It’s a part of who we are as Americans. We love our fireworks, especially on July 4. While every town in America gets in on the act, the bigger the fireworks, the better. And no one does July 4 fireworks like our big cities. They spend millions of dollars for 15 minutes of glory. For those of you fortunate enough to get to the big city this July 4, check out these impressive fireworks displays. We have compiled several lists of the best, from many sources. Here, we present a consensus of the 15 best places to watch fireworks this July 4, starting with the very best.
1. Addison, Texas. This north Texas city offers the largest fireworks display in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area. With more than 1,500 pounds of fireworks, this Texas-sized party – complete with live entertainment and air shows – has been recognized by the American Pyrotechnics Association for its over-the-top demonstration.
2. Atlantic City, New Jersey. Visible for a one-mile stretch of the boardwalk and beach from Revel Resort to the Atlantic Club, the fireworks in Atlantic City are a show that must not be missed. Following the fireworks, a 3-D light show will debut in the Boardwalk Hall façade and will continue every night for the next year.
3. Boston, Massachusetts. Sponsored by the Boston Pops, this spectacular attracts 500,000 people to the Charles River for the best view, every year. The fireworks are accompanied by concerts. Locals argue that the best viewing is across the river in Cambridge, MA.
4. Chicago, Illinois. The Navy Pier is the place to be in the Windy City this July 4. They offer a dinner cruise on Lake Michigan, offering a spectacular view with the massive city skyline as a backdrop, beyond the Lake.
5. Houston, Texas. America’s fourth largest city (soon to be third) proves everything is bigger in Texas. They offer the nation’s largest land-based fireworks show. The annual “Freedom Over Texas” celebration features a full six hours of family fun activities and entertainment, followed by a massive fireworks show that is choreographed to music.
6. Lake Tahoe, California. Dig your feet into the sand at Lake Tahoe and take in a display that The Today Show recently recognized as one of America’s best. Best viewing is from the beach – Edgewood or Lakeside Beach. It’s so big they gave it a name – “The Lights on the Lake Spectacular.”
7. Nashville, Tennessee. They offer fun for the whole family in the Music City. “Let Freedom Sing” attracts the largest July 4 crowd in the South. The 27-minute fireworks show is choreographed to a live performance by the Grammy award-winning Nashville Symphony Orchestra.
8. New Orleans, Louisiana. Barges battle on the Mississippi River at “Go 4th on the River in New Orleans.” The fireworks display, set to music provided by the Navy Band, can be seen from many places around New Orleans if you want to avoid the downtown traffic.
9. New York City, New York. They offer the country’s largest pyrotechnic show in New York, with fireworks shot from multiple barges along the East River near the Brooklyn Bridge. In addition to the fireworks, the event features performances by A-list artists from around the country.
10. Pasadena, California. This one is a Rose Bowl Stadium tradition. They have perfected this for over 85 years. The largest show in Southern California, the fun-filled event begins at 2:00 p.m. and includes live entertainment, motorcycle stunts, exhibits, vendors, and a Pyro Spectacular by Souza Fourth of July fireworks show at 9:00 p.m.
The Rest – These are just outside our “Top Ten” list. But if you can’t get to the others, try one of these. In Philadelphia, lay out a blanket along Boa Row or in Schuylkill River Park. In San Francisco, take in the music of the Air Force Band and set your chair near Fisherman’s Wharf. If you live in the nation’s heartland, St. Louis is the place to be. “America’s Biggest Birthday Party” is set by the beautiful arch. Or check out the show at Washington, D.C., where they launch the fireworks from behind the Capitol and Washington Monument. And if you can’t get to any of those, there is one more place to view the July 4 spectacular. It may be the best place of all. Try your home town. There is nothing better than joining with family and friends to celebrate the big day. This is a great time to remember all that is good about America. Happy 239th birthday, America. May we all join in on the celebration!