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Raleigh plans two fireworks shows for Fourth

Posted June 5, 2013

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— Raleigh has been working on a revised plan for its Independence Day celebration since a move to downtown for "The Works!" last year was widely panned.

For 2013, the city will shoot off fireworks twice, Mayor Nancy McFarlane said Wednesday. A 9:15 p.m. display will be visible from anywhere on Fayetteville Street, and a 10:15 p.m. display will be visible from inside Red Hat Amphitheater and west of Fayetteville Street.

"Starting at about 6 o'clock, there will be free concerts in the amphitheater," McFarlane said. Three bands will perform.

While the 2012 event drew some 50,000 people downtown, those in attendance complained that the fireworks were not high enough to see over the buildings and that traffic and parking created hassles.

McFarlane said she heard and understood those complaints. By Wednesday morning the city had tested various launch sites to make sure this year's fireworks display would be more visible. The staggered schedule should also ease congestion, since not everyone will be leaving downtown at once, she said.

"It's going to be a great, great Fourth of July," she concluded.

Raleigh Mayor Nancy McFarlane Concert, dual displays to mark Fourth in Raleigh


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  • Buddy1 Jun 6, 2013

    torchhappysean - 'Go to the corner of Fayetteville St. and Davie St... Start walking east down Davie St.... If you go more than say 4 blocks I do believe you will start getting a very uncomfortable feeling about the "wonderful" neighborhood you will end up in..'

    Okay, for arguments sake let's say that the area down E. Davie can be construed as sketchy (I don't agree but whatevs). If that is the case then why would you go there? It's not like there is any retail or bars or galleries or restaurants and it sure doesn't detract from the DTR experience?

  • sunneyone2 Jun 6, 2013

    If you're going to pay for two, why not have one downtown and another at the fairgrounds, which is IN THE CITY LIMITS, to accommodate ALL of the citizens of Raleigh.

    My support of having the display at the fairgrounds has nothing to do with my personal politics and everything to do with the fact that you don't shoot off FIRE HAZARDS over buildings when you have an open space to shoot them over. I love downtown and fully support First Night and other festivals being downtown, but not fireworks.

  • torchhappysean Jun 6, 2013

    Yep.. You can tell which posters live downtown and which don't. To those who think Downtown is a "great" spot to bring families let me suggest this... Go to the corner of Fayetteville St. and Davie St... Start walking east down Davie St.... If you go more than say 4 blocks I do believe you will start getting a very uncomfortable feeling about the "wonderful" neighborhood you will end up in..

  • Jimmytwotimes Jun 6, 2013


    No way, this is a good plan they have now. little fireworks over fayettville street, than an hour later the big ones from Red hat. Much better than parking on blue ridge rd and sitting in traffic for hours.

  • Jimmytwotimes Jun 6, 2013

    For those of you who don't know where to park. LOL, try one of the many several story parking decks that never fill up in any event and are usually free. everything is within a mile walk from any deck, stop whining.

  • cynda-ur-way Jun 6, 2013

    I love that just by living ITB Raleigh my whole social status has supposedly been elevated. If downtown is the only place I can appreciate good wine and great food then I must have picked the right place according to some of the posters. Funny! I however do have issue with the firework display . I was very excited about the new location last year. But I have to admit it was an epic fail. I am going to give them a chance to change that this year. You could not hardly see the fireworks at all and traffic was not directed well. I agree shooting them higher would help a lot.

  • Jimmytwotimes Jun 6, 2013

    All you whiners get a life. This is awesome news, we now have a downtown concert venue with bands playing on the 4th and two firework shows. gonna be awesome. money well spent, this is what americas about on the 4th of July.

  • dwntwnboy2 Jun 6, 2013

    "for the convention center WE THE PEOPLE said WE DID NOT WANT on a referendum, yet Meeker built it anyway, the man is a disgrace"- wow- guess you never went downtown before Meeker became mayor. It SUCKED!! Now there is nightlife, dining, an amphtitheatre, expanded arts spaces at Memorial Aud., Fayetteville street is a STREET again, property values are up, the Convention Center that was BADLY needed was built and is a beautiful addition to downtown and brings in LOTS of business that in turn creates JOBS. Meeker did a great job as mayor and we would be lucky to have another one like him.

  • dwntwnboy2 Jun 6, 2013

    "The Mayor needs to focus on the political aspects of the town, not fireworks."- she is. By doing this downtown, it makes enough money for the city to actually HAVE fireworks. Without the extra money coming in, the city would do like other cities and cancel them to save the valuable dollars they do have.

    "nice to see them wasting tax payer money once again"- funny thing is, they aren't wasting anything. They are actually getting more back for the dollars spent, in reality being very frugal with taxpayer money- which is what they are supposed to do- right?

  • dwntwnboy2 Jun 6, 2013

    "And there is the rub. Insufficient parking"- if you can't find a place to park downtown, you aren't trying or are too lazy to go into a parking deck. From my office I can see no less than 4-6 decks along Wilmington street alone- not to mention the ones by the amphitheatre and under the Marriott. There is MORE than enough parking downtown.