There are plenty of spectacular fireworks displays and celebrations to enjoy right here in the Garden State—who needs NYC? We've rounded up some of the biggest and best, but BestofNJ.com has you covered with listings for your specific town.
Freedom and Fireworks Festival, Jersey City
If there's one North Jersey event to attend this 4th, it's this! The 3rd annual festival will feature live music on two stages, including Judah Tribe, People in Disguise, Eliza Neals, bstreetband, and last but definitely not least, the Village People.
Children's activities and amusement rides run the span of the festival. Food selection includes Luke's Lobster, Burger Warrior, Kimchi Taco Truck, The Cow and the Curd, Kona Ice, and many more delectable options. Fireworks by Grucci will begin after dark and will last 22 minutes. The event is expected to draw over 125,000 people, so plan ahead and get there early. Enjoy the views of the very patriotic red, white, and blue Empire State Building while you're at it. Liberty State Park, 200 Morris Pesin Drive; July 4, 1pm to 10pm
Fireworks at New Jersey State Fair, East Rutherford
The State Fair runs until July 10th this year and features over 150 attractions and rides, nightly entertainment, a petting zoo, a new "Death-Defying High-Dive Act", delicious fair food (50+ vendors this year!) and much more. This year's fireworks show promises to wow fair-goers for two consecutive nights on July 3 and 4, beginning at 11pm.
Parking is $5 and you can see the fireworks for free with admission to the fair. Refer to the event schedule to maximize your night of fun. Racing pigs, anyone? State Fair Meadowlands, 102 NJ State Highway 120, East Rutherford
Maplewood Fourth of July
This year marks the 114th celebration of the 4th in Maplewood.
The opening ceremony kicks off from Ricalton Square at 8am. The main events begin within Memorial Park at 9am, and include the first annual July 4th Car Show, live music, face painting, an ice cream eating contest, a pet award show, karaoke, carnival games, and an option to purchase tickets that include seeing the Zerbini Family Circus. Circus tickets include free admission to all other live entertainment and the fireworks viewing area. Fireworks begin at approximately 9:15pm, but first get in the spirit with the 9pm dance party at South Field. Maplewood Memorial Park, 580 Valley St., Maplewood; July 4, 7am to 10pm
17th Annual Declaration of Independence Reading & July 4th Celebration, Ringwood Manor
To celebrate the 241st anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, re-enactors will read it aloud to the folks gathered on the lawn at the front steps of the Manor at 2:30pm. The celebration also includes colonial dancing, a historic flag display, an opportunity to sign your own Declaration of Independence with a quill pen and ink, 18th century games and toys, a celebratory musket firing, and much more. Free watermelon slices will be available for all visitors. 1304 Sloatsburg Rd., Ringwood; 1pm to 4pm
Montclair's 66th Annual Independence Day Parade, Family Picnic, & Fireworks
The parade kicks off the festivities at 11am at Bloomfield and South Fullerton Avenues, travels west on Bloomfield Avenue to Midland Avenue, continues to Watchung Avenue, west to Valley Road and ends at Edgemont Park. The parade will feature the Fralinger String Band, Wayne Raiders Drum and Bugle Corps, the Lesbian & Gay Big Apple Corps marching band, St. Columquille's pipe and drum band, and more. The family picnic takes place at Edgemont Park and will begin immediately following the parade. Applegate Farms ice cream will be on offer—need we say more? But yes, there is indeed much more: Owls and Lions will provide the soundtrack while the kids can enjoy various activities such as face painting or sand art. The huge fireworks display will be staged at Yogi Berra Stadium (home to the New Jersey Jackals).
Admission is $3 per person or $10 per family. Parade: Bloomfield & S. Fullerton Avenues; Picnic: Edgemont Park; Fireworks: 27 Clove Rd, Little Falls; July 4, gates open 6:30pm, free parking at Montclair State University's Carparc Diem Deck and at Red Hawk Parking Deck
Where are you planning on catching the fireworks this year? Share with us on Facebook or Twitter! We'd love to see photos.