With summer kicking off, it’s time to start thinking about where you’ll celebrate the 4th of July this year. Chances are, you can find a fireworks display (or at least a barbecue) in or near your hometown, but if you like large gatherings, no holiday offers a sense of community like our nation’s birthday does. Here’s a list of family-friendly places to celebrate the Fourth of July:
- Philadelphia, PA. Take a trip to the city where our Founding Fathers wrote the Declaration of Independence. (Historical footnote: The document wasn’t officially ratified on July 4, 1776, but rather over several weeks.) Start with the Welcome America festival, move on to the “Largest Free Concert” in the nation (starring John Mayer, Neo, Demi Lovato, and others), and end with the Grand Finale Fireworks display at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
- Boston, MA. The Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular is an annual tradition, preceded this year by a concert featuring Susan Tedeschi, Howie Day, Ayla Brown, and Ellis Hall. Come early and stay late: Boston Harborfest runs from July 2-7 and offers fun for the whole family, culminating in the 32nd Annual Chowderfest on July 7.
- New York, NY. It doesn’t share the obvious historical connections to our nation’s birthday that Boston and Philadelphia have, but there’s no shortage of things to do in New York around the 4th of July. From Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest to the Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks (curated by Usher, featuring Mariah Carey and Tim McGraw, and hosted by Nick Cannon) and beyond, you have a bushel of Big Apple options.
- Washington, D.C. Our nation’s capital pulls out all the stops to celebrate the 4th of July. From a reading of the Declaration of Independence at the National Archives to the National Independence Day Parade to the Fourth of July Fireworks show on the National Mall and more, your family can mark the occasion with patriotic events throughout D.C.
If it seems that East Coast cities get all the glory here, it’s true; they do, for one simple reason: These destinations were all there for our country’s birth and/or intimately involved in its formative years, and their 4th of July traditions are well-established and acclaimed. That doesn’t mean you can’t commence or continue your own traditions elsewhere, of course. (If you have better ideas about where to celebrate the 4th of July, please let us know in the comments below.)
Wherever you choose to celebrate the 4th of July, here’s hoping you do so in style — and savings: Travel Plus members can earn 5% cash back on flight and hotel reservations and enjoy rebates on travel conveniences.
One cautionary reminder: Please be careful if fireworks are in your plans.