Fabulous Fourth of July celebrations in Massachusetts


By Sandi Barrett, Contributing Writer

The Boston Pops concert on the Esplanade is one of the city’s most popular Fourth of July traditions. Photo/Garrett A. Wollman
The Boston Pops concert on the Esplanade is one of the city’s most popular Independence Day traditions.
Photo/Garrett A. Wollman

REGION – As the birthplace of our nation, Massachusetts is steeped in patriotic pride. The Independence Day celebrations across the Commonwealth remind us how much we love and cherish our freedoms.

Listed below are a few of the many fireworks displays and celebrations where you can enjoy some patriotic festivities. It’s time to grab your American flag and celebrate July Fourth.

Boston Harborfest and the Boston Pops Concert

Boston Harborfest is a weekend-long celebration with a diverse selection of activities beginning Friday, July 1 and culminating on Monday, July 4 with the Boston Pops Concert and a spectacular fireworks show. If you love celebrating our capital city, you will love the energy in Boston during Harborfest. The downtown area comes alive with costumed historians, band concerts, assorted celebrations, and magnificent fireworks.

Below are the highlights, but for a detailed schedule visit BostonHarborfest.com.

Friday, July 1

  • 215th Army Band Concert, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., The Steps on Franklin Street above the MBTA’s Downtown Crossing Station
  • Middlesex County Volunteers Fifes and Drums, 1 to 4 p.m., throughout Downtown Crossing

Saturday, July 2

  • Classic Car Showcase, 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Summer Street, Downtown Crossing
  • Chowderfest, noon to 2 p.m., Downtown Crossing
  • Pre-fireworks Concert, 6 to 9 p.m., Christopher Columbus Park
  • Parade of Lights, 8 to 9:30 p.m., Boston Inner Harbor, Long Wharf
  • Harborfest Fireworks, 9 to 9:45 p.m., launched from a barge – Boston Inner Harbor, Long Wharf

Sunday, July 3

  • Roaming performers, historical re-enactors, and musicians, noon to 8 p.m., Downtown Crossing
  • Opera Guy & Friends, 4 to 6 p.m., the steps on Franklin Street above the MBTA’s Downtown Crossing Station

Monday, July 4

  • Parade, 9 to 10 a.m., the short parade marches from City Hall Plaza to the Granary Burial Ground and the Old Statehouse for a reading of the Declaration of Independence.
  • Boston Pops Concert and Fireworks, 7 to 11 p.m., the Esplanade

Star Spangled Springfield

What goes great with fireworks? A jet-fueled flyover. For the 2022 celebration, the 104th Fighter Wing of the Massachusetts Air National Guard will make the ground shake with their flyover spectacle.

Fun, family-friendly activities to amp up the festive mood lead up to the fireworks display. Springfield has been producing its Fourth of July celebration since 1991.

Monday, July 4

  • Festivities, 6 to 10 p.m., Riverfront Park
  • Fireworks, 9:30 p.m., display from Memorial Bridge

Nantucket Independence Day Celebration

If you want to experience an island-style Independence Day, sail over to Nantucket for a seaside Fourth of July extravaganza. In addition to the events below, there is lots of extra fun and frivolity. Morning beach activities for the kids is a great way to have fun and soak up some sunshine. When you are wandering around town, explore the farmers’ market on Cambridge Street, food trucks on Federal Street, and the entrepreneurs showcase at the Athenaeum Garden on India Street.

Monday, July 4

  • Reading of the Declaration of Independence, 10 a.m., Unitarian Church (Orange Street) 
  • “Water Contest” between the Nantucket Fire Department and the Boynton Lane Reserves, noon, Main Street
  • Fireworks, 9 to 9:25 p.m., display from a barge off Jetties Beach

Salem Celebrates July 4 on July 2

Historic Salem is perfect for a Fourth of July weekend getaway since its fireworks display is Saturday night. You can visit all the interesting spots around town, like the Salem Witch Museum, The House of Seven Gables, and other sorcerer remembrances and then enjoy an Independence Day fireworks display.

Saturday, July 2

  • Hillyer Festival Orchestra, 4 to 10 p.m., Salem Maritime National Historic Site, Derby Wharf
  • Fireworks display launched over Salem Harbor

July 4 Plymouth

It doesn’t get more historic than Plymouth. You can enjoy the festivities, visit The Rock, wander the Plimoth Patuxet Museums, or explore the Mayflower II.

Monday, July 4

  • 7th Annual 4th of July 5K, 8:15 a.m., Stephens Field, online registration available at: southshorerace.com/7th-annual-4th-of-july-5k—july-4-2022.html
  • 4th of July Parade, 9 a.m. from Cordage Park, 10 Cordage Park Circle (NEW LOCATION)
  • Concert, 7 p.m., DCR Pilgrim Memorial State Park
  • Fireworks, 9 p.m. (dusk), DCR Pilgrim Memorial State Park

The annual celebration of our hard-fought independence reminds us how fortunate we are to have the freedom of choice. This Independence Day, when you encounter an armed forces service member or veteran, greet them with a smile and a hearty thank you. They are the keepers of our freedom.



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