Welcome America, Inc., organizers of Philadelphia’s annual multi-day Independence Day celebration, today announced that Grammy®-winning artist Pitbull will headline the Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert for the first time.
Philadelphia’s July 4th concert—produced by Live Nation Philadelphia—is just one of the 50 free events planned for the 2018 Wawa Welcome America seven-day festival, happening Thursday, June 28 through Wednesday, July 4. Grammy-winning artist Heather Headley will also star in the Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert with The Philly POPS® BIG Band.
For 26 years, Welcome America, Inc. has produced the annual Wawa Welcome America multi-day festival celebrating American history, education and Philadelphia. Additional entertainment, festival information and details about dozens of free events for 2018 will be announced in late May. Visit welcomeamerica.com to learn more, and join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Free and open to the public, the Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert and Fireworks happens Wednesday, July 4th at 7 p.m. on the iconic Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia.
To take in all the patriotic fun, locals and visitors are encouraged to spend a night or two in the city. The best way to do that is to book the perks-packed Visit Philly Overnight Hotel Package, which always comes with the freedom to park free of charge. It’s available at visitphilly.com/overnight.
NBC10 will broadcast the Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert and Fireworks live in its entirety in primetime from 7 to 10 p.m.
Wawa Welcome America is presented by the City of Philadelphia, title partner Wawa, Inc., Comcast NBCUniversal with NBC10 and Telemundo62 as the local broadcast partners, VISIT PHILADELPHIA, Live Nation and Philadelphia International Airport. Information on the other 49 free events planned for the festival will be announced in May.
“The Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert continues to grow into a fantastic entertainment experience from year to year. I’m excited to welcome superstar Pitbull to our great city, as well as the other renowned artists, and I am excited to host such a diverse and appealing line-up for the free concert.” – Mayor Jim Kenney
“This year will really be a ‘Party on the Parkway’ with Pitbull’s music and positive energy. His inspirational story, positive message and worldwide appeal make him an ideal headliner for Wawa Welcome America’s July 4th Concert. His music brings all of us together.” – Welcome America, Inc. President & CEO Jeff Guaracino
From Mr. 305 to Mr. Worldwide, Armando Christian Perez, aka Pitbull, rose from the streets of Miami to exemplify the American Dream and achieve international success. Born to Cuban-American expatriates, Pitbull is from Miami lives by the motto “turn a negative into a positive,” and this mindset has instilled in him a tenacity that fuels his drive for success. Initially inspired to pursue his music dream by one of his high school teachers, Pitbull also understands the impact that education can make in one’s life.
The Philly POPS® BIG Band:
The Philly POPS® BIG Band returns to the Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert. They will be joined by Heather Headley—a Tony Award- and Grammy Award-winning R&B, gospel and Broadway singer—as well as R&B singers Tiffany Jones, Alita Moses and DeShana Wooden.
Headley is the original Nala from The Lion King on Broadway, the Tony-winning star of Aida and the Laurence Olivier Award nominee for her star turn in The Bodyguard musical. She recently toured with Andrea Bocelli and performed locally last December at the Wells Fargo Center. Headley will also perform on Tuesday, July 3 at the POPS on Independence concert. Her July 3 and July 4 performances will preview a one-night-only show at The Kimmel Center on October 12: The Philly POPS presents Heather Headley’s Broadway My Way.
The July 4th Concert will end with Philly’s largest Wawa Welcome America fireworks show in more than a decade. Produced by Pyrotecnico and Comcast, the show will feature new special effects and a soundtrack dedicated to love.
Broadcast and Streaming:
NBC10 will broadcast the Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert and Fireworks live during primetime in its entirety from 7 to 10 p.m. on Tuesday, July 4. NBC10’s coverage of the concert will be simulcast on Cozi TV and TCN, as well as in Spanish on TeleXitos from 7 to 10 p.m. The free concert will also be live streamed on nbcphiladelphia.com and telemundo62.com and can be viewed on any screen—TV, smartphone or iPad or tablet. Presenting media partner Comcast NBCUniversal will provide exclusive service ranging from broadcast to communications.
About Welcome America, Inc.
Welcome America, Inc. is a 501c3, non-profit organization in public-private partnership with the City of Philadelphia. Welcome America, Inc.’s mission is to promote American history, education and Philadelphia. The organization seeks to enhance the resident and visitor experience through citywide events that provide an economic boost to the local economy. Moving forward, Welcome America, Inc. may produce and assist in the growth of select city events year-round.
Live Nation Entertainment is the world’s leading live entertainment company comprised of global market leaders: Ticketmaster.com, Live Nation Concerts, Artist Nation Management and Live Nation Media/Sponsorship. For additional information, visit livenation.com/investors.
About The Philly POPS
The Philly POPS, the largest standalone pops orchestra in the United States, delights audiences with the inspired performance of American popular music. The POPS celebrates this distinctive musical heritage through an expanding repertoire of innovative concert presentations and a robust set of educational and engagement initiatives.
Now in its 40th season, the POPS serves an annual audience of over 150,000. Music Director Michael Krajewski and the 65-piece orchestra perform songs from American traditions of music up through today’s chart toppers. The Philly POPS BIG Band, an 18-to-20-piece ensemble performing a rock and rhythm and blues repertoire, premiered in 2017 to enthusiastic response at the July 4 Welcome America Concert on the Parkway.
Outside the concert hall, Salute Series performances—including POPS on Independence on July 3 and the I’ll Be Home for Christmas: A Salute to the Military and First Responders concert—celebrate the American tradition of service around important national holidays; POPS in Schools enhances music education for Philadelphia School District students; and POPS Outside brings POPS music to local communities.