Nowhere is quite like New York, especially on the Fourth of July. Macy’s signature fireworks show, the largest in the nation, will once again ring in Independence Day with more than 48,000 shells and effects from five barges floating in the East River. While there are many places around the city hosting fireworks watch parties, there are seven official public viewing locations along two miles that will offer the best (read: free) views of the Macy’s Fourth of July show, including Midtown, Long Island City, Greenpoint, and Williamsburg.
4th of July
To most Americans, the Fourth of July means good food, drinks, time spent with family and friends, but most importantly, fireworks. Luckily for New Yorkers, the city has plenty of opportunities to see fireworks with Macy’s annual 4th of July Fireworks show and Jersey City’s own grand fireworks display. For those seeking an unforgettable Independence Day experience, here is a selection of the best ticketed events to enjoy this year’s July 4th fireworks celebration, from waterfront bars lining the East River’s piers to the city’s highest observation decks.
Jersey City’s 2019 fireworks display; Photo by Jennifer Brown/City of Jersey City
New Jersey’s largest Fourth of July fireworks display is returning to the Jersey City waterfront this year. Mayor Steven Fulop on Wednesday announced this year’s Freedom and Fireworks all-day event will include a concert headlined by Flo Rida, with special guests Shaquille O’Neal aka DJ Diesel and Fun Flex, a massive fireworks show by Grucci, food trucks, and family fun.
After most Fourth of July festivities were canceled or scaled-down in 2020 because of the pandemic, New Yorkers are more than ready to celebrate this year. With Macy’s annual 4th of July Fireworks show taking over the East River and Jersey City’s massive display sparkling over the Hudson River, there are plenty of places to take in the magic of pyrotechnics across New York City and the Jersey waterfront. To ring in Independence Day, we’ve rounded up the best places hosting firework viewing parties, from the highest observation deck in the Western Hemisphere to a cruise ship sailing around the Hudson River. In addition to these ticketed events, there are also several free public viewing locations, including elevated portions of FDR Drive in Manhattan.
Photo courtesy of CMA CGM Group
France is sending a mini version of the Statue of Liberty to the United States this month, 136 years after the iconic sculpture was unveiled on Liberty Island. The Embassy of France in the U.S., the Conservatoire national des arts et métiers, and shipping company CMA CGM Group announced last week that a replica of Lady Liberty will set sail from Paris on a nine-day journey across the Atlantic, arriving in New York City in time for the Fourth of July.
After a downsized celebration last year because of the pandemic, the Macy’s annual 4th of July Fireworks show is “back and literally better than ever,” Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Thursday. As part of the biggest Independence Day celebration in the country, Macy’s will launch more than 65,000 shells and effects from five barges positioned on the East River in Midtown.
Photo from the 2019 fireworks display by Jennifer Brown/City of Jersey City
Viewable from the New York and New Jersey waterfronts, a July 4th fireworks display will return to the Hudson River this year. Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop made the announcement that the Freedom and Fireworks event will take place after being canceled in 2020 due to Covid. “Since we revived Jersey City’s Fourth of July event in 2013, we’ve become a destination for the annual celebration, and I think it’s important to restore those traditions for residents and visitors to have something to look forward to,” said Mayor Fulop.
Image via Wiki Commons
For the first time in five years, Macy’s has moved its July 4th fireworks display to the Brooklyn Bridge, along with four barges that will launch pyrotechnics off the shore of the South Street Seaport’s Pier 17. The Pier, recently redeveloped by the Howard Hughes Corporation and designed by SHoP Architects, consists of food and drink options, retail, and a rooftop entertainment complex, all of which is supposed to be publicly accessible during operating hours according to a deal with the city. However, as Gothamist first reported, the only ways to check out the fireworks from Piers 16 and 17 are to drop $500 on a ticket to a party at Jean Georges’ restaurant The Fulton, be cool enough to land on the VIP list for a party atop Pier 17, or have scored one of just 300 community spots on the Seaport’s Wavertree ship (registration closed today at noon).
Image via Flickr
If you’re one of the estimated three million people who will be watching the Macy’s Fourth of July fireworks spectacular, you’ll need to factor in how MTA’s service changes and planned traffic interruptions might affect your plans. Once you’ve picked a viewing spot, check out our comprehensive guide to getting around town (or out of town, if you prefer) below.
Jersey City will celebrate July 4th with NJ’s largest fireworks display and a concert headlined by Pitbull, Mon, July 1, 2019
Photo via Flickr cc
Jersey City is getting ready to celebrate its sixth annual Fourth of July Festival, an epic full day celebration from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Exchange Place Plaza. The free event, called 50STAR FIRESHOW, will feature a carnival, beer festival, and a concert headlined by Jersey City’s own Akon and rapper Pitbull, before culminating with the largest fireworks display in the state.