This Fourth of July weekend, the city of Pittsburgh will celebrate summer, water, and speed at the Three Rivers Regatta! The three-day festival, which runs from Saturday, July 2nd through Monday, July 4th, 2011, is free, and features lots of family-friendly events –including a giant sand sculpture, acrobatic performances, boat races, and even dog frisbee. These are just a few great activities that the family is sure to enjoy!

“Sandsational” Sand Sculpture

Point State Park
Ongoing, Sat-Mon

Anyone who has ever enjoyed building a sandcastle on a family trip to the beach is in for a “Sandsational” treat at the Regatta this year in the largest sand sculpture ever constructed in Pennsylvania! Built by the current World Champion Sand Sculptor, Thomas Koet, and his assistants, the sculpture will stand about 15 feet tall, 30 feet wide, and 20 feet deep. Koet has been working for two weeks to build his latest creation. Besides the sculpture, there will be even more sand–a sort of mini-beach–to walk along at the walkway at the Point near the steps facing the Allegheny River.

Mr. Rooter “Calling All Kids” Zone

Point State Park
Noon to 9 pm, Sat-Mon

What day of family fun is complete without some activities specifically with the little ones in mind? All day long, all three days, kids can get their faces painted and watch with wide-eyed wonder as artists work their magic with balloons and other inflatables at the “Calling All Kids” zone!

Circus Orange

Point State Park, Main Stage
8:45 pm start, all three days

Circus Orange is sure to amaze young and old as acrobats, dancers, and aerial performers along with pyrotechnic special effects. For other tricks, be sure to check out the OneUp “Skateboard” Team or the “Over the Mountain” Bike Stunt shows, each going on in Point State Park at various times all three days.

Frisbee Dog Show

Point State Park
Saturday, July 2; 4:30 pm

The only thing better than watching people catch Frisbees, is watching dogs catch Frisbees. Am I right? And if dogs and Frisbees don’t catch your interest, there’ll be a variety of dance teams performing at the Point State Park Main Stage before, during, and after the Frisbee Dog Show.

“Anything That Floats” Race

Allegheny River
Sunday, July 3; Noon start

Always a favorite, the “Anything That Floats” Race celebrates the can-do spirit of those of us who are not professional boat-builders. I’ll say.

“Cadence on the River” Pittsburgh Dragon Boat Races

Allegheny River
Monday, July 4; 11 am start

“Cadence on the River” Pittsburgh Dragon Boat Races is sure to be another family-favorite. The 500 meter race features 44-foot boats adorned with cool dragon heads and powered by human muscle. Later in the day, check out the F-2 Powerboat Superleague North American Championships, with time trials starting at 2 pm, qualifiers at 4:30 pm, and finals at 7 pm.

There are lots of other events, including sky-divers, additional boat races, and concerts along the North Shore. Visit for the full schedule!