With patriotic parties aplenty, there will be no shortage of fireworks in San Diego this 4th of July. Here's our guide to the dazzling shows that will illuminate our skyline on Independence Day.
Big Bay Boom
9 p.m., San Diego Bay
San Diego’s largest 4th of July fireworks show, the Port of San Diego’s Big Bay Boom, returns to the waterfront this year. Fireworks will launch at 9 p.m. from four barges along the San Diego Bay. Prime viewing locations include Shelter Island; Harbor Island; North Embarcadero; Marina District; Seaport Village and South Embarcadero; Coronado Ferry Landing. From wherever you are watching, get there early with your lawn chairs and blankets. The Big Bay Boom draws a huge crowd year after year, typically between 300,000 to 500,000 spectators.
San Diego County Fair Fireworks
9 p.m., Del Mar Fairgrounds
The 2017 San Diego County Fair will end with a bang on July 4th with a lineup of patriotic events, including a 9 p.m. fireworks show launching from the west end of the racetrack, but visible throughout the fairgrounds. Fair, fireworks and fried food? That sounds like summer for sure.
Chula Vista 4th Fest
9 p.m., Chula Vista Elite Athlete Training Center
What could be more patriotic than watching Independence Day fireworks at the Chula Vista Elite Athlete Training Center (CVTC)? The center (2800 Olympic Parkway), where Olympic athletes train for the big games, will put on a fireworks show at 9 p.m. set to tunes from three radio stations: 91X; Magic 92.5; Z90.3. Launched from the athlete training grounds, the best spots to watch this show are at the CVTC and Mountain Hawk Park (1475 Lake Crest Dr.). The CVTC can accommodate a maximum of 5,000 spectators; parking at the visitor's entrance is limited to 400 cars and costs $10 per vehicle (cash only). The gates will open at 6 p.m. Free parking is available at the New Hope Community Church (2720 Olympic Parkway) adjacent to the center.
July 4th in Coronado
9 p.m., Coronado Island
Coronado Island will celebrate Independence Day with a host of fun events including a 10 a.m. parade down Orange Avenue, a 2 p.m. parachute drop, a 4 p.m. concert at Spreckels Park and, of course, fireworks, which start at 9 p.m. over Glorietta Bay. KYXY 96.5 will provide the patriotic tunes; good spots for viewing the show include the golf course of Stingray Point.
Escondido’s Independence Day Festival & Fireworks
9 p.m., California Center for the Arts Escondido
Head to the Great Green at the California Center for the Arts Escondido (340 N. Escondido Blvd.) for the 54th annual Independence Day Festival & Fireworks, an event that typically draws about 20,000 attendees. The fun starts at 4 p.m. with lots of live music and entertainment, food vendors, and activities and games for the kids. Camp Pendleton’s 1st Marine Division Band will perform, too, followed by fireworks at 9 p.m.
Ocean Beach Fireworks
9 p.m., Ocean Beach Pier
Ocean Beach will celebrate July 4th with dazzling fireworks off the OB Pier, which begins at 9 p.m. -- OB time. Free parking, though limited, is available at the Main Beach Lot and the Pier Parking Lot. The show will be synced to songs from KyXy 96.5. In year’s past, the Ocean Beach July 4th celebration also included a “marshmallow war, ” but the sticky mess left behind – and a whole lot of controversy – led to the end of that. Now, attendees are free to eat marshmallows, just not throw them.
Ken Grody Ford 4th of July Camp Pendleton Beach Bash
9 p.m., Del Mar Beach Resort at Camp Pendleton
This beach bash at Camp Pendleton includes a DJ, activities for kids, food trucks, prizes, a “Margaritaville” area and tribute to our U.S. military heroes on this special day of freedom.
The 4th of July at La Jolla Cove
9 p.m., Ellen Browning Scripps Park
Enjoy friends, family, freedom, and fireworks at La Jolla Cove on the Fourth. Fireworks start at 9 p.m. at Ellen Browning Scripps Memorial Park.
Santee Salutes Fireworks Show
9 p.m., Town Center Community Park East
Santee Salutes – a festival featuring live music, a patriotic ceremony, food and family-friendly fun at Town Center Community Park (550 Park Center Dr.) – will culminate with a 4th of July fireworks display at 9 p.m. The event is free; parking is $5 per car. The party at the park starts at 2:30 p.m.
El Cajon Fireworks
9 p.m., Kennedy Park
El Cajon’s July 4th fireworks are set for 9 p.m. at Kennedy Park (1675 E. Madison Ave.). Get there early, spread out a blanket and enjoy food vendors, games, prizes, kiddie train rides and more at the park. The 4th of July event starts at 1 p.m.; live music starts at 3 p.m.
Lake Murray Fireworks Show
9 p.m., Lake Murray in La Mesa
After several years on hiatus, La Mesa’s Fourth of July fireworks show returns to Lake Murray (5540 Kiowa Dr.). The all-day event starts at 11 a.m. with a long lineup of live performances, plus food and activities; the fireworks go on at 9 p.m. The show is funded through donations, managed by the Lake Murray Fireworks Committee.
National City 4th of July Carnival Fireworks
9 p.m., Kimball Park
National City’s multi-day July 4th carnival at Kimball Park (12th Street and D Avenue) wraps with a fireworks show at 9 p.m. on Independence Day. The fun starts at 12 p.m. at the park. The annual carnival draws a huge crowd; the National City Police Department advises motorists to avoid using D Avenue from 12th to 16th streets until the event is over.
San Marcos Fireworks
9 p.m., Bradley Park
Bradley Park (465 S. Rancho Santa Fe Rd.) in San Marcos will roll out the red, white and blue for “Celebrate Freedom: A Fireworks Extravaganza,” at 9 p.m. – a show entirely funded by donations from citizens and businesses in the community. Before the fireworks fly, enjoy live music – including a performance by Liquid Blue at 6 p.m., plus carnival games, bounce-houses, nd food vendors.
Mira Mesa Fireworks
9 p.m., Mira Mesa High School
Following an all-day July 4th celebration that includes a parade and family-friendly fun in the park, take in the colorful Scripps Mesa Fireworks show at Mira Mesa High School (10510 Reagan Rd.). Bring a blanket and chairs and get there early.
9 p.m., Poway High School
Fireworks will light the sky over Poway High School’s (15500 Espola Rd.) stadium after the community’s all-day Old-Fashioned 4th of July Celebration at Old Poway Park. The gates open at 6 p.m. so get there early to snag a spot and enjoy games, activities and a DJ spinning tunes. This event costs $5 per person at the gate; kids 11 and under get in free.
9 p.m., Brengle Terrace Park
Vista’s fireworks show goes down at 9 p.m. from the Moonlight Amphitheatre in Brengle Terrace Park (1200 Vale Terrace Dr.). Admission to the amphitheatre is $5 per person; children 5 and under and active and retired military (and their families) get in free. Parking in the park is $15 per car.
9 p.m., Olive Peirce Middle School
Ramona’s fireworks go down at 9 p.m. at Olive Peirce Middle School (1521 Hanson Ln.). The Ramona Rotary group has been busy collecting donations for this show and so far, so good.
Red, White & Boom! LEGOLand Fireworks
8:30 p.m., LEGOLAND California Resort
LEGOLAND hosts this star-spangled Red, White & Boom! Party, which runs from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m., with fireworks set for 8:30 p.m. Prime viewing spots will be designated around the amusement park. Before fireworks, patrons can enjoy picnic-style games like burlap sack races and LEGO building challenges for the whole family. Activities are included with paid admission into the park.
Oceanside Fireworks – July 3rd
9 p.m., Rancho Del Oro Blvd. between Mesa Dr. & Oceanside Blvd.
Oceanside will ring in the 4th a day early – on Monday, July 3 – with its fireworks display at 9 p.m. staged Rancho Del Oro Boulevard between Mesa Drive & Oceanside Boulevard. The family-friendly event includes music and food trucks, too.