Since 1958, the Macy’s Fourth of July fireworks display has been a New York City tradition. The fireworks were originally set off on the Hudson, but in 1976 they moved to the East River. Last year, they returned to the Hudson to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson’s exploration of the river. This year, the display will be on the Hudson again. It starts at 9:20 p.m. and should last 26 minutes. The theme of this year’s show is “Gift of Freedom”; the event will celebrate the 125th anniversary of the Statue of Liberty. After the jump, we’ve got some suggestions on where to watch the fireworks.
West Side Highway: Between West 23rd street and 59th street, the West Side Highway will be blocked off and turned into a giant block party from 4 p.m. until 1 a.m. If you’re going to go here, you should show up early, so you can get a good spot. Pro-Tip: don’t bring a bag, because it’ll probably get searched, and you’ll get hassled.
Jersey: If you’re feeling daring, you can make a trip across the river to watch the fireworks from Hoboken. Apparently, the view from Jersey City is alright, but not as good as from Hoboken. If we’ve learned one thing from Jersey Shore, though, it’s that you shouldn’t get drunk on the beach in Jersey.
A Friend’s Roof: If you have a friend with a really tall apartment building on the West side, you better start looking for an invite. This is the most comfortable free way to enjoy the festivities; you can set up a barbecue and a cooler and spend the whole day celebrating your freedom. If the building has a nice view, it might be crowded on the roof, but that’s a risk you’ll have to take.
On the Water: If you’re feelin’ fancy, you can board a party cruise and watch the fireworks directly above your head. It’ll probably run you $125 for a ticket, and that’s before drinks, but if you love America, what’s a hundred bucks to show the world your patriotism?
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on July 1, 2011