I might be biased, but there is a hardly a better place to experience everything that 4th of July weekend has to offer than in and around Boston. Here are just some ideas for you on where to take your family next weekend in Boston, Rhode Island and Western Massachusetts.
(Photo credit: Angela Tseng of Mommy Bytes)
1. Explore Some of 200 Events at Boston Harborfest.
This Fourth of July Festival runs July 1 through July 5 and showcases our colonial and maritime heritage. With over 200 events planned in Boston’s City Hall Plaza and waterfront (concerts, tours, Naval ship visits and even a chowder fest!) you are sure to find your family’s favorite. Use this link for a full schedule of Harborfest.
2. Try to Find a Spot during Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular. July 3rd and 4th, Boston’s Charles River Esplanade.
This is Maestro Keith Lockhart’s 20th anniversary as conductor of both the Pops and the July 4 concert (8:30pm-10:30pm). This year the Pops are joined by Broadway performer Michael Cavanaugh; American Idol finalist Melinda Doolittle; Boston-based quartet, the Sons of Serendip; the Boston Crusaders drum and bugle corps; gospel singer and The Voice contestant Michelle Brooks-Thompson, and the USO Show Troupe.
The Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular will of course conclude with a 21-minute pyrotechnic extravaganza.
Check out event’s webpage for more information (including on what NOT to bring) and arrive early (before noon!) with your picnic blanket and sunscreen to find a good spot to sit (or stand!).
You may have much better luck with seating during The Pops’ July 3rd Dress Rehearsal Concert 8:30pm-10pm (no fireworks following July 3rd concert).
(Photo Credit: Evan and Lauren’s Cool Blog.)
3. Enjoy Free Admission and Festivities at Boston Children’s Museum on July 3rd – as part of Free Fun Fridays Project. There will be music, live animal presentations, and sidewalk games outside the Museum – as well as the “usual” family friendly exhibits inside the Museum.
In the BERKSHIRES (approximately a 2-hour drive from Boston in Western Massachusetts)
4. Connect your kids with the music at Tanglewood Family Concert on July 4th in Ozawa Hall.
This special performance designed for kids ages 3-8 and their families is called A Brass Carnival and is featuring members of the Boston Symphony Orchestra’s brass section and an Instrumental Playground for young concert goers. Instrument Playground will begin at 9:30 a.m. with the concert to take place at 11 a.m. (Free admission for kids 17 and under, $11 for adults. )Tickets can be purchased at the Tanglewood Box Office, online at www.tanglewood.org, or through SymphonyCharge at 888-266-1200.
There will be fireworks following the evening’s James Taylor concert (on July 4th); while that concert is sold out, you could still find a spot around the Stockbridge Bowl to watch the fireworks).
5. Check out Naumkeag Estate House and Gardens in Stockbridge, MA.
(Also part of Free Fun Friday fun on July 3rd,) Hours: 10am-8pm; special family friendly activities are planned for the day.
For a complete guide to the Berkshires’ 4th of July activities, check out this link from the Berkshire Visitors Bureau.
In RHODE ISLAND:
6. Attend the Nation’s Oldest Continuous 4th of July Celebration in Bristol.
We discovered this summer gem (about an hour drive South of Boston) and its famous East Bay Bike Path just last weekend.
Bristol’s Annual Fourth of July Celebration, (established in 1785), is held at Independence Park on Thames Street on Bristol Harbor. Here is a link to more information on Bristol’s Celebration. Bristol’s fireworks start around 9:30pm.
7. Another Spectacular Harbor fireworks awaits in Newport, Rhode Island (July 4th, at approximately 9:15 PM). More details here.
Here is the link to information on Massachusetts fireworks by town.
(And specifically on towns in Western Mass., use this link).
This post is part of the exciting collection of travel stories: #WeekendWanderlust at Brit and a Southerner and #TheWeeklyPostcard at Travel Notes and Beyond. Be sure to check them out for your travel ideas!