July 4 at the National Archives Historical reenactors portraying Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Benjamin Franklin and Ned Hector will read the Declaration of Independence on the Constitution Avenue steps at 10 a.m. The outdoor event includes a presentation of colors by the Continental Color Guard, performances by the Fife and Drum Corps and four-time international whistling champion Christopher Ullman, and remarks by Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero, plus emcee Steve Scully from C-SPAN. Stories and craft activities continue indoors 11 a.m.-4 p.m., and more historical figures make appearances noon-2 p.m. National Archives, Constitution Avenue and Ninth Street NW. 202-357-5000. www.archives.gov. Free.
Palisades Parade and Picnic For a small-town vibe, the Palisades Citizens Association’s annual parade allows everyone to march. Make a float, decorate your bike or just walk. Participants line up at 10 a.m. on Whitehaven Parkway. The parade begins at 11 a.m., running down MacArthur Boulevard, left on Edmunds Place and left on Sherier Place, ending at the Palisades Rec Center with a picnic, music and moon bounces. 202-363-7441. www.palisadesdc.org. Free.
National Independence Day Parade Bands, floats, military units, inflatables, horses, celebrities and national dignitaries participate in the annual parade hosted by the National Park Service and Diversified Events. 11:45 a.m. Constitution Avenue from Seventh to 17th Street. www.july4thparade.com. Free.
A Capitol Fourth This year’s concert and fireworks, broadcast live on PBS, will be hosted by Tom Bergeron with performances by Frankie Valli, John Williams, Patti Labelle, Phillip Phillips, Jordin Sparks, Michael McDonald, Sara Evans, the Muppets, Kendall Schmidt, Kelli O’Hara, the National Symphony Orchestra led by conductor Jack Everly, the Choral Arts Society of Washington, the U.S. Army Band “Pershing’s Own,” the U.S. Army Herald Trumpets, the U.S. Army Presidential Salute Battery and the Joint Armed Forces Chorus. Attendees must pass through a metal detector. Gates open at 3 p.m., concert at 8 p.m. West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol, 100 Constitution Ave. NE. 202-226-8000. www.pbs.org/capitolfourth/
Francis Scott Key’s Star-Spangled Banner manuscript A short-term display featuring the 200-year-old original manuscript for “The Star Spangled Banner” along with the flag continues through Sunday. National Museum of American History, 14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW. 202-633-1000. www.americanhistory.si.edu. Free.