July 4 Fireworks

When it comes to the 4th of July, there are the basics: grilling burgers, wearing shorts, drinking … lemonade. As you don your red, white and blue feel free to stick to these classic festivities and enjoy the simple pleasures of being an American.

We at the Clog have been eagerly awaiting this fabulous day off, and have assembled a list of ways to spend the 4th. read more »


Have you not quite gotten around to planning a rad barbecue for the upcoming patriotic weekend? Never fear, there are plenty of other celebrations going on. Here’s a guide to the ones the Clog could track down: read more »

4th-posterYou might have thought Berkeley routinely boycotts July 4, since it’s like, a patriotic holiday that could probably somehow be construed as mildly politically incorrect or less than totally inclusive or whatever, but–much to our delighted SoCal summer transplant’s surprise–it does not. Apparently, the city puts on a series of  pretty Berkeley-ish events (Zydeco and belly dancing, anyone?) every year at the Berkeley Marina, which culminates in a fireworks display over the bay at night.

So whether you actually make the trip over there to get the full earsplitting experience, or you enjoy the rockets’ red glare from somewhere with a bay view and a couple of Natty Lights (or some other equally patriotic beverage), you can count on Berkeley to make July 4 at least a little bit special.

And just in case thinking about the potential detrimental effects  fireworks might have on “lost and frightened animals” was keeping you up at night, toss and turn no more. The city of Berkeley was all over it. In 2007.  Yes, you read that right. They were, indeed, considering a “Lazer light show” instead of fireworks.

4th of July Berkeley Marina [Website]

While this Clogger always enjoys the food and fireworks in Oakland’s Jack London Square, some might find other East Bay locations preferable for this year’s Most American Holiday.


This year, the city will start Marina celebrations at noon, which will include a city-sponsored fireworks show at 9:30 p.m. Other goodies to look forward to are a complete ban on fireworks, which probably includes snakes (we all saw that South Park episode) due to fire hazard, absolutely no alcohol and a 10 p.m. ending.

But on the bright side, there will also be arts-and-crafts as well as free sailboat and dragonboat rides. Whee!


Here you will find such celebrations as the Patriotic Picnic and Stereopticon Ice Cream Social (how classy!), the Oakland Municipal Band will perform at Lakeside Park, and this Clogger’s favorite–the Jack London Square 4th of July Fireworks Festival.

Image Source: erikogan under Creative Commons
Grab your flag: July Fourth events slated all around Bay Area [Contra Costa Times]

Happy firework day, all. Enjoy the festivities. Try not to get too drunk/sun-burnt. And don’t get shaded out by all the bomb sniffing dogs on BART.

If this is your first time experiencing a Bay Area summer, you’ll need a little guide to the best fireworks around. The Fourth of July is coming up, and we’re ready to see stuff exploding in the air (and hopefully not in our hands).

The SF Chron asked the people where they find the best watching site in their daily bit Two Cents. Most popular answer? It’s quite lame, we’ll tell you that.

In regards to the top choice, Gerard Cecchettini from San Francisco put it best:

bq. In front of your TV! No traffic problems, no parking problems, safe, relaxing, with goodies to eat at your fingertips, you can drink and not have to be dry because you’re not driving, and you can watch the celebration across the United States with your honey. Can’t beat that!

But the Clog poo-poos that idea. We liked the suggestions of some others, like that of Anh Chu from Oakland. She recommended watching fireworks “on the grass at the Oakland A’s coliseum … after celebrating the A’s with great fans.”

Or how about a typical Berkeley native’s response? Elaine Lee suggested:

bq. Indian Rock in Berkeley. When you climb to the top of it, you get a magnificent, unobstructed view of the Bay Area. Simultaneously you get this remarkable surrealistic sensation of viewing fireworks while sitting on a beautiful huge rhyolite volcanic rock that is over 11 millions years old.

What about our two cents? We say head over to the Berkeley Marina, which, according to the city of Berkeley’s website, will house a giant slide. No mention of any age restriction…

The fireworks start at 9:30 p.m., but show up before 7 p.m. if you’re driving and want a decent parking space. Festivities start at noon.

Or, of course, you could make your own fireworks … in bed.

Two Cents [SF Chron]
4TH OF JULY @ THE BERKELEY MARINA [City of Berkeley Community Calendar]

Well, the view from Tightwad Hill will probably be pretty shitty this year. The slow progress of the Jack London Square construction project has nixed the traditional July 4th fireworks display. Our condolences to lovers of shiny explosions. All the poor denizens of Oakland shall go fireworkless on their day of freedom. Somewhere in the hills, the Grinch of Oaktown (E 40’s evil twin?) is smiling and snickering.

City Council President Ignacio De La Fuente griped

bq. There aren’t many opportunities for our residents to enjoy the water for free.

Hmm. Something tell us that when De La Fuente said that, he really was thinking, “How the hell else can we make use of that mercury-ridden filth pool?!”

So why didn’t Oakland look ahead and plan an alternative celebration? We’re quite curious. And stunner shaded—but not in the good way.

No worries, though. Oakland has decided to merely postpone July 4th. Fireworks will be incorporated into a July 28th music festival at Middle Harbor Shoreline Park. Hopefully the bombs bursting in air will drown out the sound of George Washington’s ghost vomiting.

This brings us an interesting opportunity, though. Is it possible to make July 28th “International Hyphy Day”? Can we make up a story in which a martyred Mac Dre valiantly expels So Cal from our music scene in a momentous, high stakes, July 28th side-show? Just a thought.

Image Source: Daily Cal
Oakland July 4 fireworks cancelled [Inside Bay Area]