Jessie: In the nation’s capital for the holiday!
Happy Independence Day to all our readers! Not only is it a day to remember the founders of our nation, it is also a day to attend parades, host barbecues and to wear red white and blue. Many Americans end the day stretched out on a blanket watching a dazzling display of fireworks.
What I wondered was whether or not all of you love fireworks or if you prefer to give them a miss?
Edith: I do love the wonder and awe of fireworks, even though at root they celebrate wartime. In my town they are held across from a big hill that is town land, a former farm. Everybody heads up there, many on foot, and bring picnics. Afterward the road back into town is closed to cars and we all walk home. It feel wonderfully old-fashioned, which is why I had to stage a murder during the 1888 fireworks in Called to Justice, Quaker Midwife Mystery #2 – which is on sale right now!
Barb: I love fireworks, too. Because of technological advances, they’re one of the few things that are just as magnificent now as I remember them as a kid. The fireworks in Boothbay Harbor take place over the water in direct line of sight from our front porch, so we don’t even have to leave home to view them. I included fireworks over the harbor in Boiled Over, the second Maine Clambake Mystery.
Sherry: I love fireworks, but hate the crowds and the traffic. So I guess I like them if they are easily accessible. But since our sweet Lily hates them this isn’t the best week for us.
Julie: I love fireworks, but will confess that the noise gives me more pause than it used to. That said, I can see the Boston fireworks from my living room window, and enjoy having my family over so we can have a picnic indoors and enjoy the show. I’ve also seen the fireworks at Old Orchard Beach, and that was wonderful.
Jessie: I adore fireworks! I love the colors and the surprise of what sort of formation will light up next. I love the sparkle and the finale. We never went to them when I was a child and I always wished that we had. Now, as an adult, our house in Old Orchard Beach is within easy walking distance of the beach where they are set off every Thursday night. If it doesn’t rain I go every week. It has become a tradition I have loved sharing with my own kids!
Liz: I like them if I choose to go to a fireworks display. I confess, I don’t like it much when people set off random fireworks in neighborhoods, which seems to happen more often than not over the years! Shaggy and the cats don’t love the noise, either, so I always feel bad for them. But not to sound like a party pooper – I think when done right in a proper show, they are amazing.
Readers, do you love to attend the fireworks? If so, where are your favorites? If not, do you have another way you like to celebrate Independence Day?
I love fireworks, but like Sherry, I hate the crowds, so we don’t attend any of the festivities. When we had our camp in Confluence, PA, the town set off a lovely display that I could watch out the window from the comfort of my bed. Surprisingly, Kensi loved them too and often took over the window, blocking my view! Just one of the things I miss about our camp.
What a lovely memory, Annette!
I like fireworks. Last year we went to Atlantic City for the 4th and had the most wonderful experience watching fireworks on the beach, surrounded by people from so many places, communicating in so many languages. Lots of kids having fun and everyone patiently waited to get back onto the boardwalk. That was one of remember….I am like Liz in that the local yahoos bother me, particularly when it’s hot and dry. My poor dog used to hide under the coffee table with her paws over her ears.
I love the way your experience shows people at their best, Ramona!
This is my favorite holiday and I love fireworks. Since moving to DC I haven’t attended in person though – can’t take the crowds. We can see most of the Capitol fireworks from our bedroom (some are blocked by our neighbor’s trees), so I still get to watch without going anywhere!
From the comfort of your own place sounds quite luxurious! Especially if you have air conditioning!
Too many people, too much noise. I like watching from afar or on TV.
They can lovely that way too!
I love fireworks, but like Sherry and Annette hate crowds. We did the big show in Pittsburgh a couple times. Now we mostly hang on the front porch and catch glimpses of the smaller displays at some of the local golf courses.
Works for me, Liz!
Over her in Gutenberg Land, they don’t celebrate the fourth much- of course- just the German tennis club, that holds a yearly “American” barbecue party. With fireworks.
The Twenty-seventh of June, though, is Gutenberg’s birthday, and the site of the biggest festival on the Rhine each year, a huge carnival with rides and and a giant ferriswheel, and three sets of fireworks- one from the town hall on the Rhine river, just ground displays and a few middle-sized displays, and then the real thundering crashers, shot off from a barge in the middle of the river, and reaching huge heights.
The display ends, then, with a final set of ground and mid-level fireworks, shot off from near an ancient Roman citadel, near a meadow Frederick Barbaros used for his yearly midsummer picnic. (Germans don’t do anything that isn’t historical)
PS This morning my German husband sang me the US national anthem- at six am- so I had to get out of bed to stand and salute. Ex-pats take these things seriously. Happy fourth to everyone.
Sounds amazing! And what a nice husband. ;^)
What a fun experience! Happy Independence Day to you!
I’m with Edith. Fireworks are representative of a lot of things-war among them-but they are symbols of so much more. I can actually sit on our hill and see them across the valley in about 4 different towns!
The fireworks I’d like would have little or no noise — just the beautiful displays of cascading light in the night sky. In Florida, a couple of years ago, my condo had a wonderful “front row” view of fireworks set off over the ocean–a double vision of those lights. Yet far enough away that closed windows muted the noise. (Display was for Founders’ Day in January, not July 4.) Happy Independence Day!
Sounds like the best of both worlds!
This is the first year I haven’t lived in the Boston area. Every year we watched the Boston Pops. The 1812 Overture is always amazing. One year they sung it in Russian, I never heard it that way before. We are going to try to find it online to watch and put in on our large screen.
I love watching the Boston Pops on television! I hope you find it!
I prefer the fireworks that are set off by towns as opposed to the ones people set off themselves.
I agree completely!
I totally agree with Liz. It is fun to go to a planned professional fireworks display. But these random neighborhood fireworks are dangerous and scare my poor Corgi, Paddy. Not to mention, the ones at New Years that go off till all hours after midnight.
If I didn’t have to fight traffic across town, I’d love fireworks. As it is, I skip them most years these days. I’m jealous of those of you who can enjoy them from your house. If I could do that, I definitely would.
I love fireworks. Over the (many) years, I have seen a huge variety of them – from (legal) backyard ones to the display on the Boston Esplanade, both from the Esplanade and from the 44th floor of the Prudential Tower. I’ve seen a wonderfully choreographed with music display put on by a Pennsylvania fireworks manufacturer, and a very undisciplined show in a small town in Peru. Tonight I’m going to a small town show in Bisbee, AZ. I’m really looking forward to it because I enjoy small town celebrations.
Love the look of them, but can’t bear the sound and the crowds.
I love them! We always go to the Philadelphia fireworks show with the kids.
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