The Best Ways to Watch Fireworks on the 4th of July

With cities reopening across the country, we have seen the return of large gatherings including live concerts, festivals, and major sporting events. With that, also comes the return of national holiday traditions including parades and fireworks!

Now I know there are probably some people hoping to avoid this year’s fireworks after living through that period of the pandemic where we heard the never-ending sounds of obscure booming and popping from some amateur pyrotechnics, but you have to admit that there is something nostalgic and exciting about watching a beautiful (professionally-curated) fireworks display.

This is even more true during the 4th of July celebrations, where we see the biggest and brightest fireworks light up the skies and stages across the country. Whether you plan on joining the crowds or just want to catch the light show from the comfort of your own home, here are the best ways to enjoy this year’s fireworks:

The City of Brotherly Love- In Philadelphia, duh! Philly is not only the home to the creation and signing of the Declaration of Independence, it is also one of the most historic places to celebrate the Fourth of July and catch the best fireworks. Philly’s annual Wawa Welcome America festival is the city’s official Independence Day fest, which, for the first time ever, includes events that commemorate both Juneteenth and the Fourth of July holidays which together provide a more accurate depiction of our country’s history, highlighting the nation’s founding in 1776 to the end of slavery in 1865.

Some events during the festival include free admission to museums and attractions in the city; hoagie giveaways from Wawa; musical concerts, waterfront performances by the Philadelphia Orchestra, and more.

The festival ends with a huge firework show above the Philadelphia Museum of Art on the 4th of July at 9:30 pm!

You watch the show on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway with the rest of the spectators or you can grab a few lawn chairs and blankets to relax on Kelly Drive or Lemon Hill to watch away from the crowds.


macys fireworks
Photo Courtesy: Macy’s Fireworks NBC

Macy’s 4th of July (NYC)- New York City puts on the largest Fourth of July celebration in the country! Their “45th Annual Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks” is expected to launch more than 65,000 artillery shells and effects from five barges on the East River near Midtown. Spectators will also get to enjoy music by The United States Army Field Band & Soldiers’ Chorus, Broadway Inspirational Voices, and musician Tori Kelly.

Vaccinated visitors will be able to watch from public viewing stands located on elevated portions of the FDR Drive in Manhattan. Nonvaccinated people will be able to watch the fireworks along the Queens, Brooklyn and Manhattan waterfronts.

Safer at Home- If you’re not ready to brave the crowds you can always watch from home by tuning into NBC for the “Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular” on Sunday, July 4, from 8-10 p.m. ET. You can also catch Washington D.C.’s “A Capitol Fourth” on PBS, Sunday, July 4, from 8-9:30 p.m. ET. ” A Capitol Fourth” will also stream on FacebookYouTube and on PBS’ webpage.


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