Die-Hard Fireworks Fans Brave the Rain to Stake Out Front-Row Seats

By Jeanmarie Evelly on July 4, 2014 3:50pm 

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 Bad weather put a damper on some July 4th activities, though skies were expected to clear by nighttime.
Spectators Wait in Rain for Fourth of July Fireworks
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BROOKLYN BRIDGE PARK — The dreary weather put a damper on many New Yorkers' Fourth of July plans, but a collection of die-hard spectators still braved the rain to stake out early spots to catch Macy's fireworks extravaganza.

A smaller-than-usual crowd — armed with umbrellas, ponchos and towels — set up camp along the waterfront in Brooklyn Bridge Park early Friday afternoon, in hopes the weather would clear up before the nighttime spectacle.

"I want a bird's eye view," said Lisa Zeiss, a visitor from Florida who staked out a seat on a bench in the park. "We're staying put — I think it's going to get harder and harder to get a seat here."

Weather forecasts as of Friday afternoon predicted that the rain would clear by early evening, giving way to cloudy skies.

The bad weather was enough to wash out some New Yorkers' daytime plans, including Jay Laraque, of Kew Gardens, who scrapped plans to catch the ferry from Long Island City to Brooklyn Bridge Park for a day of barbeque and basketball after the rains started around noon.

"Mother nature had other plans," he said as he headed home instead.

Still, the rain was of little concern to devoted fireworks fans, who were determined to see the first East River-based show since organizers relocated to the Hudson River in 2008.

"We've been out here since 9 this morning," said Kacie Parker, 23, who took shelter under umbrellas in Brooklyn Bridge Park with a group of friends from church.

"We're just kind of reserving a spot," she said, adding that the group planned to picnic once the rains passed.

Kevin Hoover, of Greenpoint, was heading to a family cookout on Long Island but planned to return at night to try and catch the fireworks in DUMBO.

"I'll go get an umbrella, but I think I'll go," he said, adding that true New Yorkers are resilient enough to put up with a little rain.

"New Yorkers are tough," he said.

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