so plan on joining us at Bicentennial Park this Friday!  Come hungry!  Donatos Pizza, Sunny Street Café wraps and beverages will be for sale beginning at 6:30p.m.  See you then for a fun-filled evening with The Navigators!

6:30 p.m. – Food and beverage sales begin
7:30 p.m. – The Navigators

Rhythm on the River is produced by the Columbus Recreation and Parks Department and made possible through the generous support of the Scioto Mile Endowment Fund: Columbus Downtown Development Corporation, ABC 6/ FOX 28, Rewind 103.5/104.3, Donatos, The Westin Columbus, WCBE 90.5 FM, Sunny Street Café and The Holiday Inn Downtown.