Wawa Welcome America

Last updated
Wawa Welcome America
Wawa Welcome America.PNG
Country of origin United States
No. of episodes 25 (As of July 4,2017)
Original network NBC10
Original release July 4, 1993 (1993-07-04) – present
External links

Wawa Welcome America is an annual series of celebrations leading up to Independence Day, held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, currently sponsored by convenience store chain Wawa and currently airs on NBC10 & Telemundo62.

Independence Day (United States) federal holiday in the United States

Independence Day is a federal holiday in the United States commemorating the Declaration of Independence of the United States on July 4, 1776. The Continental Congress declared that the thirteen American colonies were no longer subject to the monarch of Britain and were now united, free, and independent states. The Congress had voted to declare independence two days earlier, on July 2, but it was not declared until July 4.

Philadelphia Largest city in Pennsylvania, United States

Philadelphia, known colloquially as Philly, is the largest city in the U.S. state and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and the sixth-most populous U.S. city, with a 2018 census-estimated population of 1,584,138. Since 1854, the city has been coterminous with Philadelphia County, the most populous county in Pennsylvania and the urban core of the eighth-largest U.S. metropolitan statistical area, with over 6 million residents as of 2017. Philadelphia is also the economic and cultural anchor of the greater Delaware Valley, located along the lower Delaware and Schuylkill Rivers, within the Northeast megalopolis. The Delaware Valley's population of 7.2 million ranks it as the eighth-largest combined statistical area in the United States.

Pennsylvania State of the United States of America

Pennsylvania, officially the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, is a state located in the northeastern, Great Lakes and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States. The Appalachian Mountains run through its middle. The Commonwealth is bordered by Delaware to the southeast, Maryland to the south, West Virginia to the southwest, Ohio to the west, Lake Erie and the Canadian province of Ontario to the northwest, New York to the north, and New Jersey to the east.


Philadelphia, America’s birthplace, hosts the nation’s largest, free, family-friendly Independence Day celebration from June 29 – July 4. The 6-day festival features multicultural and multigenerational events, including: free concerts; spectacular fireworks displays; block parties; a patriotic parade; and educational activities.

It was formerly known as the Sunoco Welcome America event.

Sunoco American petroleum and petrochemical manufacturer

Sunoco LP is an American master limited partnership organized in Delaware and headquartered in Dallas, Texas that is a wholesale distributor of motor fuels. It distributes fuel to 5,322 Sunoco-branded gas stations, almost all of which are owned and operated by third-parties. The partnership is controlled by Energy Transfer Partners.


Go 4th and Learn is an educational program to engage children and their parents with free fun events in the neighborhoods.

Philly @ the Movies shows favorite films throughout the City.

Free concerts are held throughout the holiday weekend, ending with the Wawa Welcome America! July 4 Concert on the Parkway.

Wawa Hoagie Day is an event held the week prior to July 4 where a 5-ton hoagie is created and distributed to the public on the Independence Visitor’s Center Lawn in honor of our military, fire and police.

The Philly Pops perform a free concert in front of Independence Hall on July 3.

The Philly Pops is an orchestra based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Founded by presenter and producer, Moe Septee, and conducted for 35 years by two time Grammy Award-winning pianist Peter Nero, Peter Nero and the Philly Pops is an entity. The Philly Pops plays orchestral versions of popular jazz, swing, Broadway songs and blues. Its music director is Michael Krajewski. On October 4, 1999, the Philly Pops was designated the official pops orchestra of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Historic Philadelphia District Block Party is a diverse block party filled with food trucks, craft vendors, historic re-enactments, performances and more on the streets surrounding Independence Mall on July 3rd prior to the Philly Pops performance in front of Independence Hall.

Wawa Hoagie Day

On Thursday, June 29 beginning at noon, spend your lunch break on Independence Mall with all of the freshly made hoagies you can imagine. Join the mayor and hoagie-lovers from around the region for Wawa Hoagie Day. Feast on 5 tons of hoagies on the lawn of the Independence Visitor Center and salute the nation’s military, police and fire departments during the delicious annual celebration. [1]

Philadelphia Orchestra Neighborhood Concert

The world-renowned orchestra presents a free neighborhood concert on the RiverStage at the Great Plaza, followed by a spectacular fireworks display.

Philadelphia at the Movies

When the sun goes down, the screens go up! Enjoy free, outdoor screenings of cinematic classics under the stars during Wawa Welcome America at locations around the city. [2] [3] [4] [5] [6]

The Pops on Independence Mall

July 3: The ever-energetic Philly Pops return once more to Independence Mall to celebrate America’s birthday in America’s birthplace. POPS! on Independence, a free concert at Independence Hall, is one of Philadelphia’s most popular Fourth of July traditions, and seating is first come, first served. Concertgoers are encouraged to bring blankets and lawn chairs. [7]

4th of July

4th of July Fireworks over the Philadelphia Museum oft of Philadelphia's annual "Welcome America" celebration. PMA-Fireworks.jpg
4th of July Fireworks over the Philadelphia Museum oft of Philadelphia's annual "Welcome America" celebration.

On July 4 itself, the Independence Hall celebration was first held, then the Independence Day parade, then the "Party on the Parkway" is held that lasts until a large, free concert that features headline acts gets underway in the early evening. That concert lasts until about 10–11 PM EDT, and then the grand finale of fireworks are held near the Philadelphia Museum of Art to cap off the Welcome America celebration.

Celebration of Freedom

Begin your 4 July celebration and pay tribute to the history of our great nation at Independence Hall with a patriotic morning full of celebration of music, speeches and a reading of excerpts from the Declaration of Independence.

Independence Day Parade

America’s Birthday continues in America’s birthplace with the annual Independence Day Parade through Historic Philadelphia. Participants from across the country march through the nation’s most historic mile. The old-time Fourth of July parade features floats, marching bands, military groups and more.

Party on the Parkway

Party on the Parkway: Music, dancing, cultural activities, arts and crafts and live entertainment make for an afternoon of family fun on the 4th. [8]

Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert & Fireworks

Every year a free outdoor concert is held on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in front of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The concert is followed by fireworks. The free live performance has been a Philadelphia tradition for more than two decades. [9] Past performers have included notable hometown acts and top selling artists. Starting in 2013, the concert was broadcast nationally on Vh1, in addition to local network broadcast by NBC10. [10]

2017 Mary J. Blige, Boyz II Men, Mandy Gonzalez, Tony DeSare, Luis Figueroa

2016 Leon Bridges along with Leslie Odom Jr., Yazz The Greatest, The O'Jays, and a Gamble and Huff tribute. [11]
2015 The Roots along with Jennifer Nettles, Miguel, MKTO and Zella Day.
2014 Pop stars Nicki Minaj, Ed Sheeran, Ariana Grande, Aloe Blacc, Jennifer Hudson, and The Voice finalist Vicci Martinez joined The Roots on stage. [12]
2013 The Roots and special guests included John Mayer, Ne-Yo, Jill Scott, and host comedian Kevin Hart.
2012 The Roots and special guests Darryl Hall, Queen Latifah, Common, Lauryn Hill, and Joe Jonas.
2011 The Roots and special guests Earth Wind & Fire, Michael McDonald, Estelle, Sara Bareilles, DJ Jazzy Jeff, Aaron Neville and Gerald Veasley. [13]
2010 The Roots and The Goo Goo Dolls
2009 Sheryl Crow and The Roots
2008 John Legend, an alumnus of Philadelphia-based University of Pennsylvania
2007 Hall & Oates
2006 Lionel Richie and Fantasia
2005 Elton John and Patti LaBelle
2004 The Isley Brothers
2003 Musiq and Peter Frampton
2002 Brian McKnight and The Baha Men
2001 Garth Brooks
2000 Earth, Wind & Fire
1999 Dionne Warwick
1998 Boyz II Men
1997 Ray Charles
1996 Patti Labelle
1995 The Beach Boys
1994 Smokey Robinson, Peter Nero, and The Philly Pops
1993 The Pointer Sisters and The Philly Pops

[9] [10] [14]

Parade festivities

Wawa Welcome America features thousands of festivities [15] like Wawa Hoagie Day, which thousands of people from around the world enjoy a footlong Wawa hoagie made by real Wawa workers. The parade also has music from many performers such as The Roots, who reside in Philadelphia. along with Earth, Wind and Fire, Michael McDonald, Estelle, Sara Bareilles, and Philly's own D.J. Jazzy Jeff.

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Wawa (company) American convenience store chain

Wawa, Inc. is an American chain of convenience stores and gas stations located along the East Coast of the United States, operating in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, Washington, D.C., and Florida. The company's corporate headquarters is located in the Wawa area of Chester Heights, Pennsylvania in Greater Philadelphia. As of 2008, Wawa was the largest convenience store chain in Greater Philadelphia, and it is also the third-largest retailer of food in Greater Philadelphia, after ACME Markets and ShopRite.

VH1 debuted the first annual VH1 Divas concert in 1998. VH1 Divas Live was created to support the channel's Save The Music Foundation and subsequent concerts in the series have also benefited that foundation. The VH1 Divas concerts aired annually from 1998 to 2004. After a five-year hiatus, the series returned in 2009 with a younger-skewed revamp. In 2010 the concert saluted the troops and in 2011 it celebrated soul music, doubling the previous year's ratings. The latest edition, which aired live from the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles on December 16, 2012, celebrated dance music and paid tribute to Whitney Houston and Donna Summer. The show was revived on December 5, 2016, at the Kings Theatre in Brooklyn, New York with a holiday theme and achieved its highest ratings in over a decade.

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  1. Jenkins, Kristina. "Our Guide To Wawa Welcome America! The Festivals, Concerts And Family-Friendly Fun Of Philadelphia's Fourth of July Celebrations". uwishunu. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  2. Smith, Eric. "Wawa Welcome America! Announces Details for Two Weeks of July 4th Celebrations". uwishunu. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  3. "6abc Action News for Disney Frozen at Wawa Welcome America in the City of Philadelphia". Chanel 6 ABC WPVI-TV. 2014-06-02.
  4. "Disney Big Hero 6 – Raising the MOVIE THEATER at Wawa Welcome America Philly @ the Movies". www.LaserLightShow.ORG. 2015-06-29.
  5. "Rocky 2015 at The Philadelphia Museum of Art Steps – Raising the Movie Theater at Wawa Welcome America Philly @ the Movies". www.LaserLightShow.ORG. 2015-07-01.
  6. "2015 Mayor Michael Nutter's Speech RE: Wawa Welcome America & Raising the Movie Theater at Philly @ the Movies". www.LaserLightShow.ORG. 2015-07-02.
  7. Stadd, Allison. "July 4th 2012 In Philadelphia: Wawa Welcome America Returns June 25 – July 4 With Questlove Back As Musical Director, Four Concerts, Four Outdoor Movie Screenings, Three Fireworks Shows And Two Weekends". uwishunu. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  8. Jenkins, Kristina. "July 4th In Philadelphia: Our Hour-By-Hour Guide To Wawa Welcome America Activities And Celebrations Throughout The Day". uwishunu. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  9. 1 2 Fiorillo, Victor. "The History of July 4th Parkway Concerts In Philadelphia". Philadelphia Magazine. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  10. 1 2 Black, Elizabeth. "VH1 And Palladia To Broadcast The Philly 4th Of July Jam With The Roots". VH1. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  11. Stamm, Dan. "Who's Playing Wawa Welcome America Festival on July 4th?". NBC Philadelphia. Retrieved May 31, 2017.
  12. Stadd, Allison. "Save The Date: Wawa Welcome America Returns This Summer With The Roots, Ed Sheeran, Nicki Minaj And Jennifer Hudson Headlining The Philly 4th of July Jam And Much More, June 28 – July 4". uwishunu. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  13. Gandolfo, Kathy. "Roots, Earth Wind and Fire to rock Welcome Americas". 6abc. Retrieved March 12, 2015.
  14. "Wawa Welcome America July 4th Concert – Welcome America 2017". Welcome America 2017. Retrieved 2017-07-05.
  15. Williams, Rick. "What to expect at Wawa Welcome America". News. 6abc. Retrieved June 23, 2011.