Because You Can Do It So Wrong: Most Overrated Ways to Celebrate 4th of July in NYC (and What to Do Instead)

With any holiday, there comes cliche, stereotypical traditions. Ugh. 

And yeah, some of them are fun, but do you want to keep doing the same exact thing year in, year out for the rest of your existence?

No, no you do not. 

It's time to start mixing up your holiday celebrations: out with the old, in with the new.

Especially for July 4th - it's the peak of summer, it's beautiful out, and we want to celebrate in style. The city has no shortage of ways for New Yorkers to get their Independence Day on, but you don't want to trap yourself into tired, money-sucking, rituals that everyone and their mother will be partaking in.

So, here's our breakdown of some of the most overrated July 4th activities, and how to turn them into a not-terrible idea. 

Overrated: Boat Party on July 4th


Ahh, how wonderfully magical would it be to celebrate our nation's inception aboard a vessel on the Hudson as fireworks decorate the skies. Sure, it sounds spectacular... if it wasn't a pipe dream. 

Most Fourth of July cruises will set you back a good $400 or more. Plus, they require you to remain on a boat (rain or shine) for a good three hours prior to the fireworks display in the attempts to acquire a decent view of the show. 


Think your $400 will ensure you'll get to witness every blue, red, and white spark and eat and drink your fill? Think again. If you don't secure your spot, you might not see a single star spangled display. Hard pass. 

Solution: Boat party on July 3rd


Instead of wasting your Fourth of July on an overpriced cruise, head to Pier 81 the day before all the madness for spoiled NYC's July 4th Weekend Sunset Cruise

How does a vodka open bar courtesy of 50 Bleu Vodka, free beer and wine, passed h’ordeuvres, three hours of dancing, and breathtaking views courtesy of World Yacht’s absolute beaut, Duchess, sound for a 4th of July Party? 

Pretty damn good, right? 

It’s all going down Sunday, July 3rd, 6:30 p.m., at Pier 81, located at West 41st Street & the West Side Highway– come hell, high water, rain, or shine– and the party won’t stop until at least 9:30 p.m. That’s three, count ‘em three, hours of madness.

Seriously, what better way is there to celebrate America than by taking in breathtaking views of the greatest city in the world? Get your tickets right here!

Overrated: Watching fireworks from your home

You heard from a fellow tenant that your building has "roof access," but you're discovering what that actually means is that there's a tiny rooftop that you're not even really supposed to be on, with a lovely view of the nearby hospital. 


Ugh. It would certainly be pretty epic to throw a dope rooftop party and invite all your friends to marvel at/be jealous of your amazing apartment/life, but it looks like that just won't be happening this year. 

Solution: Watch from across the river

There's nothing quite like the Macy's Fourth of July firework display. I mean, come on. This is what "Murica is all about, right?

Each year, the Macy's fireworks burst and boom over the East River, creating a breathtaking and certainly not to be missed visual spectacular. 

This year's 40th anniversary event will also feature performance by Kenny Chesney.


Overrated: Sitting in hours of traffic to get to the beach

Ughhhhh. Everyone in the tri-state area will be headed to the beaches for Fourth of July weekend. There will be traffic, there will be road rage, there will probably be yelling and fist-shaking. 

Let's just NOT. It's just not worth it.


By the time we make it to the beach, we'll be so cranky and irritated that we'll barely be able to enjoy ourselves. Not to mention the fact that it'll be crowded AF. No thank you. 

Solution: Rooftop pools

If you'd rather feel super swanky rather than super sweaty, sip the beach and head to one of NYC's many rooftop pools.

A good number of them are a little tricky to get into, or quite pricey, but if you can find a way to get into one, you will definitely not be disappointed.

Aside from the trendy atmosphere and gloriously refreshing pool, you'll also catch some unforgettable views of the city.

So grab your friends and your biggest pair of sunglasses and be prepared to spend the day living like the celebrity you've always known you are deep down. 

Overrated: Nathan's Hot Dog Eating Contest at Coney Island


Honestly, why is this even a thing? How did we come to this, America? How? We need answers. 

Why anyone would want to gorge themselves on an ungodly amount of animal lard for sport, much less why anyone would want to WATCH this all go down, is completely beyond us.


We are also deeply puzzled as to how these people stay so physically fit when their pastime is literally consuming more calories than a human should see in a week's time.

We'll pass, thanks. 

Solution: BBQ in a park

What could possibly be better than good food, booze, a gorgeous park, and all your friends?

It sounds perfect to us. 

And yeah, the parks will probably be crowded, but not as crowded as the boardwalk on Coney Island where families and their screaming young will be clamoring for a view of grown adults shoving their faces with hot dogs. 

We'd much prefer a more #chill Independence Day. 

Check out The Only Reason You Need to Stay in NYC for 4th of July Weekend.

[Feature Image Courtesy] 

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