Massachusetts Fourth of July events canceled, postponed

In Beverly, officials are still planning Friday fireworks but have set a Saturday rain date.
Joanne Rathe/Globe staff
In Beverly, officials are still planning Friday fireworks but have set a Saturday rain date.

Many Eastern Massachusetts cities and towns have canceled or postponed Fourth of July fireworks and parades because of the severe weather expected to arrive Friday as Hurricane Arthur steams up the coast.

In Plymouth, the fireworks show, scheduled to be fired off Friday from a barge in the bay, was postponed for only the second time in 33 years.

“We’re postponing because the insurance company that insures the barge and the tug will not insure them if they make the trip down the coast,” said Ken Tavares, president of July 4 Plymouth Inc., which organizes the festivities. “The waters will be too rough to bring them down” Friday from Weymouth, where they were scheduled to be used in a fireworks show Thursday.


Plymouth’s fireworks will be held July 12.

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Weather forecasters said Hurricane Arthur will make its closest pass to New England from Friday night to Saturday morning. On Thursday, it was a Category 1 hurricane, the weakest kind, but it was expected to grow into a Category 2 hurricane as it moved near or over the North Carolina coast, forecasters said.

In a few area communities, festivities will go ahead as planned. The annual boat parade in Hyannis, for instance, will proceed as scheduled Friday, although other Barnstable villages have canceled their events and dozens of boats have pulled out of the parade.

“Why wouldn’t it be [happening]?” asked Carla Sullivan, Hyannis Marina’s dockmaster. “The media has so overhyped this storm . . . We’re going to get a storm just like any other kind of storm. So, yes, we’re going to get a little rain or a lot of rain . . . but we’re hoping it doesn’t affect our boat parade during the day.”

Other events taking place as scheduled Friday include the Wellfleet fireworks and Plymouth Independence Day 5K. Beverly’s fireworks are expected to go on Friday, but a rain date has been set for Saturday.


Canceled events include parades in Centerville, Natick, and Falmouth, a concert in Hyannis, and fireworks in Newton.

Events postponed until Saturday include fireworks in Fall River, Marblehead, Lawrence, and New Bedford, Marblehead’s parade, Lawrence’s fair, and Newton’s Kid Morning.

Events postponed until Sunday include fireworks in Falmouth and Lynn, and all of Salem’s events, including fireworks and a concert.

Duxbury’s parade has been postponed until Saturday at 2 p.m.

Fireworks in Barnstable have been postponed until the town’s 375th anniversary celebration later this summer, and the fireworks in Gloucester have been rescheduled for Labor Day.

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Globe correspondent Trisha Thadani contributed. Kiera Blessing can be reached at