Make History this Fourth of July
There’s no place more diverse than the New York metro melting pot—and no better place to celebrate all that makes this country great. Throughout the area, there will be an equally diverse array of Independence Day festivities, so don your red, white and blue and get in on the fun.
In Manhattan, the skies will be ablaze with the 35th annual Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks show. Millions will enjoy the spectacle in person and live on NBC-TV as the pyrotechnics are launched from barges on the Hudson River. With the theme “American Harmony,” the production will feature music by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir, New York Pops Orchestra and U.S. Army Soldier’s Chorus—and it will all be simulcast on 1010 WINS radio. Go to www.macys.com for more information.
For a different view of the show, board the Spirit of New Jersey in Weehawken for a five-hour dinner cruise on the Hudson. The event includes a lavish buffet dinner, open bar, live entertainment—and, of course, an incomparable vantage point for watching the display above. Boarding begins at 5 pm. For details visit the Spirit Cruises website: www.spiritofnewjersey.com.
If you’re looking for a party with a family-friendly price tag, head to Bridgewater’s North Branch Park for the annual Independence Day Family Festival. The free celebration runs from 5 to 11 pm on July 4. There’s also a moonwalk, magic shows, children’s activities and Revolutionary War re-enactors—something for patriots of all ages. Fireworks round out the perfect day. Directions and additional information are available at www.somersetcountyparks.org.
In Philly, the celebration starts on June 24 and continues through July 4 during the Wawa Welcome America Festival—11 days of music, food and more. There’s a Chinatown Block Party, art and photography exhibits, a Hoagie Day event and several nights of outdoor movies in a variety of settings. It all culminates in Party on the Parkway on the Fourth from noon to 6 pm, a mile jam-packed with free entertainment, games and concessions. And afterwards beginning at 7 pm, the 4th of July Jam, the country’s largest free outdoor concert, features The Roots with guests Earth, Wind and Fire, Michael McDonald, Sara Bareilles and others, and a fireworks display that will blow your mind. For a complete schedule, go to www.welcomeamerica.com.
In nearby Washington Crossing, Independence Day traditions run deep—and date back to 1776. Washington Crossing is the site where General Washington and his Continental Army crossed the Delaware, and today is home to an expansive historic park and the 31st annual Revolutionary Run. The event includes a 10K race, a 5K run/walk and 1-mile fun run, all in a picturesque setting that bears so much history. After the race, stroll the 134-acre wildflower preserve and tour the historic buildings and grave sites. Or, climb the 125-foot Bowman’s Tower for sweeping views of the Delaware River below. To participate in the Revolutionary Run, register online by June 30 at www.umbarevrun.com. For details about Washington Crossing Historic Park, go to ushistory.org/ washingtoncrossing.
However you celebrate this Fourth of July, our area has all the makings of a memorable holiday. Plan now to party like a patriot.