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RI Colchester - near waterfront for July 3 fireworks?

Germantown, MD
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RI Colchester - near waterfront for July 3 fireworks?

We are coming back from Quebec City on July 3 and are looking to stop around Burlington. Since we will be traveling to DC the next day, it would be great to see fireworks on the 3rd. We have a room booked at RI Colchester. It was alot cheaper than the Hilton (and CY wasn't available). How difficult will it be to get to the fireworks from here? Debating whether it's worth it to upgrade to Hilton (about $70 more). We have 2 young kids, aged 7 &10, so won't want to walk crazy amounts.

Vermont
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1. Re: RI Colchester - near waterfront for July 3 fireworks?

It's easy to drive there. More difficult to get a parking spot. The fireworks display in Burlington is fantastic and a lot of people turn out for it.

You can see the fireworks from anywhere along the Burlington waterfront.

If you go very early, you can score a parking spot downtown, even close to the waterfront.

Waterfront Park is the eye of the action. It's where the big party is. There will be ice cream vendors and all kinds of action there. Jamed packed with people. There isn't much parking in that area ... so walking from downtown is your best option (about a 10-15 minute walk.)

Oakledge Park and North Beach are good viewing spots. Both are parks that you have to pay to drive into. Though one tip with North Beach, you can park at Burlington High School and walk in, and it's free to walk in (no glass containers). It's about a 7 minute walk from the high school to the beach. In the mid-afternoon, you should be able to get a parking spot at BHS. By dusk, it might be difficult to find a spot to park.

You can also park at the Univerity of Vermont (Just off Corrigan Drive if you want to find it with Google Maps). On the night of the fireworks, they usually have big busses taking people from this parking lot down to the waterfront (for free). It's a very good way to go.

Expect big crowds. But also expect a great fireworks display. Have a great trip.

Germantown, MD
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2. Re: RI Colchester - near waterfront for July 3 fireworks?

Thanks! So, if we drove from the RI Colchester, how long would that take? When you say go early, what time do you consider early? If we wanted to stay closer than Colchester, do you have any recommendations for a nice hotel/inn that isn't $200+ per night?

Burlington, Vermont
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3. Re: RI Colchester - near waterfront for July 3 fireworks?

How close do you really want to be? Esp. with young kids who might not want to put up with the huge crowds on Burlington's waterfront?

You are already staying near Water Tower Hill, which is a prime viewing spot for the fireworks, albeit a mile or so away as the crow flies from the show. Lots of people drive their cars to the parking lots over there to see the show vs. fighting the crowds downtown. You are a 45-second drive from those parking lots. I'd suggest you make it easy on yourself and take it. The view is still wonderful, it's just not as "in your face" as Burlington's waterfront site would be.

Germantown, MD
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4. Re: RI Colchester - near waterfront for July 3 fireworks?

That is what I needed to know!!! I don't know the area, so I'm not familiar with the viewing spots. I'm fine with not being right in the thick of things, as long as we have a nice viewing spot. I know those areas are sometimes nicer! So, Water Tower Hill is a good spot?

Burlington, Vermont
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5. Re: RI Colchester - near waterfront for July 3 fireworks?

I second Water Tower Hill, Mountain View Drive, Colchester. Great view and you don't have to sit in traffic getting out of Burlington after the show. Many business parking lots up there, and you can get a spot on the various lawns after parking your car.

Try to find a spot not near a street light facing towards the interstate for best show and bring some bug spray as the mosquitos can be a bother.

Edited: 27 April 2011, 14:17
Burlington VT
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6. Re: RI Colchester - near waterfront for July 3 fireworks?

And.... if you want to stay closer to downtown BTV (which is a great place for dinner, and strolling), A few places that are ~2 miles away are the Anchorage Motor Inn, Doubeltree, Ho-hum Motel, Sheraton, and many others. They're all near the intersection of I-89 and Williston Road/US Rt. 2.

Colchester is great, though it's suburban and lacks any charm. Fine just to sleep of course. Depending on your finances, I'd consider the extra $70 for the Hilton (or Marriott). Both are an easy 3-4 minute walk to the waterfront, and 5 min to many restaurants, pubs and nice shops on Church St in downtown Burlington.

7. Re: RI Colchester - near waterfront for July 3 fireworks?

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