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Downtown Wilmington celebrates Independence Day

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- Thousands of people took to the streets of downtown Wilmington to celebrate Independence Day.

Food, music, fun and of course fireworks made up the 17th Annual Battleship Blast.

The streets of downtown Wilmington were overflowing with red, white and blue.

“We’ve been coming here for 7 years and absolutely love the fireworks here,” said Carolyn Johnson.

Johnson and her family waited for nearly 4 hours so they could have the perfect view.

“We just like being here and seeing all the crowds, the people and the food. It’s a great place to come for the fireworks,” said Johnson.

As people settled in for the fireworks display, some people were reminded that this years fireworks almost didn’t happen. A good Samaritan stepped in and picked up part of the bill.

“This man knew that we were struggling here locally and decided that he wanted to donate money to make the show happened,” said Mayor Bill Saffo.

Businessman Henry Johnston made the donation for the fireworks in honor of his wife, who died in March.

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Fireworks were Great!

First time since I was a teenager (33 years old now) that I have been downtown to see the fireworks. I hate crowds and remember my car overheating while trying to get out of downtown on my last fireworks viewing. I was very strategic in planning on where to park, and where to sit so we could make the quickest exit possible. We arrived about 7:30, went on a trek for drinks, vendor lines were ridiculous, ended up hitting a store on Front Street and made it back to our seats. Viewed the fireworks and had a lovely evening. Really felt like we had the best seats in the house. We walked back to our car and were home before 10. It was my daughter's first time and we plan on continuing tradition!

Battle ship Fireworks

I guess the Battle Ship fireworks should be renamed the Hilton Hotel Fireworks as they were launched in front of the only tall building
on the entire Wilmington River front. Maybe next year they can move it up to the PPD Building where even more privileged citizens can enjoy them from the comfort of their offices.

Fireworks! From the north!

It was rather humorous to see everyone rotate their chairs and shift positions once the fireworks kicked off last night - seems the rockets were launched from a barge up river this year, instead of from Battleship Park. While it was a lovely 19 minute display, it certainly wasn't worthy of the two hour wait before, the eight block walk and the 90 minutes it took us to get out of downtown Wilmington. What happened to the additional police presence promised to deal with traffic?

Saffo/City Council and $$$$$$$$

Saffo says the fireworks almost didn't happen? LOL. Well gee Bill, how about all the money you guys have wasted on that baseball stadium project? The city would have the money if ya'll weren't so financially irresponsible.