July Fourth Fireworks: Spectacular pyrotechnic shows set to return in 2021

After a pandemic-induced hiatus last year, many places in the United States known for their Fourth of July celebrations will be back in action for 2021.

And the highlight of many of those celebrations will be an awe-inspiring display of fireworks, of course. 

From some of the biggest cities to smaller towns here’s a roundup of top places across the county to enjoy Fourth of July fireworks. Timings mentioned are all local time. 

New York City 

New York

The folks at Macy’s don’t rest their laurels on the Thanksgiving Parade. For summer, they put on the largest fireworks show in the nation.

Macy’s says it has worked to provide up to two miles of public viewing space for the free show. Live broadcast coverage of entertainment — including Reba McEntire and Black Pumas — starts at 8 p.m. Around 9:45 p.m., fireworks will be shot from barges in the East River. 


This annual event is beloved not only in Boston but across New England. In 2021, the fireworks and the concert will be held in different locations.

The fireworks portion stays in Beantown, with a show at Boston Common starting at 10:30 p.m. Meanwhile, the Boston Pops Independence Day concert will be held at Tanglewood in Western Massachusetts. Tickets are sold out, but will be broadcast from 8 to 11 p.m. 


The city where the entire independence thing was made official goes large for this holiday, with 16 days of events that started on Juneteenth.

The concert begins at 7 p.m. It culminates at 9:30 p.m. with fireworks display over the Philadelphia Museum of Art. People who want to watch the show from the Benjamin Franklin Parkway can begin arriving at 8 p.m. in the area between Eakins Oval and Logan Circle. 

Addison, Texas 

This Dallas County town has a population of about 15,300, but it puts on a show that is supposed to impress any “bigger is better” Texan.

While tickets for the celebration in Addison Park Circle are sold out, restaurants and hotels still have watch-party packages. The town will have a live stream on its YouTube channel. A “Freedom Flyover” patriotic airshow starts at 7:30 p.m., and the fireworks start at 9:30 p.m. 

Birmingham, Alabama

Birmingham, Alabama

Alabama’s biggest city puts on memorable fireworks display against the backdrop of the colossal Vulcan, the world’s largest cast iron statue.

Vulcan Park and Museum will close at 6 p.m. to prepare for the show. VisitVulcan.com says prime viewing locations include Five Points South, Homewood, Vestavia, Mountain Brook and the UAB campus. The 9 p.m. show will be televised. 

Clear Lake, Iowa 

People from Minneapolis and Des Moines who want some small-town Independence Day charm without giving up a big show can head to little Clear Lake.

This town of about 7,600 is serious about marking American independence. Events stretch out from Wednesday, June 30, to Monday, July. 5. The topper — Clear Lake’s renowned fireworks shows — starts at 10 p.m. 

Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Wouldn’t it be nice to listen to the Beach Boys before watching fireworks shot over balmy ocean waters? People in Fort Lauderdale will be able to do both this year.

The Beach Boys perform live from 7:30 to 9 p.m., and the seaside fireworks show starts immediately afterward. You can even take water taxis to the event. 

Las Vegas 

Las Vegas

So much of Vegas is literally a gamble, but it’s a pretty safe bet that Vegas will put on a dazzling firework show.

In fact, there will be various shows and events all over the area. But the biggest display will be on the Strip at 11 p.m., when fireworks will be shot off simultaneously from the rooftops of Caesars Palace, The Aria, Planet Hollywood, Treasure Island, The Venetian, The STRAT and the new Resorts World. 

Nashville, Tennessee 

The capital of Tennessee and of country music aims to deliver big in 2021: Country superstars and the largest fireworks show in the booming city’s history.

Brad Paisley is the headliner for the musical festivities. The entertainment starts at 4 p.m., and Paisley is set to take the stage a little after 8 p.m.

The fireworks show, accompanied by the Nashville Symphony, is slated to start at 9:30 p.m. The city plans four major firing areas downtown to cover more space over the scenic Cumberland River. 

Pasadena, California

Held at the iconic Rose Bowl, the in-person show is back after going virtual last year. The theme for 2021 is “Celebrating America’s Perseverance.”

The gates open at 5:30 p.m. with motocross shows scheduled for 6:30 and 8 p.m. The fireworks are set to go off at 9 p.m. This is a paid event, but areas around the stadium can provide fireworks views. 

San Diego

Southern Californians have good options for fireworks shows. Those around San Diego get the treat of Big Bay Boom, during which fireworks are set off from four barges in San Diego Bay.

Suggested viewing locations are Coronado Ferry Landing, Harbor Island. Shelter Island, the Marina District and North Embarcadero. And then anyone with a boat has great viewing options. The fireworks start at 9 p.m. and will broadcast live on several outlets in California. 

St. Louis 

Missouri’s largest city has an enviable backdrop for fireworks show: the Gateway Arch and the mighty Mississippi River.

Fair Saint Louis says it’s going to be the largest July 4 fireworks show it has ever produced. The show will start at about 9:40 p.m. Fair Saint Louis said it hopes “spectators will enjoy the fireworks show wherever they can safely view it, including by streaming live at home with their families or by watching from downtown restaurants and hotels in support of local businesses.” 

Washington, DC

Washington DC

No roundup of July 4th celebrations and fireworks shows is complete without an entry from the nation’s capital.

The 41st annual Capitol Fourth concert, hosted by Vanessa Williams, will be broadcast on PBS, though it will be recorded this year out of pandemic precautions. It starts at 8 p.m.

As for the fireworks, they’re set to be launched at 9:09 p.m. from both sides of the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool. 

Canceled celebrations

While the show is back on in many cities across the nation, some popular favorites have been canceled for 2021.

Those include Lake Tahoe’s “Lights on the Lake” and New Orleans’ “Go 4th on the River.” 

(Source: cnn.com)


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