Queens will celebrate Independence Day early with big fireworks shows in Bayside & Astoria

Fireworks over Astoria
Photo by Josef Pinlac

The rockets’ red glare and bombs bursting in air will light up the skies over Queens next week as the borough begins celebrating Independence Day.

Thousands will gather at Fort Totten Park on Wednesday night, June 27, for an early July 4 celebration hosted by the Bayside Historical Society.

The festivities will get underway at 6 p.m. with a free concert on the parade grounds inside Fort Totten. The musical lineup includes Michelle Marie Rock Camp from 6 to 6:40 p.m.; Chicken Head Rocks from 7 to 7:45 p.m.; and Phil Costa & the Something Special Big Band from 8 to 9 p.m.

Then, at 9:15 p.m., Grucci Fireworks will set off a grand fireworks extravaganza sure to awe spectators of all ages.

There’s no assigned seating at the Fort Totten parade grounds, so get there early (admittance begins at 5 p.m.) and bring blankets or lawn chairs with you. Food vendors will be on site, but you can also bring your own food and beverages (all bags, coolers and backpacks will be inspected upon entering the park).

Councilman Paul Vallone, Queens Borough President Melinda Katz and Dime Community Bank are sponsoring the Bayside festivities. Visit baysidehistorical.org for more details.

If you can’t make it to Bayside on Wednesday night (or just want to see more fireworks), then head over to Astoria Park on Thursday night, June 28, for the 2018 Independence Day celebration hosted by the Central Astoria Local Development Corporation.

The fun begins at 7:30 p.m. on the Great Lawn at Astoria Park, on Shore Boulevard between the Hell Gate Bridge and Astoria Pool, with a special performance from the Patriot Brass Ensemble. Then, soon after the sunsets, Grucci Fireworks will light up the summer skies with a fireworks extravaganza.

As with the Fort Totten fireworks show, those heading to Astoria Park should bring blankets and lawn chairs with them. Sponsors of the extravaganza include Councilmen Costa Constantinides and Jimmy Van Bramer, NRG, Kaufman Astoria Studios, Thomas M. Quinn & Sons Funeral Home, Atlantic Bank, Dunkin’ Donuts, Mount Sinai Queens, NYC Ferry, The Durst Organization and BNB Bank.

Visit centralastoria.nyc or call 718-728-7820 for more information.

Of course, the granddaddy of all Independence Day fireworks shows will take place at about 9 p.m. on Wednesday night, July 4, with the Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks Extravaganza. As in past years, Long Island City’s Gantry Plaza State Park is one of the most popular places in the city to view the pyrotechnics. If you’re planning on going, get their early and use public transit.

The NYPD reminds everyone that the sale, possession or personal use of fireworks in New York City is illegal, and punishable by a fine and/or jail time. Residents should call 911 if they witness fireworks being illegally used or call 311 if they have information about someone selling fireworks.

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