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Hot dog contests and more on the Fourth of July

Arianna Auber
Scholz Garten hosts a Backyard BBQ on the Fourth of July with cold beers and more. [Contributed by Scholz]


Domo Alley-Gato's Ban Ban Dog Eating Contest. Find out if you have what it takes to reign as the top cat during Domo Alley-Gato's Fourth of July event. The Ban Ban Dog is a Tatsu-Ya take on the hot dog, made with a panko brioche bun stuffed with curry chili, topped with teriyaki, honey aioli and cabbage. The contestant to finish five ban ban dogs and five pickle spears in the least amount of time will earn a place on the wall of fame, bragging rights and a gift card valid for use at all Tatsu-Ya restaurants. 6 to 9 p.m. July 4. $20 to participate. 1600 E. Sixth St.

Scholz Garten's Backyard BBQ. The longest-running biergarten in America celebrates Independence Day with a casual barbecue before you head south of Lady Bird Lake for the big fireworks display. The event will feature music by DJ Giant Hornets from Japan spinning from 2 to 6 p.m. Scholz will have hot dogs, barbecue, burgers, beer specials, a snow cone machine, biergarten games and, to top it off, free popsicles. And did we mention Scholz is dog-friendly, too? 11 a.m. July 4. Free. 1607 San Jacinto Blvd. 512-474-1958,

Leander Liberty Fest. The freedom to have a good time will be on full display at Leander’s largest annual event of the year. There will be food including Smokey Mo’s BBQ, children’s activities, and music from Jason Boland & the Stragglers and headliner Mike Ryan. Scratch that — the spectacular fireworks display is going to be the headliner, of course. These will go off starting at 9:25 p.m. Head to 449 San Gabriel Campus Drive for the fun. 5 p.m. doors July 4. Free.

Gardening calendar

Guided Garden Tour. Tour the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center’s gardens and trails with a knowledgeable volunteer docent, learning about native plants and the history and architecture of the center. Each docent brings their own special knowledge and interests to the tour, and sites change throughout the seasons. 10 to 11 a.m. July 4 and additional dates. $6-$12. 4801 La Crosse Ave. 512-232-0100,

Dog Day at Zilker Botanical Garden. Bring your furry friends to this doggone good time. Have lunch at the Wunder Weiner Food Truck; then, meet the Bark Rangers to learn about dog safety and how it correlates with caring for the environment. RUSH Flyball Club, Emancipet, and Leave No Trace will also be there to answer any questions you have about their organizations. And did you want a new best bud courtesy of Austin Pets Alive? Foster dogs will be waiting to go on walks or just enjoy some scratches. 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. July 6. $1-$3. 2220 Barton Springs Road.