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Independence Day

kids participate in sack race at independence day event


Wednesday, July 4
9:00 am - 4:00 pm


Living History Farms
11121 Hickman Rd
Urbandale, IA 50322 United States
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Open 9am-4pm, with games beginning at 11am.

Enjoy an old-fashioned fourth with an iconic, historic Independence Day celebration in the town of Walnut Hill. 1876 marks the first centennial of the United States, and Living History Farms’ Independence Day activities truly show what this day meant to those in the 19th century – a day of family fun. Families can take part in pie eating contests, foot races, spelling bees, the town parade, watermelon seed spitting contests, and more! To fit everything in, be sure to arrive early to tour our historic farms, enjoy the town activities, and still have time to catch the Walnut Hill Bluestockings baseball game at 2:30pm.

Young Patriots Club will perform a flag raising ceremony at 11am.


Catered Lunch – Hy-Vee

Available for purchase from 11am-2pm at the Picnic Shelter.
Cash only at Picnic Shelter, Credit cards accepted at Admissions & Flynn Cafe

  • Meal Deal $8: burger, brat, or pulled pork sandwich, chips, cookie, and soda or bottled water (Vegetarian burger option available)
  • Mini Meal Deal $6: hot dog, chips, cookie, and juice box or bottled water


Schedule of Activities

11am-4pm Ongoing Games & Contests

  • Water Games and Footraces – North of Flynn Barn
  • Penny Scramble – West side of General Store
  • Pie Eating Contest (provided by Hy-Vee) – Every 15 minutes in the Flynn Barn
  • Stilts, Hoops, ‘n’ Sticks – Gazebo Lawn
  • Watermelon Seed Spitting Contest – Gazebo Lawn

11:00am Flag Raising Ceremony – Schoolhouse, Young Patriots Club

11:00am Spelling Bee – Schoolhouse

11:15am Medicine Show – Behind Flynn MansionWitness the pageantry of an 1875 patent medicine show as Professor I.M. Savage promotes “Swamp Root Tonic.”

12:15pm Patriotic Sing-along and Declaration of Independence reading – Church – Walnut Hill Drama Volunteers

1:00pm Spelling Bee – Schoolhouse

1:30pm Medicine Show – Behind Flynn Mansion

2:00pm Patriotic Procession – Gazebo to Baseball Field
Children can ride the hayrack representing the 37 states recognized in 1875. Children who want to participate in the procession should meet at the Cabinetmaker at 1:45pm.

Some sites and games in town will close during the procession. The following buildings are air conditioned: Flynn Mansion, Church, and Wallace Exhibit Center.

2:00pm Last tractor cart to visit ALL west side farms (1700, 1850, 1900)

2:30pm Historic Baseball – Baseball Field
Cheer on the Walnut Hill Bluestockings as they play using 1875 rules.

3:00pm Last tractor cart to visit the 1900 Farm

4:00pm Museum Closes


Plan your visit


Wells FargoAtlantic Coca Cola Bottling Company
Presenting Sponsor: Wells Fargo
Cultivating Sponsor: Atlantic Coca Cola Bottling Company
Contributing Sponsors: Casey’s General Store, Veridian Credit Union
Event Partners: Hy-Vee, The Outside Scoop