July 4 fireworks in California: Where to watch and where to set them off

Huntington Beach, CA - July 04: A person wades into the high tide surge to get a closer look at the fireworks celebration over the ocean at the pier in Huntington Beach Tuesday, July 4, 2023. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)
Fireworks over the ocean at the pier in Huntington Beach last year. (Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

Californians looking to enjoy fireworks on July 4 will have plenty of options Thursday depending on where they live.

Though fireworks are illegal in the city of Los Angeles, no matter what the neighbors down the street might be doing or saying, there are roughly 300 cities across the state that allow the sale and possession of legal fireworks that meet the State Fire Marshal's "safe and sane" seal of approval.

The full list of cities can be found here.

Specific timing restrictions may be in effect depending on location, so anyone looking to light a firework should consult with their local fire department to get all the information. Dry brush and other flammable materials can ignite given the right spark and children should never handle a firework without parental supervision, according to the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

Anyone caught violating the state's mandates on fireworks can face a fine up to $50,000, be sent to jail for up to a year or both, according to Cal Fire.

The agency has additional advice for anyone looking to light a legal firework or two over the holiday:

  • Don't place any of your body parts over a firework after the fuse is lit

  • Back up! Stand back after lighting a firework

  • Don't point any lit fireworks at other people

  • Don't experiment or attempt to relight fireworks

  • Don't wear loose clothing

  • Never carry a firework in a pocket

While dogs, cats and other pets may not appreciate the summer tradition, here are a list of firework shows that will be on display Thursday in Los Angeles, Orange, and Ventura counties. Consider checking with each venue before heading out for any last-minute changes or cancellations.

Los Angeles County

Orange County

Ventura County

Here is a list of places in and around L.A. County where you can celebrate the nation's 248th birthday.

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This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.