Don’t Leave Town: D.C.’s Best Fourth Fests

Hot spots to see the sky light up

lincoln mem
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So everyone left town and you're probably feeling bummed because you're staying here. Cheer up! D.C. is the place to be for the Fourth of July. There are so many places to see fireworks, so don't just sit on your balcony with a warm one wishing you were among those celebrating.

Here's a quick rundown for you:

Washington Monument: It's the most iconic place to view the spectacle of fireworks -- but since it's the go-to place, get there as early as you can. Oh yeah, don't forget to pack your own goodies if street-vendor hot dogs aren't your thing. Fireworks, 9:10 p.m.

Lincoln Memorial: Want a front-row seat to the show? Arrive early because the fireworks launch off from the Reflecting Pool. If you're lucky, you can snag a seat on the steps... can't get any closer to the action!

Iwo Jima Memorial: You'll love the smaller crowd, and you won't have to deal with closed Metro stations! Don't feel left out because you're not among the crowds to have fun -- you'll still get great views of the National Mall

Montgomery Fairgrounds: If you're really not in the mood to be anywhere near the city, stay close to home. The Fairgrounds will open for family-oriented entertainment. And yes, fireworks will be just as spectacular as the ones over the monuments. Gates 5 p.m.; Fireworks at 9:25 p.m.

Lake Fairfax Park: Barbecues on the lakefront: It's the typical summer past-time, along with feeling like a kid again at the outdoor water park's lazy river (Reston, Va.). Miles away from all the ruckus in the District, this locale won't disappoint for the festivities. Head over and hang by the marina, the big show begins at 9:15 p.m.

Mount Vernon: America's birthday at George's estate (Mount Vernon, Va.): Doesn't get much more patriotic than that. From a military drill demonstration to eating cake, there's a lot going on so bring the kids. There's also a "Pyrotechnic Salute to America" -- a unique daytime fireworks display over the Potomac River -- at 12:45 p.m. Oh, and the “real” George Washington himself is supposed to stop by to celebrate. See schedule of events; Adults, $15; children ages 6-11, $7; children under 5, free.  

National Harbor:  You may be able to get a two-fer at the Harbor.  Not only will you be able to catch a glimpse of the Gaylord's fireworks extravaganza, but you also can get a clear view of the fireworks from the National Mall.  Not a bad deal...  More info: the Harbor's website and the Gaylord website.

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