Exploring San Diego


Heading to San Diego's Big Bay Boom? Here's where to watch, parking

Security amps up for Big Bay Boom fireworks show
Posted at 8:23 AM, Jul 04, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-04 11:48:44-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — San Diego's biggest fireworks spectacular is set to light up the night sky above San Diego Bay Thursday.

The Big Bay Boom will unleash a pyrotechnic extravaganza for July 4th, giving viewers all across the San Diego waterfront a sight to behold.

The show kicks off Thursday at 9 p.m. An estimated 300,000 to 500,000 visitors are expected to take in the fireworks display around San Diego.

RELATED: San Diego July 4th fireworks map

The Port of San Diego and convention center are teaming up to offer a free Big Bay Boom community celebration at the center's Bayfront Terraces starting at 5 p.m. Food and drinks will be available for purchase.

But don't fret, with that many onlookers there's plenty of room to watch and get down to the bay:


Free Harbor Island Shuttle:
For shuttle service to Harbor Island, spectators are asked to park at the airport’s long-term parking lot. A shuttle will be available at the lot beginning at 6 p.m. on July 4. After the show, the last shuttles will run at 10:45. 

Free Shelter Island Shuttle:
Shuttle pick up for the Shelter Island shuttle will be at the corner of Carleton Street and Rosecrans Street adjacent to West Marine beginning at 3 p.m. on July 4. After the show, the last shuttles will run at 10:45 p.m.

Where to watch

The best views of the Big Bay Boom will be from Shelter Island, Harbor Island, North and South Embarcadero parks, Seaport Village, Marina District, Little Italy and the Coronado Ferry Landing. If you're able to grab a seat high up at a downtown hotel, high rise, or condo you'll see quite a show as well.

If you're trying to snag a spot though, you'd better show up quick. Early-risers routinely grab a spot as July 4th begins and choose to spend the day outside ahead of the massive show.

The Big Bay Boom also offers some helpful tips on parking on its website here.

If you're listening in, the 20-minute show will be choreographed to music broadcasted on:

  • Star 94.1
  • Channel 93.3
  • JAM’N 95.7
  • 101.5 KGB
  • ROCK 105.3
  • NewsRadio 600 KOGO
  • XTRA Sports 1360

Big Bay Boom facts

To put on such a large show, predictably, there's a massive amount of work to be done.

It takes more than 2000 hours to create the spectacle, according to pyrotechnic Sam Bruggema, and takes about $300,000 to produce. Tonight's show will used more than 8,500 pounds of explosives.

But that 20-minute in turn produces an estimated economic impact of $10.6 million, including sales for area hotels, restaurants, retail shops and tour operators.

And it's worth it. The show has been recognized as one of the best fireworks show's in the nation and best in San Diego, according to organizers.