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The Best Fireworks Shows Across the Country

June 22nd, 2016 - 2:12 PM

Find the best fireworks show near you

Whether you've just moved to a new area and are looking for amazing July 4th fireworks displays near you, or you want to take an epic summer road trip to see one of these fun events, this list of 20 amazing Independence Day celebrations across the U.S. is for you. Most of these events take place on July 4th (we’ve noted when the date is different) and many of them include plenty of activities besides the firework show. Take a look at the infographic below to see where to find the biggest Fourth of July celebrations, and then read more about each one.  


20 Awesome Fireworks Displays​

These top fireworks displays can be found across the country. There is sure to be one near you! Take a short drive and spend the holiday enjoying the impressive displays in one of these cities:

  1. Nashville, TN – Let Freedom Sing – You would expect nothing less than a day of concerts from Music City! In fact, there’s a whole weekend full of events. On July 3rd, you can check DJ DU, Shelly Colvin and Jason Eskridge, and Sheryl Crow will headline the concert on the Fourth. The big display is set to live music from the Nashville Symphony and will last over 30 minutes. It’s one of the largest firework shows in the country with more than 55,000 shells. Check out the entire event details here.
  2. New Orleans, LA – Go 4th on the River – Watch from the Historic Downtown New Orleans Riverfront as fireworks are shot from dueling barges. While you’re downtown, check out several discounted attractions and outlet mall shopping. See the full list of events online.
  3. San Francisco, CA – Fourth of July Celebration at Fisherman’s Wharf – Celebrate all day along the waterfront with concerts and watch the 25-minute thrilling display of fireworks over the bay. Enjoy the shopping and seafood of Fisherman’s Wharf, then head over to Pier 39 to see the big display. You can watch the show from a boat on the bay!
  4. St. Louis, MO – America’s Biggest Birthday Party – Head to Forest Park for Fair Saint Louis' weekend of celebration. There is a full schedule of events on July 2nd, 3rd, and 4th including concerts, a 4-mile race and sports demonstrations. The weekend ends with a giant fireworks display each night. It’s dubbed “America’s Biggest Birthday Party” with over 15,000 pounds of fireworks over the three nights. Find the full schedule here.
  5. Denver, CO – Independence Eve – Like the name says, this event happens on July 3rd. There’s a free concert, light show and fireworks display. You can catch a performance of the 101st Army Band from Buckley Air Force Base. Get more info from the Civic Center Conservancy.
  6. Philadelphia, PA – 4th of July Jam, Party on the Parkway and Wawa Welcome America! – Philly knows how to party with a week of fun. Wawa Welcome America! starts on June 27, and then Party on the Parkway and 4th of July Jam happen on the Fourth. Eat delicious food, listen to a local band, play games and check out the Grand Finale Fireworks with more than 15,000 shell fireworks. Top off the night with the largest free concert in the country with July Jam. See the full schedule here.
  7. Tacoma, WA – Freedom Fair – This year’s Freedom Fair includes an air show, concerts and car show, and is topped off by a memorial fireworks display in honor of Stan Naccarato, who passed away earlier in the year. Stan was a special part of this event, and you can bet they will celebrate his honor with a great show! See the schedule, get directions and buy online tickets.
  8. Atlanta, GA – 4th of July Celebration at Centennial Olympic Park – In A Town, you can see the Southeast’s largest fireworks display along with live entertainment. Get details here.
  9. New York, NY – Macy’s Fireworks Show – This show is known as the biggest fireworks show in the nation! Lasting almost 30 minutes with over 50,000 effects, this year will be historic – 2016 is the 40th anniversary of this celebration! The big show goes up over the East River, so get a rooftop spot or watch from one of the bridge or ferry parks. Performers include Kenny Chesney and the USAF Band. See the full event information and find out where to view the show.  
  10. Boston, MA – Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular – Come out on July 3rd and 4th for this fun event. On the 3rd, you can take in the concert by the Boston Pops, and on the July Fourth, a concert with fireworks. This event is broadcasted nationwide as fireworks go off while the Boston Pops play. Along with the legendary music accompaniment, you can see the remarkable array of fireworks shot from seven barges in the Charles River. Check out the details online.
  11. Washington, D.C. – A Capitol Fourth – One of the biggest Fourth of July celebrations is found in our nation's capital. This event is televised on PBS and features concerts, traditional patriotic marches and an impressive fireworks display from the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol. Get details on the concert and fireworks.
  12. Houston, TX – Freedom over Texas – Deep in the heart of Texas, you’ll find concerts, a fun kid’s zone, a beer garden, military salutes and a fireworks finale all at Eleanor Tinsley Park on Buffalo Bayou. Get any questions answered in their FAQs.
  13. Addison, TX – Kaboom Town – Come out and party on July 3rd and enjoy food, warbird flyovers, and one of the top-five July 4th shows in the country as rated by the Wall Street Journal! This 30-minute-long display features over 3,500 pounds of fireworks. Get the full schedule and find local watch parties across the area.
  14. Minneapolis, MN – Red, White, and Boom! – The day begins with a half marathon, relay, a 5k and continues with family events like live music and games. Finish the night with amazing fireworks. Learn how to get involved from the parks department.
  15. Atlantic City, NJ – 4th of July Fireworks – Catch shows on July 3rd and 4th! See fireworks from two barges on the beach and boardwalk on the 3rd and from the Marina District on the Fourth. Each show is choreographed to music, and over 250,000 people will enjoy the festivities. Find out times and locations here.
  16. Chicago, IL – Windy City Independence Day – See the fireworks at Navy Pier. Watch from land or take a cruise around the lake to see the show from the water. While you’re there, ride on the giant 150-foot Ferris wheel. See the schedule online.
  17. Miami Beach, FL – Fire on the Fourth – Come out of the beach for concerts, food trucks, a live DJ and fireworks right on the beach! Free shuttles are available to take you to the activities. Find details here.
  18. Lake Tahoe, CA – Lights on the Lake – The American Pyrotechnics Association rates this show as one of the top-five best fireworks in the country! And you’re in luck – there are many unique ways to view the firecrackers: from the beach, from a boat, from a yacht or even from a helicopter! Get a good spot and sit tight for the over 25-minute display. Learn more about the event.
  19. San Diego, CA – Big Bay Boom – Across the San Diego Bay, four different barges launch fireworks across the water. You can watch from Shelter Island to Coronado Ferry Landing! Even the San Diego Midway Aircraft Museum will open the top deck for a family-style picnic viewing including live music. See the top spots for viewing, and get details about transportation and parking.
  20. State College, PA – Central PA 4th Fest – This celebration includes a Firecracker 4K and 4M run, a Heroes Parade honoring community groups, military and emergency services, and a fireworks display with VIP ticket options for the best viewing experience. Come out on the 3rd for food and music, and return on July 4th for everything else. Get the schedule and information.

best fireworks displays

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Did any of these celebrations sound like something worth traveling for? Is there a fireworks celebration near you that you’d like to share? We are always adding to our list and would love to hear from you!