Fireworks light up the Fourth of July skies around Bradenton

There are several fireworks shows scheduled around the area Monday evening. Here’s a look at some of them:

Anna Maria Island: The Beach House fireworks were canceled because of nearby nesting shorebirds, but the annual Sandbar Fireworks Extravaganza is still going on, as they have for 20 years. The Sandbar is at 100 Spring Avenue, Anna Maria. You can watch for free from anywhere in the vicinity, but if you want a pampered fireworks experience you can attend the VIP party under the Sandbar Event Pavilion. Party packages include food and an open bar, valet parking and a private area to view the fireworks. Tickets are $140 for adults and $50 for kids. Call 941-778-8705 or go to islanddining.com.

Palmetto: The annual Fourth Fest in Palmetto is always a blast, and this year it’s free again and features music by Smash Mouth. The band is scheduled to start at 7 p.m. and shortly after they finish, right after dark, is a fireworks show over the Manatee River. If you’re at the festival in Sutton Park, you’ll be in a really good spot to witness the fireworks. But anywhere along the riverfront in Palmetto or Bradenton, especially close to downtown, offers a great view. The Bradenton Riverwalk will offer a ideal setting if you’re on the south side of the river.

Sarasota: Right after sunset on the Fourth, around 9 p.m., downtown Sarasota’s fireworks display gets going. There are plenty of places around downtown to watch, from anywhere downtown including Bayfront Park and Island Park. Take a boat out onto Sarasota Bay for a spectacular view.

Siesta Key: Also, about that same time, the 26th annual Fourth of July Fireworks Display is set for Siesta Key. The fireworks are set off from just north of the volleyball courts, and the viewing is good from anywhere to the south and along Crescent Beach (south of Siesta Public Beach), or out on the gulf or from the Intracoastal Waterway.

Marty Clear: 941-708-7919, @martinclear

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