Tag Archives: July Fourth

Returning July Fourth fireworks could mean big biz for LIC waterfront


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Macy’s

It could be an explosive Independence Day for businesses around the Long Island City waterfront.

After moving to the Hudson River in 2009, Macy’s and Bill de Blasio announced Monday that the department store’s annual 4th of July Fireworks show is returning to the East River this summer.

The location change is expected to benefit restaurants, bars and other establishments along the river that previously saw increased traffic during the festivities.

“It was actually an emptiness that the East River had. It was basically a tradition we had lost for five years,” said Tony Raouf, owner of Riverview Restaurant & Lounge.

Located close to Gantry Plaza State Park, a popular fireworks viewing spot in years past, Riverview is planning on having a celebration with a band this year.

Waterfront Crab House, another Long Island City eatery near the East River, on Borden Avenue, used to close the street down during the holiday and hold a fundraiser for children’s cancer before the fireworks moved.

Parking changes and construction no longer make the closure possible, according to Barbara Heden, the restaurant’s manager.

“[This July Fourth] probably won’t be like it used to be, but will bring us business,” she said.

Heden expects business will quadruple compared to last year. She also said the newly-created Hunter’s Point South Park, which is located on Center Boulevard between 50th and 54th avenues and did not exist when the fireworks were formerly on the East River, will help bring in more crowds.

Z NYC Hotel, opened in 2011 at 43rd Avenue and 11th Street, is already developing special July Fourth events and programming for the holiday that it will be announcing soon, according to Lisa Gneo, director of sales and marketing.

“This will be a great opportunity for many businesses in Long Island City and another way to generate tremendous revenue for our hotel and the community,” she said.

The country’s largest pyrotechnic July Fourth display, the fireworks will be launched from the Brooklyn Bridge for the first time and from barges positioned on the lower East River.

Amy Kule, executive producer of Macy’s events, said at the announcement that the move to the East River is not permanent.

“I’m sure when there’s something else to celebrate — or a reason to move — we will look to do so,” she said.

But the mayor said he would do everything possible “to make [the East River location] as typical as possible — as frequent as possible.”

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES

Fourth of July fireworks returning to East River


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo: Ed Reed for the Office of Mayor Bill de Blasio

Updated 2:35 p.m.

A boom is coming back to the Queens waterfront this Independence Day.

After moving to the Hudson River in 2009, the Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks show is returning to the East River this summer, the department store and Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Monday.

The country’s largest pyrotechnic July Fourth display, the fireworks will be launched from the Brooklyn Bridge and from barges positioned on the lower East River.

“What this means, the fact that fireworks come back to the East River, means that countless more New Yorkers will now be able to enjoy what is really the greatest annual fireworks show in the country,”  de Blasio said. “From Brooklyn to western Queens to the East Side of Manhattan, many more New Yorkers will be able to take part in this celebration, in their neighborhoods, on their rooftops, along the shoreline.”

The 2009 move not only left Queens residents without a place in the borough to watch fireworks on the holiday, but hurt businesses along the East River that saw increased traffic during the festivities.

“For too long, residents of our neighborhoods have been left out of what is not only a citywide, but a national event,” state Sen. Michael Gianaris said in a statement. “Once again, the Queens waterfront will be a participant in the grandest Independence Day celebration in the United States.”

 

RECOMMENDED STORIES