This year's fireworks was quite an (mis)adventure. Last year we frantically searched for fireworks in our area only to head into another state to find them, so we were pleasantly surprised to find that a town 15 minutes from us celebrated the 4th of July ON the 4th of July WITH fireworks. We had already filled our day with yard work, hours on the beach, neighborhood parades and ice cream sundae parties, but we just weren't done celebrating.
After a quick stop at Illiano's for dinner (because nothing says I love America like Italian food, right?), we headed up to the fireworks. Upon GPS's insistence that we'd hit our destination, we were forced to accept that the area set aside for fireworks was really small and already PACKED with people. Confident we could still find a spot, we found a place to park about 1/2 mile away and walked back to the venue.
By this time we needed a restroom. Badly. So we started looking. This city had planned their fireworks display at a boat dock. A BOAT DOCK. A long, narrow strip of land mostly covered in asphalt with a small sliver of grass on the edge of the water. I began to wonder what the event organizers were thinking. The crowded area was made more so by vendors running the length of the dock. Weaving through the throng of teenagers and young adults milling around, we finally found the restrooms: two little porta potties. We had passed CHAIN LOCKED bathrooms, which appeared to have running water, before finding these. Did I mention the place was packed with people? After waiting in line forever, we were finally next in line. The lady leaving the potty kindly informed us there was no toilet paper left. I considered switching lines, but we'd already waited 20 minutes and the line next to us was just as long. Plus, there was a suspicious amount of women in that line getting napkins from the food vendor next door, discretely folding them up as they waited their turn. We opted to use the wipes I had on hand.
Our bathrooms needs finished, we started looking for a spot to sit. This was when we realized another problem. Not only was there limited grass, most of it already jam packed, there were also huge tress blocking the view from most places. The larger asphalt areas was covered in vendors and loud, half drunk young adults. The whole place reeked of cigarette smoke and pheromones. Finally we gave up and set up our blanket on the back of the asphalt where there was a small break in vendors. Very comfortable, nothing says relax and enjoy like a thin blanket on a hard surface. After what seemed like a small eternity, we enjoyed the fireworks display, or at least the half of it that wasn't blocked by a big tree in front of us. (In the picture, you can see the tree blocking the view. You can also see some of the people walking up and down the strip the entire time the fireworks were being set off. After sitting on the asphalt all night, I don't blame them.)
Next year we'll head out of state again instead of going to a too small, mostly asphalt covered, bathroom limited, toilet paperless, more young single adults than families, smoking everywhere, tall trees lining the entire strip of land blocking the display venue. It will be worth the extra drive.
On the plus side, we did get lots of compliments on our matching tie dyed T-shirts!
(P.S. Instructions for the hairdo can be found HERE. Instructions for the shirts HERE.)