Few things are as closely associated with the 4th of July as fireworks, an American tradition that strikes to the core of our Independence Day celebrations. However, not all fireworks shows are created equally. Indeed, if last Friday had you reeling from the low-budget, low-quality display of your local town or city, you might consider taking your family out to a more legitimate, exciting, or memorable show of flammable patriotism.
It is in honor of that decision, and out of a desire to help you make it, that we here at Traveler's Today have listed below the five best firework shows in the US, places to consider visiting next year for their unbelievable displays and the unbelievable memories that goes along with them.
5. Nashville, Tennessee
The first city on the list, nothing says Nashville like their annual Fourth of July "Let Freedom Sing!" show, a combination of fireworks and live music that draws locals and non-natives alike every year. Costing around $125,000 and lasting sometimes as long as 30 minutes, Nashville boasts the "biggest show in the South," a mantle anyone who has seen the display would say it more than lives up to. The addition of performances by rising stars, including, this year, Billy Currington, Ashley Monroe, and Striking Matches, makes the show all the more spectacular, an event everyone in the family can truly enjoy.
4. Boston, Massachusetts
The oldest city in the country, it's fitting that Boston, Massachusetts would be also be home to one of its best firework displays. From the ambience provided by the Charles River to the 2.5 million dollar pricetag, everything about this show is picture perfect. However, the most notable aspect are the fireworks musical accompaniment, provided by the one and only Boston Pops Orchestra. Plus, if you don't want to trek all the way to New England, consider just turning on your TV set - the Boston Fireworks show is televised every year.
3. Addison, Texas
This small suburb of Dallas takes its fireworks very, very seriously. Home to just 19,000 people, Addison (nicknamed "Kaboom" Town) spends over $200,000 on its display every year, attracting over 500,000 visitors to see just how patriotic small-town America can be. Add to that the fact that the show is one of the best in the world, as ranked by Yahoo, the Travel Channel, and the American Pyrotechnics Association, and you've got a recipe for a down-home independence day celebration you'll never forget.
2. New York
Of course, the Big Apple needs a place on any list of large, extravagant displays, and fireworks are no exception. Shooting up from the Brooklyn Bridge over the East River (a change from the shows of the last couple years, which went out on the West Side, over the Hudson), this Macy's sponsored fireworks show is certainly one of the best in the country. The only downside is that it's hard to find a seat. With over 3 million visitors every year, this show is one of the most popular in the country, making the annual 4th of July festivities a little more congested than some of the others on the list.
1. Washington, D.C.
However, the number one spot is reserved for something slightly more patriotic. While not as expensive as Boston or as lavish as Addison, the very location of the Washington D.C. fireworks shoot them to the top of this list. Set off every year right above the national mall, a typical D.C. 4th of July has the red glare of the pyrotechnics showing above national landmarks like the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial, and the White House, making the show all the more exciting. The fact that the city shells out over a quarter of a million dollars for the show every year, or that it lasts a full 17 minutes, only adds to the fun. Just be sure to get there early. The best seats in the house (the ones right next to the reflecting pool), will start getting filled early in the morning, so you'll want to come prepared!