Fireworks Returning to Harbor

After their absence for over a decade, the City of Boston officials announced that fireworks on the Boston Harbor would return for the first time this century.

The fireworks will be set off Saturday, August 31 at 9:00 p.m. as part of the final Summer on the Waterfront celebration—a summer long program aimed at attracting Boston residents and visitors to programs on the water in various neighborhoods.

The fireworks will be part of a weekend-long city sponsored Boston Arts Festival on Saturday, August 31 and Sunday, September 1 from noon to 6:00 p.m. at Christopher Columbus Park.
The fireworks will be launched from a barge anchored in the Harbor between East Boston and South Boston and there will be unobstructed views from many locations along Boston Harbor.

“We’re looking forward to bringing public fireworks back to Boston Harbor to celebrate our annual arts festival,” said Mayor Thomas Menino. “It will be another great Labor Day weekend in the City of Boston with something for everyone to enjoy.”

Since 2012, Summer on the Waterfront has been connecting residents and visitors with the harbor and each other by promoting a wide range of activities that celebrate Boston’s rich diversity and its cultural and natural resources.

In June the nonprofit group kicked off its Summer on the Waterfront fundraising campaign to bring the fireworks back with parties along Boston Harbor.

“Because the fireworks will be launched on the Boston Harbor it will be clearly visible from The North End, Piers Park in East Boston, Charlestown, the Seaport, South Boston, and down to Dorchester/Quincy,” said Summer on the Waterfront Project Manager Christian Sann. “The fireworks will unite our communities around a common public event.  In our 5-year goal we’re hoping to run Neighborhood-Week celebrations that culminate in the fireworks where each of the 8 waterfront neighborhoods and their communities are highlighted.”

Executive Director of The Boston Harbor Association and founder of Summer on the Waterfront Julie Wormser said the group is delighted to be partnering with Mayor Menino and The Boston Arts Festival to present Boston Harbor fireworks this year.  “Boston was abuzz this summer with activities and programs and we are thrilled to bring the fireworks back to the waterfront,” said Wormser.

The 10th annual Boston Arts Festival Christopher Columbus Waterfront Park, the weekend-long event showcases more than forty juried visual artists exhibiting and selling one-of a-kind paintings, sculpture, ceramics, pottery, jewelry, fine glasswork, woodwork, mixed media, and photography.

The Festival also features a performing arts and interactive arts program. Past performers have included the Boston Ballet, Blue Man Group, Boston Lyric Opera, Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, Mean Creak and Gentlemen Hall.

“The return of summer fireworks over Boston Harbor celebrates the vibrant and welcoming community the waterfront has become, thanks to the area’s organizations and businesses and to the City of Boston. They are truly something to celebrate,” said Alison Nolan, fourth generation co-owner of Boston Harbor Cruises, Summer on the Waterfront organizer, and fireworks sponsor.

Suzanne Taylor, executive director of the Freedom Trail Foundation and a Summer on the Waterfront organizer added that Boston’s waterfront is exciting and offers something for residents and visitors alike.

“We invite people to enjoy the fireworks on August 31, and to visit the hundreds of museums, parks, restaurants and other local businesses that line the harbor year-round,” she said.  For more information, please call 617-635-3911 or visit

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