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The Skinny on DC events

DC 4th of July Fireworks: Rooftop vs The Mall


In mid-June, it’s easy to make new friends at a DC happy hour. A simple question can spark a lenghty conversation and especially interns- if smart- can use this opportunity to get invited to a fun 4thof July party. The question of course is: ‘Where is the best place to watch the 4th of July fireworks?’

Many hotels have special package deals, restaurants with sweeping views of the city make good money on the eve of the 4th and river cruises make for a good time as well. This year however, I found myself on a rooftop watching the fireworks for the first time. It was not easy to make this choice, since the Mall has been my destination for years. Hence, I decided it would be appropriate to capture some positives and negatives and share them in case somebody else is faced with the same decision next year.


+ Party people everywhere= alcohol everywhere. Perhaps too much for alcohol for some. For others, not enough.

– Mix of  party people and family folks don’t mix: party people chants of ‘USA, USA’ and ‘America, **** yeah!’ were not well received by family folks who prefer silence or a few muted ‘ooohhh and aaahhhs’.

+ Stay for the after party show: pick a quiet corner with a special somebody and watch the panorama of fireworks unfold on the periphery of the city.

The Mall:

+ Glowsticks galore, kids galore and police galore makes for alcohol free fun where everybody is focused on one thing: the fireworks.

+ Ooooohhhh and Aaaahhhhhh while watching fireworks with thousands of your closest friends, the enthusiasm and energy of the crowd is palpable!

– Share the metro ride home with same thousands of your closest friends, make another thousand  new friends in the process. Alternative: take refuge in a bar/restaurant until the crowds thin out a bit, then travel home almost solo.




One thought on “DC 4th of July Fireworks: Rooftop vs The Mall

  1. I’ve done rooftops pretty much every year, from the really good ones (rooftop of State Department with catered food, rooftop of building at Navy memorial right behind archives with awesome pool and cooler filled with some alcoholic punch of sorts) to the bad ones (mainly my roof, not the best view…) so I decided to try the mall this time… left my place at 8:30PM. Helps to live fairly close I guess…

    Posted by FrenchTwistDC | July 5, 2011, 7:56 pm

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