We celebrate with a big fireworks display twice a year in Naples – once for the Fourth of July and then again on New Year’s Eve. This is a very popular event and parking can be challenging, so go early to park in a legitimate spot and to stake out your territory on the beach. The fireworks are ignited from a barge near the Pier which means your best vantage points will be on the beach just north and south of the Pier.
Lowdermilk Park is a good place to go because you are still close enough to the fireworks, there is parking if you get there early and there are bathrooms. Take your beach chairs, a snack and some beverages (no glass, please) to relax on the beach until the show starts after it gets dark. Personal use of sparklers or any fireworks are prohibited per City ordinance. That being said, the Chinese lanterns are getting more popular every year and it’s quite a sight as people get warmed up for the big show. You can buy your own at any of the fireworks stands to contribute to everyone’s pleasure.
Between conversation with friends and family, people-watching, dolphins, birds and a long line of boats assembling to watch the fireworks from the water, there will be plenty to make the time go by quickly until showtime. Remember to bring a flashlight or use the application on your smartphone to make your way off of the beach.
Don’t be in a hurry to leave after the show because you’ll only be waiting in traffic. Besides, up and down the beach you’ll see private homeowners along the Gulf competing for bragging rights with their own fireworks displays. This will go on for hours after the show.
If you want to continue the celebration of bringing in the New Year, then go to either Third Street South (if you hustle you might see some of the “snow” falling) or one of the restaurants on Fifth Avenue South after the fireworks display. That’s where you’ll find the action.
Where: Naples Pier
Time: 9:00 PM