5 Ways To Celebrate July 4th In NYC

A view of from New Jersey of the George Washington Bridge and Fireworks in New York City
Photo Credit: metronyctours.com

America’s birthday is just around the corner, and while many choose to head out East for the long weekend, we can’t think of a better place to celebrate the red, white, and blue than right here in the heart of America–New York City. (Can you tell a New Yorker is writing this?) From firework viewings to beach parties, here are the events we’re looking forward to for the 4th of July.

A view of fireworks lighting up the sky with the Empire State Building lit up in the background
Photo Credit: https://www.chacha.com/

The Macy’s Firework Show

Just like Macy’s is the star of the Thanksgiving Parade in the city, it also shines brightest for the NYC firework display. This year marks its 40th anniversary, and the spot to grab during the 25-minute show is near the Brooklyn Bridge. Bring a blanket and picnic and get a live viewing of what the rest of the country is watching on TV! The best viewing locations: Broad Street and/or Old Slip at Water Street, Brooklyn Bridge entry from St. James Place (Pearl Street) & Wagner Place, Montgomery & South Streets.  From the north, you can snag views along the FDR between the Manhattan Bridge and Montgomery Street, as well as Brooklyn Bridge Park and Brooklyn Bridge Promenade.  Obviously, get there early for the best views–the show starts around 9:25pm.

The corner of a brick building with a black sign that says "Fraunces Tavern" and a portrait of George Washington below it
Photo Credit: https://www.boweryboyshistory.com/

Nighttime Walking Tour of Revolutionary War New York

There’s no place better to truly gain an appreciation of our war for independence than lower Manhattan.  In the wee morning hours just before sunrise (yes, 4:30am, I’m talking to you!), you’ll retrace the steps of prominent Revolutionary War figures, greeting dawn’s early light at Trinity Church. The tour starts at Fraunces Tavern Museum, most famous as the spot where George Washington gave his farewell address to his officers in the Continental Army.

A view of Coney Island from the water
Photo Credit: Melissa Sinclair

Party all day and night at the Coney Island Beach Party

Live music, booze, food, fireworks and a beach view—you can’t ask for much more than that on Independence Day. Plus: it’s free! Last year’s party began at 9am and went until midnight, so stay hydrated and get ready for a full day of patriotic partying!

Four boys, holding hands, running in a circle under a stream of water.
Photo Credit: Harlem Children’s Parade Facebook

Take the Kids to the July 4th Harlem Children’s Parade

Now in its 21st year, this Independence Day Parade is a neighborhood favorite. Grab a moment of Zen with Land Yoga’s yoga for kids (10am) before joining a lively procession of families down Morningside Drive, led by an NYFD fire truck! The real fun starts after the parade is over, when the fire truck turns on its hose to spray cool, refreshing water on the entire block, so be sure to bring swimsuits for the littles. Free lemonade and snacks are provided, and prizes are awarded for the best-decorated bikes, tricycles and scooters.

Contestants standing in front of a Giant hanging Nathan's Hotdog at Nathan's famous Hotdog Eating Contest
Photo Credit: https://www.nydailynews.com/

Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest

Okay, you foodies are probably laughing, but hear me out–this year’s hot dog eating contest is a pretty big deal because it celebrates the 100th anniversary of Nathan’s! Join thousands of others on the corner of Surf and Stillwell to see this amazing foodie feat in person, as contestants shove upwards of 60+ hot dogs and buns into their mouths! Now if that’s not patriotic, I don’t know what is!

What 4th of July traditions do you celebrate every year? Share your patriotic days with us on Facebook and Twitter!

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