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Old 06-29-2009, 02:21 PM
fsp fsp started this thread
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This will be my first 4th of July in Boston and I'm excited about the fireworks. We live in Cambridge, close to the river so we are planning on walking to the river near the Longfellow bridge.

We'd like to bring a blanket and get a good spot. Does anyone know what time we should plan on getting to the river? I have heard that you need to get to the Boston/Esplanade side before noon, but I can't imagine the Cambridge side is that in demand. Thanks!
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Old 06-29-2009, 08:57 PM
Location: Cambridge, MA
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Oh, it is, ever since speaker towers started appearing on that side of the river. I haven't gotten up close to the fireworks for over ten years. The congestion of cars and people afterwards isn't worth it.
You can get an almost-perfect vantage point from Central Square into town along Mass. Ave, "almost" because some of the pyro which is lower can't be fully seen. But most of the display unfurls plenty high up. Plus, distance offers the advantage of not being right at all the noise and smoke.
BTW it should be mentioned, seeing as how the weather has stayed stuck in March so far, that the displays have gone on pretty much no matter what. Some years all you can see is bright colors behind clouds!
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Old 06-30-2009, 02:21 PM
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I've actually had a great deal of success watching the fireworks from the Longfellow Bridge itself. It's a pretty great vantage point, no trees in the way, etc. As a bonus you can watch the red line go by oh-so-slowly while passengers gawk at the fireworks from the windows.
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Old 06-30-2009, 10:55 PM
Location: Cambridge, MA
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One year I was on a Red Line train, running late for the display, when the train emerged onto the bridge just as the show was starting. The operators were great about slowing down - the friend I was with and I saw over five minutes' worth in air-conditioned comfort. If only one could cross the station at Kendall, to switch directions, for free. That'd be the perfect way to take in most of the excitement. With the Longfellow under reconstruction a lot of the pedestrian walkway has been blocked off, so it's bound to fill up quickly. If the weather's agreeable the same can be predicted for the Harvard (Mass. Ave) bridge.
Once upon a time it was pretty easy to sneak into Walker Memorial and other MIT buildings that face Memorial Dr, but that was before the Big Brother era of "homeland security" cameras everywhere you look. So if you have the patience I'd recommend showing up no later than daybreak (not kidding) to stand a chance of snagging prime real estate. Bring plenty of water or whatever your beverage of choice might be, as well as snacks and picnic meals, and when one person needs a bathroom break have the other(s) hold the spot. Needless to say, if you're Caucasian or otherwise light-complexioned prepare with sunscreen ahead of time.
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Old 07-01-2009, 07:04 AM
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I know the fireworks only last about 30 minutes. I've been and watched them on the Longfellow Bridge, but it is very congested for a short and average firework display. The only neat part is watching the reflection in the buildings and water. It isn't bad to do once though.

The best fireworks display in New England every year is in Jaffrey, NH. Yes, you heard me right. They do it in August (I think August 15th this year), and the finale goes for about 30 minutes and the fireworks are usually an hour or more.
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Old 07-12-2009, 07:55 PM
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They do an excellent show in Jaffrey NH because Jaffrey is home to Atlas Fireworks, the company that supplies the fireworks for all sorts of other towns' and cities' displays.

This year, on August 15th, is the 20th anniversary Festival of Fireworks at the Jaffrey airport so it should be a great show. Here's the link: Atlas firework events and firework displays, 4th of July fireworks in NH, CT, VT and MA
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Old 07-12-2009, 09:36 PM
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For future reference Arlington has a great area to watch the fire-works, they even have a concert before hand---at the park in Arlington Heights off Park St. - by the water-tower---they set up a video projector screen with audio --piped in...so you can hear and see the pops concert and everything and then ---you can see the entire Boston Skyline and the fire-works light it up.

It is an amazing show

easily accessible by the bus routes from Alewife (red Line) check the schedules t hough I think they may be on a Sunday schedule for 4th of July

plenty of parkin on side strees around the heights
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