Holidays | Outings + Activities

Hot Fireworks Tips for Fourth of July Around Puget Sound

Plus top picks for Fourth family fests, by our readers

Seafair fireworks over Lake Union. istockphoto.

Fourth fireworks: The bane of families with young kids (and dogs). Should you choose to watch (unless you land an invite to a boat or deck with a view), you have to battle crowds and a seriously late night for the littles (sunset is at 9:10 p.m. this year in Seattle). If you don't watch, you still may get sleepless kids (and terrified dog), unless, perhaps you're camping here

A happy medium, if you can find it, is to head to a neighborhood viewing spot to get a glimpse of the sparkle show, without the crowds. Where? We asked our readers for their top tips.  They also shared their favorite Fourth fests around the Sound. 

Seattle fireworks-watching spot for Seafair Summer Fourth at Gasworks

Seafair Summer Fourth's fireworks are the region's biggest display. Here are less crazy spots to watch. 

- Watch Lake Union show from the Bainbridge Island ferry: "Not our tip - but overheard from a family recently. They timed a Bainbridge-to-Seattle ferry ride in time to catch the Lake Union fireworks. Said it was a great view, with NO traffic on I-5 as they headed home."

- Ballard bridge: "Years ago before kids and when we lived in Ballard we would walk down to the Ballard bridge for a little view of the fireworks."

- Eastlake Bar and Grill or other Eastlake/Lake Union restaurants: "Eastlake Bar and Grill will have a great view from their deck. There are also a lot of pocket parks and docks all around lake Union." Another reader suggests "anywhere along Lakeview Blvd or the Roanoke overpass area."

- Ivar's Salmon House, Lake Union. "Ivar's Salmon House is located on the lake and you can eat there too. Make a reservation early." (Editor's note: This might be a good date-night spot, too. Leave the kids at home!)

- Queen Anne street ends with views: One likely park with a view, if you live near the area, is Maclean Park at Taylor Avenue N and Newton St. Find information and a map here

- Overlook at Providence Mt. St. Vincent. "We enjoy watching fireworks from the overlook at Providence Mt. St. Vincent in West Seattle (4831 35th Ave S.W.) and also the overlook at Belvedere Park along Admiral Way. Love the West Seattle 4th of July Kids Parade

Eastside and north fests and fireworks-watching spots- Magnuson Park: "Here's a great alternative to watching the Lake Union show. Watch Kirkland's fireworks from one of the parks on Lake Washington, such as Magnuson Park."

- Bellevue Family Fourth: Our favorite Fourth of July fest is hands-down the one in downtown Bellevue. We usually spend the day with family, and scurry over to the Downtown Bellevue Park to catch the fireworks show. It's amazing and the drive isn't too terrible going home."

- Fourth on the Plateau in Sammamish: "Awesome fireworks, kids' activities, music, more."

- The Issaquah 4th of July parade and festival. "The Issaquah Fourth fest is all about families and little ones, love the small-town feel."

- An Edmonds Kind of Fourth: "We like going to the Edmonds Kind of 4th festival, which has a close-up fireworks show and fewer people but a good-size show." Another reader says: "Great parade including local kids! Awesome water hose fight with local fire fighters. can sit up high on a hill and see both Kingston and Edmonds fireworks."

- Meadowdale Park, Edmonds: "We live in North Edmonds so usually see them at Meadowdale Park."

- Log Boom Park, Kenmore: "Lake Forest Park has some great neighborhoods to see the fireworks launched at Log Boom Park on Lake Washington." 

- Everett Colors of Freedom Fourth: "Parade, Imagine Children's Museum, cheap ice skating at XFinity Arena."

Kitsap Peninsula fests and fireworks-watching spots

- Bainbridge Grand Olde Fourth: "Parade, street fair: It's small-town Americana. Lots of booths, food for sale by local non profits and school clubs, teams."

South of Seattle fests and fireworks-watching spots

- Field House Park, Des Moines: "For those with kids who don't like the noise [of the fireworks], you can still view them from the Field House Park in Des Moines -- a little farther away, but perfect for those no-noise kids."

- Steilacoom: "We always go to Steilacoom's Fourth fest, south of Tacoma, for a small-town, fun but not-frenzied Fourth." "It's small-town America with kids riding decorated bikes and parents pulling kids in wagons." "It is doable for the whole family and small enough to not be overwhelming."

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