5 Most Extravagant July 4th Celebrations in New York City

New York City is renowned for its grand and extravagant Independence Day celebrations. Over the years, the city has hosted some of the most memorable and patriotic events to mark America's Independence. Here are the 5 most extravagant July 4th celebrations in New York City, highlighting the venues, unique aspects, VIPs in attendance, and the use of patriotic ceremonial ribbons, American flags, and patriotic buntings. CeremonialSupplies.com, the best online shop for military ceremonial products, ceremonial ribbons of every color and sizes and lengths – ranging from 1” widths up to 12” and in lengths of 10, 15, 20, or 25 yards, is delighted to share everything we’ve compiled about these most extravagant July 4th celebrations that took place in the Big Apple! Enjoy!

stars and stripes patriotic ribbons

1. Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular (2019)

The Macy’s Fourth of July Fireworks Spectacular is an iconic event that has dazzled New Yorkers and visitors alike for decades. The 2019 celebration was one of the most extravagant to date. Held over the East River, with prime viewing spots at Brooklyn Bridge Park, the South Street Seaport, and various rooftops across Manhattan, this event featured over 70,000 fireworks shells launched from barges in a 25-minute pyrotechnic extravaganza.

Special Highlights: The event included a synchronized musical score featuring classics like "The Star-Spangled Banner" and "America the Beautiful," performed by the West Point Band and Glee Club. Patriotic ceremonial ribbons adorned the staging areas, adding to the festive atmosphere. The skyline was illuminated with American flags displayed on digital billboards.

VIPs: Notable attendees included celebrities like Jennifer Lopez and Derek Hough, who performed during the televised broadcast.

Decorations: Patriotic buntings draped across viewing platforms, and American flags were prominently displayed along the waterfront, enhancing the patriotic ambiance.

patriotic bunting

2. Statue of Liberty Centennial Celebration (1986)

The centennial celebration of the Statue of Liberty in 1986 remains one of the grandest Fourth of July events in New York City’s history. Held on Liberty Island and Battery Park, this celebration marked the 100th anniversary of the iconic statue.

Highlights: The event included a grand parade of ships in New York Harbor, a spectacular fireworks display, and a star-studded concert. Patriotic ceremonial ribbons were used to decorate the main stage, while patriotic buntings adorned the historic monument.

VIPs: President Ronald Reagan and First Lady Nancy Reagan were the guests of honor, along with French President François Mitterrand, symbolizing the statue's Franco-American friendship.

Decorations: The island was adorned with American flags and patriotic buntings, and red, white, and blue ribbons flowing everywhere, creating a visually stunning and symbolic display of patriotism.

American Flag 3' x 5'

3. Centennial of the Brooklyn Bridge (1983)

The Brooklyn Bridge Centennial in 1983 was a celebration that captured the spirit of New York City. The festivities took place on and around the Brooklyn Bridge, one of the city’s most iconic landmarks.

Special Highlights: The celebration featured a grand fireworks display, a historical reenactment, and a parade of vintage cars across the bridge. Patriotic ceremonial ribbons lined the pedestrian pathways, and patriotic buntings and American flags decorated the bridge’s towers.

VIPs: Mayor Ed Koch and other city officials attended, along with descendants of John A. Roebling, the bridge’s original designer.

Decorations: American flags flew high on the bridge’s suspension cables, and patriotic buntings added a festive touch to the historic structure.

red carpet and stanchions

4. July 4th at the Waldorf Astoria (1976)

In 1976, the Waldorf Astoria Hotel hosted an opulent July 4th celebration as part of the United States Bicentennial. This event was an epitome of elegance and patriotic fervor.

Special Highlights: The evening included a grand banquet, a ballroom dance, and a fireworks display over the East River, visible from the hotel’s rooftop terrace. The ballroom was adorned with patriotic ceremonial ribbons of red, white, and blue, and patriotic buntings that added a festive air to the luxurious setting.

VIPs: The guest list included political dignitaries, celebrities, and business leaders, with President Gerald Ford making an appearance.

Decorations: American flags were prominently displayed throughout the venue, and patriotic buntings decorated the grand ballroom and lobby.

triangle flag and medal display case

5. Freedom Fest on Governor’s Island (2021)

The 2021 Freedom Fest on Governor’s Island was a contemporary celebration that combined tradition with modern flair. Held on Governor’s Island, the event offered stunning views of the Manhattan skyline and the Statue of Liberty.

Special Highlights: The event featured live music, food trucks, and a spectacular fireworks show. Patriotic ceremonial ribbons were used to mark special areas and stages, while patriotic buntings added a vibrant touch to the festival atmosphere.

VIPs: Local politicians, including the Mayor of New York City, attended the event along with notable artists and performers.

Decorations: American flags were ubiquitous, flying from every corner of the island, and patriotic buntings adorned the stages and viewing areas.

In each of these celebrations, the use of patriotic ceremonial ribbons, American flags, and patriotic buntings played a crucial role in enhancing the patriotic spirit. These elements, along with the presence of VIPs and unique event highlights, made each celebration a memorable tribute to America’s independence. Shop CeremonialSupplies.com for all your celebratory essentials, from groundbreaking shovels and accessories for soil-turning ceremonies, grand opening ribbons and ribbon-cutting ceremonial scissors, to carpets and aisle runners, stanchions and rope, clothing, military and graduation ceremonies, and many more special occasion items which you can have custom-printed with your company or brand logo. Click here for a quote.