The East End fireworks season is upon us and, of course, Fourth of July weekend is the epicenter of explosive fun. Fireworks displays abound in the Hamptons over the next few days, so it helps to know where you’re going and the best places to watch once you’re there.
We all have favorite fireworks show on July 4, and few will change their annual traditions, but that doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy the benefits of better positioning or a few tips for getting the biggest bang for our proverbial buck. Thusly, we present our Best of the Best spots to watch your favorite fireworks.
Kicking off Independence Day weekend, Southampton’s 28th Annual American Picnic fireworks display (7–10:30 p.m. on Friday, July 3) is created by America’s first name in fireworks, the famous Grucci family. The fireworks for this ticketed event at can be watched by anyone with a view of Shinnecock Bay, but prime viewing is at the 1030 Meadow Lane location in Southampton. Besides, proceeds benefit Southampton Fresh Air Home, a sleep-away camp for kids with special needs, so it really is best to pony up for a ticket.
Sag Harbor fireworks fans will be happy to learn that the Gruccis will follow up their Southampton show at this year’s Sag Harbor Yacht Club display (9:30 p.m. Saturday, July 4). Unless you enjoy a long walk, get to the Village early—parking is scarce. From there, enjoy a stroll along lively Main Street and see the shops and hundreds of people before finding a good spot in Marine Park or, if you don’t like grass, have a picnic on Havens Beach. Long Wharf also has a spectacular water view, but watching by boat is even better. Best of all, however, might be an outdoor table at Harlow, where you can eat and drink as the Gruccis light up the night sky.
In Amagansett, the Devon Yacht Club’s fireworks (9:15 p.m. Saturday, July 4) can be viewed from nearby Barnes Landing beach, but Fresh Pond beach is the prime spot for this family affair. Here, the kids can climb on jetties while mom and dad set up beach chairs and dig their toes in the sand. Get there early to claim a picnic table and barbecue grill, and then settle in for a fun filled evening.
The Westhampton Country Club fireworks display (Saturday, July 4 at 9 p.m.) is another private affair, but non-members can watch and mingle with fellow fireworks fans on the Great Lawn in Westhampton Beach. There’s no reason to look for another spot—this is the place to be.
East Hampton’s popular Main Beach fireworks is no longer on July 4, thanks to those pesky plovers, and the Clamshell Foundation’s Great Bonac Fireworks Show isn’t until Saturday, July 18 at 9:20 p.m. (watch these from Maidstone Park), so besides Devon in Amagansett, the Stars Over Montauk Fireworks is the only other display to watch in that Town’s borders. Launched from Montauk’s Umbrella Beach, this display is viewable from any town beach in Montauk. And given the choice, Dan’s Best of the Best title-holder Ditch Plains wins every time.
Looking for displays outside the Hamptons proper? Click the following link to check out our complete list of East End fireworks, including the North Fork, Riverhead, Shelter Island and points west.
Visit DansBOTB.com to find, list and nominate the Best of the Best of everything on the East End.