Mike and I are sort of notoriously bad at watching fireworks. The first year I was in Aiken for the fourth, we drove down to the river around 9:00 and couldn't find a good vantage point. So we stopped by a road-side fireworks stand and picked up some mortars to launch in the backyard. Then there was New Years 2012. You can read about that here. So again, no fireworks show.
For July 4 of 2011 I went with Mike's family to watch the show. This was the only time I've ever experienced a real successful display.
This year, I wanted to try to go back to the same spot as the 2011 show because it was a pretty good view. We pull up only to find they've built a house on the once vacant lot. We ended up finding a nice park on the river, so we set up camp, ate our Taco Bell picnic, and waited for dark.
The show started at about 9:30, and wouldn't you know there was a HUGE tree right where they were exploding. So, no view. We hurriedly packed up our things and tried to find another place to watch. We ended up walking to a golf course and stood at the top of a green to catch the end of the show. And then it started storming.
Despite it all - the rain, the bad view, the seemingly insurmountable odds stacked against us - I remembered to bring bug spray so we didn't get eaten up by mosquitos. And before it rained, the evening was downright pleasant. I've decided to find at least 3 viable fireworks watching locations in advance of next year's show so that we won't be haphazardly picking a spot in the future.