Wet, hot American summer. That’s what’s expected of the Fourth of July weekend, but we’ll take 73 and sunny any day. And there are few places — our nation’s capital excluded — that are better suited for celebrating than Boston, where you can take in the brilliant Boston Pops fireworks display over the Charles River Esplanade. Whether you round out your weekend with requisite stops along the Freedom Trail or by witnessing Revolutionary War-era re-enactments at the annual Harborfest, here are some key pieces for a (not-so-subtly) patriotic weekend.
Photo by Bill Brett/The Boston Globe/Getty Images
Clockwise from top left: A 2-pack of organic tanks for layering | Handsome navy duffle with a pocket for your shoes | Red boat shoes, because when else are you going to wear them? | Portable charger for when adding fireworks to your Snap story eats up your battery
Photo Courtesy of Reuters
The northeastern US is preparing for a major winter storm that is expected to drop up to 3 feet of snow and bring near-hurricane-force winds. According to the National Weather Service, blizzard conditions are expected to affect more than 40 million people, including those in big cities such as NYC and Boston, where all forms of travel have been banned.
Start of Boston Marathon 2014 (Photo Courtesy of Reuters)
Boston is stronger a year after the tragic Boston Marathon bombing on April 15, 2013. And to prove it, millions of spectators came out today to cheer on 36,000 athletes as they raced from Hopkinton, MA, to Boylston, MA.
So who were the big winners? Meb Keflezighi took 1st place in crossing the finish line of the 26.2-mile run. Keflezighi, the first American winner of the Marathon since 1983, clocked in at 2 hours, 8 minutes and 37 seconds. And Kenyan marathoner Rita Jeptoo was the first woman to cross the finish line in 2:18:57.
Courtesy of Getty Images
Not long after Paul Revere warned Boston that the British were coming, Lewis and Clark left St. Louis on their mission of discovery to the uncharted west.
Now the whole country is poised to watch a World Series that not only matches Red Sox bats against Cardinal arms but also beans vs. bratwurst, chowder vs. beer, and Old Ironsides vs. The Arch.
Boston, Beyond Fenway Park
Although Philadelphia might argue, Boston has good reason to call itself “the cradle of liberty.” The Freedom Trail, a well-marked pedestrian pathway, passes sites so old that visitors almost expect to hear John Adams condemning taxation without representation.
One of those sites, Faneuil Hall, has attracted 20 million curious visitors – about 10 times more than the annual attendance at Fenway Park, the century-old ballpark where the Sox start the World Series Wednesday. READ MORE
In anticipation of tonight’s MLB All-Star Game (and, of course, after last night’s homerun derby), we’ve got America’s national pastime on the brain. Even though Boston is still mourning the loss of Kevin Youkilis to the White Sox, the city is in the process of celebrating the 100th anniversary year of Fenway Park – the nation’s oldest ballpark – and you can take advantage of it. READ MORE
Start celebrating Independence Day a few days early at Boston’s 31st annual Harborfest! There’s no better city to celebrate our nation’s independence than in Boston, the cradle of the American Revolution. All day today, enjoy fun (and free!) children’s activities – including juggling shows, dance performances and all kinds of balloon-animal fun. When you’re all ballooned-out, get a history lesson from representatives of the USS Constitution Museum, Historic New England and the New England Aquarium. READ MORE
Each year, half a million spectators line the streets of 8 consecutive Massachusetts towns to cheer on the 25,000 runners attempting to finish the winding, hilly 26.2 miles that make up the Boston Marathon. Held on Patriots’ Day — a Massachusetts holiday commemorating the beginning of the American Revolution — Boston’s marathon is the oldest and one of the most famous in the world.
But the marathon, in recent years, has obscured some other – much older – Patriots’ Day traditions.
Get a free dose of history this weekend at one of the many battle reenactments and demonstrations going on in the picturesque towns of Lexington and Concord. This Saturday, watch as 300 British and Colonial troops demonstrate the “Bloody Angle Battle.” Or get an up-close look at Parker’s Revenge when the Lexington militia company ambushes a group of British soldiers. Hartwell Tavern and the Captain William Smith House –2 historic sites that have been restored to revolutionary-era glory — will also be free and open to the public this weekend. READ MORE
There’s no better place to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day than Boston (well, OK, besides Ireland). Boston has one of the highest concentrations of Irish pubs (and people of Irish descent) in the US, and St. Paddy’s Day celebrations date back to the days before the American Revolution. But if you’re not interested in fighting through the throngs of people day-drinking along the parade route in “Southie,” put on all the green clothes you can find and head to Faneuil Hall for some family fun.
From 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., the St. Patrick’s Day celebration at Faneuil Hall will feature free live entertainment on the West End Stage. Performers will include bagpipers, Irish step dancers and other Irish musical groups. We know you’ve been practicing your jig for just this occasion! READ MORE
Are you ready for some football? Well, specifically are you ready for Super Bowl XLVI, and the matchup between the New York Giants and the New England Patriots. Football fans have already converged on Indianapolis’s Lucas Oil Stadium for a few days of fun festivities. And we’re sure there are several fans anxious to see Madonna’s half-time show and Kelly Clarkson perform “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Betting pools have already started to see if Clarkson will forget the words to the national anthem, at the biggest sports event of the year.
Well, in preparation for the big day, TravelChannel.com has a few fun articles and slideshows you should definitely take a look at, including our Super Travel Bowl 2012 slideshow. Compare Boston with NYC and decide which city should walk away with a travel trophy.
You May Also Like:
Super Travel Bowl 2012
Indianapolis City Guide
Extreme NFL Tailgating
Best NFL Stadiums
Have you figured out who this is yet? Come on, guess! OK, we’ll tell you. It’s Hidden City’s host Marcus Sakey! In the Boston episode, Marcus is transformed into an older man so he can walk around Faneuil Hall to get a feel for what it is like to hide in plain sight, just like mob boss Whitey Bulger. Whitey was living in Santa Monica, CA, for several years before the FBI finally arrested him. Read Marcus’s take on the experience in his blog.
In addition to Whitey Bulger’s story, Marcus also dives into the Great Brinks Robbery and the case of the Boston Strangler. When the Great Brinks Robbery was carried out in 1950, it was the largest bank heist in US history. The thieves made off with more than $2.7 million in assets. The Boston Strangler case is one that still causes debate about whether Albert DeSalvo was really the true killer. Marcus gets forensic psychologist Dr. David Bernstein to weigh in on the case and give him a glimpse into the mind of a psychopath. Dr. Bernstein then turns the tables on Marcus and gives him a psychopath quiz.
Catch Hidden City: Boston on Tuesday, Dec. 13 @ 10|9c.