The 238th celebration of America's independence from Britain will take place this Friday, July 4.
More than a year following the start of the American Revolutionary War, John Adams spearheaded the colonial plan to declare a formal secession from Great Britain, a notion that was unanimously voted upon by the Continental Congress who approved the Declaration of Independence on July 2, 1776.
The vote against the rule of King George III occurred in the Pennsylvania State House, now known as Independence Hall, in Philadelphia. The Declaration, penned by Thomas Jefferson, would be ratified two days later, and July Fourth would eventually become the historic holiday Americans now celebrate.
Check out the forecasts and sights of five of America's best Independence Day fireworks displays, according to Travel+Leisure's "Best July 4 Fireworks."
The birthplace of American Independence features an explosive array of pyrotechnics that light up the skies across the historic city every Fourth of July. Philadelphia’s celebrations kicked off on June 28 and will continue until July Fourth, closing with the Philly 4th of July Jam & Grand Finale Fireworks. The display is set to begin around 10:30 p.m. EDT, near Benjamin Franklin Parkway, between 20th Street and Eakins Oval. “It wouldn't be Independence Day without fireworks and this year there are several explosive shows happening in Philadelphia during the week of July Fourth,” according to the city’s website. Spectators can find the best viewing spots by checking the city’s website.
Hurricane Arthur will bring early rain to the area, but the skies should clear in time for the fireworks, AccuWeather Meteorologist Brian Edwards said.
The explosive force of more than 40,000 pyrotechnic effects is scheduled to illuminate the skies above the shores of lower Manhattan and Brooklyn on Independence Day. The dazzling light show, a tradition that has spanned for nearly four decades, is America’s largest firework display.
The 2014 event is scheduled to erupt at the launch site located near the lower end of New York’s East River at 9:20 p.m. Spectators can find the best viewing sites by checking the organization’s website.
“In addition to the fireworks launching from the bridge, three barges will be positioned on the lower East River spanning the area from the Manhattan and Brooklyn bridges, heading south towards the shores of the historic South St. Seaport maritime district and Brooklyn’s famed park piers and promenade,” according to Macy’s website.
Hurricane Arthur could also bring rain to the New York City area, but drier weather will be in store at the time of the fireworks, Edwards said.
Beginning in 1929, the first series of free outdoor concerts in the world would be hosted on Boston’s Department of Conservation and Recreation Esplanade. Arthur Fiedler would pave the way to what would become one of the nation’s largest outdoor concert and fireworks venues. On July 4, 1979, the Boston tradition was born with the booming sounds of howitzer cannons, church bells, and fireworks accompanying the "1812 Overture."
Since that time, more than 500,000 people have gathered along the sides of the Charles River to await the fireworks that dance to the orchestra’s score.
Parking and viewing areas can be found on the organization’s website.
Due Hurricane Arthur, the event has been rescheduled to July 3, according to the website.
Even with the change of date, the celebration might not be able to completely avoid threatening weather.
"Thursday will be warm and humid. There will be showers and thunderstorms around for this afternoon and this evening but it does not look like a complete washout," said AccuWeather.com Meteorologist Mark Paquette.
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Downpours will raise the risk of localized flooding across the southeastern United States prior to a push of drier air over the weekend.