POP Goes the 4th!

Boston Harborfest
Esplanade – DCR Hatch Shell & various locations throughout Boston
Concert & Fireworks: 7 p.m.
Boston Harborfest: 9 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.
Event Prices Vary
617-266-1492 (Boston Symphony Orchestra)
617-227-1528 (Boston Harborfest)


It’s time, once again, to celebrate the Fourth of July, and Boston is throwing a big party. Don’t get caught in the crowd. What you need is a plan. Before you do anything, be sure to claim your spot on the Esplanade for the fireworks display early as the city is expecting up to 900,000 spectators this year. Then you’ll be free to hit the many Boston Harborfest events without fear of missing the main event.

Celebrate America’s roots with a trip back to the days of our founding fathers. Make a stop at the Old State House for a dramatic reading of the Declaration of Independence from the very balcony it was first recited on July 18, 1776. Or you can relive the fiery debate that sparked the Boston Tea Party. Then take a trip down to the waterfront to watch as “Old Ironsides” completes its annual turn-around and 21-gun salute. Visitors can also take in a free afternoon concert as the Dan Lawson Band rocks City Hall Plaza with bluesy tunes.

And, if walking the hot city streets gets to you, hop aboard one of Boston’s yachts for a smooth ride around Boston Harbor or get on a Mississippi style riverboat for a trip down the Charles. Enjoy a mimosa and a tall stack of blueberry pancakes on one of the available brunch cruises or take part in a traditional Fourth of July cookout on Boston’s historic Liberty Clipper, a replica of the schooners used by fishermen in the 1800’s. Later in the evening, a number of vessels will embark on exciting fireworks cruises. The boats will take you out on the water for arguably the best view of the annual fireworks spectacular.

Round out an historic day with the annual Boston Pops Fireworks Spectacular, hosted for the second time by Craig Ferguson of the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson. This years’ salute will include a performance by country superstars Rascal Flatts, accompanied by the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra. 

After the show is over, curl up on a blanket as the Boston skyline is illuminated in red, white, and blue. The Boston POPS will take over the stage with their rendition of the ‘1812 Overture,’ filling the night air with patriotic tunes as the fireworks pop overhead.