On July 4th, 2008 North Brooklynites gathered at CitiStorage’s waterfront headquarters for Elaine and Norm Brodsky’s annual Independence Day Party. The highlight, as in previous years, was the unbelievable view of the East River for Macy’s fireworks display. Little did anyone expect, however, that this would be the last time the 4th of July would be celebrated at the site.
2009 marked the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson’s voyage from Amsterdam to New York and the founding of New Amsterdam. To commemorate that historic event, as well as the return of the restored USS Intrepid, Macy’s “temporarily” moved their Independence Day celebration to the Hudson River. Four years later, New Jersey and West Side viewers still maintain a preferential vantage point over their Brooklyn, Queens and East Side neighbors.
With the holiday approaching, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and State Senator Dan Squadron called on Macy’s to return its annual fireworks display to the East River. “What we all were told was a one-year hiatus on the Hudson has now become the new norm, leaving more than half the city out of the celebration,” said de Blasio. “New York’s Fourth of July should be a real New York party,” agreed Squadron. “New Yorkers: make your voices heard loud and clear and help us tell Macy’s that July 4th should be a real citywide celebration!”
Squadron and de Blasio along with Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz plan to meet with Macy’s executives in the coming weeks to press for a commitment to bring fireworks back to the Brooklyn-Queens waterfront.
“I am disappointed, that again this year, it’s likely New Jerseyans and residents along the West Side of Manhattan will get prime viewing,” said Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz. “The Macy’s fireworks display is a spectacular event that promotes economic activity and attracts visitors from all over the world.” The Beep called on Macy’s to consider putting some barges on the East River, “so the entire city can enjoy the show.”
New Yorkers can sign a petition urging Macy’s to move the fireworks at advocate.nyc.gov/fireworks.
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