This year, the 4th July will fall on a Furzeday and celebrations around the event will generally closely involve family events including BBQ’s, picnics, baseball games, parades, music concerts and of course most will include FIREWORKS.

Celebrations of the Independence of the US from Great Britain did not really gain much popularity until some 15-20 years later. But, as there was still discord within the ranks of those who drew up the Declaration of Independence back in 1776 which was to continue throughout the Civil War. The Democratic-Republicans supported Thomas Jefferson and the wording of the DOI but, opposing factions, including the Federalist Party, though it was too French and very anti-British. By 1812, following the Civil War, the Federalist party had all but gone and the deaths on 4th July 1826 of Thomas Jefferson and John Adams re-enforced the idea of celebrating Independence Day as a national holiday.

Today, Independence Day is commemorated across the states with all manner of events. Over in Los Angeles, the 4th July event is a seasonal highlight back with family and child-friendly pursuits.

Each City has their own spin on what the locals will best enjoy. For example, in downtown LA, there is a HUGE block party in Grand Park featuring stacks of food, drink, live music and of course fabulous fireworks – even dogs are permitted to go!

Of course, being American, each City/State/Town likes to think that theirs is the biggest event with the best firework display, however, there are some which are categorized as super events due to the number of people who attend:


This 25-minute firework event includes over 6000 explosions. Macy’s have been funding the event since 1976 when the US celebrated the bicentennial of the signing of the DOI. For over 30-years, Pyro Spectaculars by Souza (one of the first Italian firework families) have carefully positioned 5-barges on the Hudson River and let rip with every effect imaginable. This event is viewed by almost 3 million people live and a further 10 million-plus on TV or online media.


President Trump has gone all out on this one. More than 70,000 people gather for the fireworks in the nation’s capital to watch the incredible display over the Washington Monument annually. This is an all-day event which of course includes parades, festivals, live music and as night falls, FIREWORKS. The display is fired and choreographed by the pro-team from Garden State Fireworks which was established in 1890.


This event is also the responsibility of firework supremo’s Pyro Spectacular by Souza. The fireworks can be viewed from a huge number of locations around San Diego Bay in California and the pyro is carefully set up on 4 barges within the Bay area. 50,000 spectators regularly line the area so be prepared. Of course, the fireworks are not due to begin until nightfall which will be around 9pm so there is plenty of time to take in the sights and visit Legoland or Seaworld during the daytime, keeping the whole of the family happy.


Philadelphia is seen as the birthplace of the USA as this was where the DOI was signed on 2nd August 1776. The City is known to be a brilliant family-friendly place and the 4th July events reflect this. There will be outdoor screenings of some brilliant movies like ‘Rocky’, ‘Rogue One – A Star Wars Movie, and the delightful Despicable Me which will be brilliant for the family or indeed visits to local Museums at no cost. The people of Philadelphia are also rather keen on what is essentially a ‘sub’ roll called a Hoagie. These are a delicious sandwich which may contain either hot or cold meats with salads and cheeses.  Of course, the best known of them is the ‘Philly Cheese Steak’ which has layers of super-thin sandwich steaks with onions and melted cheese over (yeah baby ….).

Philly has held fireworks for over 100 years. The pyro in Philadelphia is the responsibility of Pyrotechnico who annually thrill the 500,000 spectators with their 18- minute display over the Philadelphia Museum of Art from 4 barges. Here in Philadelphia, a 3-day festival accompanies the 4th July celebrations so there is plenty to do if you wish to make a longer trip of it.


This has been running for 43 years and culminates in a display fired over the Charles River. The pyro is the responsibility of another of the original Italian Firework families; Fireworks by Grucci. This team won international acclaim back on NYE 2013 when they provided the fireworks and technical expertise to enable the UAE to achieve a Guinness World Record for the biggest firework display ever with 479,651 fireworks. This family has been in the business since 1850 and now the company employs the 6th generation with no sign of their love of pyro ebbing away. The Boston Pops is a fantastic orchestral concert which culminates in a huge 23-minute firework display following a free concert which is on a first-come-first-served basis.

With a population in the USA of 325 million, they will also eat and drink their way through a staggering amount of food and beverages for their private events, BBQ’s and picnics:

  • $388 million on steaks and beef products
  • $389 million on chicken
  • $37 million on corn on the cob
  • $114 million on salads/slaws and potato salads
  • $25 million on bratwurst for those hot-dogs
  • $318 million on crisps (chips over there)
  • $100 million on sauces, marinades and condiments
  • $2.9 BILLION on alcohol

Unfortunately, here in the UK, we do not celebrate the event other than a very select smattering of food outlets and restaurants showing their support with ‘American themed’ foods.

Wherever you are, we would like to say HAPPY 4TH JULY 🙂




The UK fireworks were of course beautiful but how did the rest of them do? Of course, being in the Northern Hemisphere and a good 12 hours plus behind in reaching the magical midnight hour, we thought you might enjoy a bit of a run down of some of the best and worst fireworks for New Year from the rest of the World.

Here is a quick look around the world as it happened:

NEW ZEALAND – The first up of the big display specialists is usually New Zealand. The launch site for the majority of their pyro is from the iconic Sky Tower which this year celebrates its 20th anniversary. The display was under the control of 6 specialist pyrotechnicians who took 350 hours to set up on site. There were 3000 shots fired during the 6 minute show and a really pretty laser countdown but I have seen many awesome displays both from around the world and of course closer to home for celebrations but before 30,000 visitors, it was, in my opinion a little lacklustre.

AUSTRALIA – There was a countdown in the centre of the bridge which was truly captivating, and the fireworks were nothing short of breath-taking. Clean, crisp, precise and lots and lots of pyro going up with some MASSIVE ghost shells.

Although the firing sites were widely spread (bearing in mind that Sydney Harbour is 55km squared) there was still a level of symmetry that some of the other countries could learn a thing or two from. Lengthy, beautiful and above all a magical welcome to 2018 from Australia.

SOUTH KOREA – This beautiful little country had just a small smattering of pyrotechnics, launched from the Lotte World Tower, the 5th tallest building in the world.

NORTH KOREA – Now to the other end of the spectrum, the fireworks for the capital Pyongyang were very good indeed. This has to be one of the most talked about countries in the World at the moment and the leader is nothing short of crackers but the fireworks provided some much needed joy for the gathered crowds and were surprisingly understated, precise and actually very pretty indeed.

HONG KONG – The display in Victoria Harbour is sponsored by the Hong Kong tourism board and of course being the home of fireworks great things were expected. It started out as a number have this year with as laser show. When the midnight hour struck, there was a rousing sing along to auld lang syne.

The pyrotechnics were beautiful and at the outset all was precise and symmetrical but after a while it was just pure mayhem with all manner of effects being launched randomly at the same time. It was reported that the fireworks were the responsibility of a European firework specialist which appeared a little odd, given the location. Whilst it most certainly brought the new year in with a huge bang, it was not uniform enough for my personal taste so it is not amongst my favourites.

BANGLADESH – Given the economy of the country, nationally sponsored fireworks are quite probably very low on the list but Bangladeshi’s have a never say die attitude. New Years eve was an event which displayed their spirit and warm appreciation as they set off what looked like a couple of dozen of our big rockets to loud and rapturous applause.

INDIA – The site for the New Year celebrations in India was the All India War Memorial (AKA India Gate), built in memory of all the Indian soldiers who laid down their lives in WW1.

The display started with a laser show projected onto the facia of the memorial and showed images of their sacred animals, the mountains and of course all the beautiful colours of India. The familiar sound of Dholi drums can be heard throughout along with spontaneous applause. Titanium salutes followed by slow falling bright white comets lit up the gate before huge shell bursts filled the skies with a crescendo of explosions – lovely!

MOSCOW – There are few prettier places to see than Moscow’s Red Square and the stunning St Basils Cathedral. The fireworks were beautiful and clearly from the sound of the partying and merrymaking, a good night was had by one and all. Absolutely stunning shell breaks but they were only launching for around 5 minutes but the end brocades of falling golden willows was awesome and no smoke!

GERMANY – The site for the celebrations over in Germany was the infamous Brandenburg Gate in Berlin. The gate has seen its fair share of worrisome historical events as well as the scene of massive change and hope following the unification of Germany in 1989. Today, the Brandenburg Gate is seen as the centre of peace and unity of the people of Germany and Europe.

The pyro was rich and varied and most certainly more impressive than some of the bigger countries with more than just the usual spherical shell breaks making for an entertaining display. The site was easy enough as it is at the bottom of a straight avenue and the structure of course, square which lends itself better to achieving a beauty and symmetry difficult in other countries. Well done Germany – lovely display.

A great start to 2018 and a very Happy New Year to everyone.



Fancy something other than the norm to let the new year in 2018?

Here at epic fireworks we have had a look around and handpicked what we think maybe some of the best places and events to visit this to let your new year start off with a bang!

We know we said somewhere different, but we are British after all and loyalty starts at home and all that; London continues to draw in tens of thousands of people with more and more areas being opened each year.

Thousands can now gather in different viewpoints around the city and along the Thames to listen for the iconic BIG Ben Bells and perhaps sneak in a quick selfie then stand back in awe of the one of the largest fireworks display in the World spread along the Thames, Big Ben and the London Eye all getting a piece of the action. The final batch of tickets is due to go on sale during the first week of December so if you are still looking for some, keep vigilant as they will be available for long.

With Sydney been the first of the major cities to let the new year in and as it is considered to be one of the best they must make sure that every year tops the last, as they know that majority of the world will be watching them.

This year they are putting on some pre-show entertainment starting at 6pm on near the waterside with a tugboat delivering some fantastic water displays and after this a welcoming ceremony for all to see.

The first of the two fireworks display’s takes place at 9pm for all the families and people with young children not to miss out on the evening. Then the main event begins with the iconic opera house and Sydney harbour bridge as the backdrop to over 5000 different effects colours and sounds. This waterside extravaganza is not to be missed and is definitely one on the bucket list.

Known for being the city that never sleeps; this has never been truer than on New Year’s Eve. All the Las Vegas strip is opened, and the biggest open-air party can begin with thousands of locals and holidaymakers wandering around celebrating the new year. If you want to get in out of the cold, there are various hotels that offer places, but these do start closing the doors at 11pm so plan ahead to ensure that you get a place.

On the stroke of midnight, over 80 thousand different fireworks are released into the skyline, all beautifully choreographed to music providing a one of a kind display for all to see.

NYE is the biggest event to happen in Rio after the carnival so there are plenty of things to do.

Get the party started early and dance along to some of the many live bands; join the tradition of casting flowers into the sea to honour the goddess Yemanja or simply join in the revelry. Everyone wears white as this said to bring good luck to them in the new coming year.
Catch a glimpse of the mile upon mile of barges linked on the water with pyrotechnics all ready for the clock to stroke 12. This is when everyone heads down to the Copacabana beach to take in the hundreds of colourful fireworks lighting up the skies above like a giant rainbow before the after party then starts until sunrise for most.

Dubai is a beautiful and proud nation and they have made massive endeavors in the past to offer up the world’s largest pyrotechnic display from the world’s tallest building. Whether it is the fireworks shooting from the top of the Burj Khalifa or over to the annual display at the Palm Jumeirah all the celebrations in Dubai are beautiful, rich and stylish with beautiful balls or fantastic rooftop restaurant views way up at level 43. You can still, however, head on down to downtown Dubai to the waterfront fountains where you can still get a glimpse of the amazing firework display.

How about taking in your fireworks display from a different place completely; above the famous cascades of the waters of Niagara Fall. But if that is not what you fancy they still have plenty going off in and around Queen Victoria park with fun for all the family. All the events are completely free and are going off all the way through December to the build-up of the big event the festival of lights to bring the new year in with a big bang.

The iconic Scottish capital’s castle is the backdrop to the main display along with the many of the renowned Hogmanay celebrations that also take place currently; there are light processions, street parties and live music and bands so plenty to do in and around the City of Edinburgh before the midnight bells strike and the spectacular fireworks surround the cold night skies and the after parties and celebrations begin.

One of the biggest street parties in Europe in celebrated between Brandenburg gate and Victoria column in Berlin. Each year millions of people descend on the city to join in the al fresco festivities entertained by with live bands, laser shows and DJs as well as an abundance of food and drink concessions to add to the atmosphere. The main fireworks event is a mixture of homemade firework demo’s and full on displays and the mixture of the two creates a one off spectacular vision of colour and sound.

Even at new year the most romantic City in the World appears to put a romantic spin on its celebrations to welcome the New Year in. The myriad of coloured lasers and pyrotechnics illuminating the top of Notre Dame Cathedral to the channels of the picturesque River Seine there is light all around. The best shows of all are on the streets of the 8th arrondissement where the displays are judged in order to win the right to the fireworks displays for the following year’s Bastille day in the city.

Wherever you choose to spend your New Year, whether it is over in Las Vegas or ‘Skeg Vegas’ have a great time from all at Epic Fireworks.