Foster City's 4th of July Fireworks: Where to Park, Where to Watch

Get all the details on Foster City's 2012 4th of July celebration and fireworks at Leo Ryan Park in Foster City.

While countless cities across California are cancelling 4th of July celebrations and firework displays, San Mateo residents can rest easy knowing a great show will be taking place right next door in Foster City.

This year's 4th of July celebration and fireworks display at , co-sponsored by the City of Foster City and the Lions Club of Foster City, promises to be a fun-filled day complete with games, food, entertainment, family and dog parades, and, of course, an incredible fireworks display.

The fireworks will begin at 9:30 p.m. sharp. However, the day-long celebration begins bright and early at 8 a.m.



Parking will be available at Parkside Towers at the intersection of E. Hillsdale and Shell boulevards for $10. Free parking will be available at City Hall, on the other side of the same intersection. Free handicap parking will be available at the Community Center/Library lot.

There is no event parking at The Marketplace (Safeway/Longs) parking lot, and a strict one-hour time limit will be enforced. Prohibited parking in red zones will also be strictly enforced.  Parking is also not available at the Recreation Center.

This event historically turns out a large crowd for the full day of activities and events that lead up to the 9:30 p.m. fireworks show.  Therefore, the community is encouraged to walk, bike, and carpool to Leo Ryan Park. There will be no shuttle service before or after the fireworks display. 

Attendees should anticipate that, due to the large crowd, it may take approximately 45 minutes to exit the area after the fireworks show.



As usual, Shell Boulevard will be closed to through traffic between E. Hillsdale Boulevard and Bounty from 7 a.m. until 11 p.m. on July 4. E. Hillsdale will be closed between Edgewater and Foster City boulevards from 6-11 p.m. Metro Center Boulevard will be open between Edgewater and Foster City boulevards.



The synthetic turf field at will be closed; however the boardwalk and surrounding grass areas will be open and available for fireworks seating.  The community is encouraged to take advantage of the entire Leo Ryan Park as well as the vacant lot across from the Recreation Center for fireworks viewing.

The firing line site for the fireworks show is located at the west end of Leo Ryan Park. The firing line site can be a dangerous area and will be fenced off. The City requests cooperation in keeping clear of the firing line and in not crossing the fenced area.



Alcohol consumption will be allowed in Leo Ryan Park until 5:00 p.m. After 4:30, the Lions Club beer sales will end.

Throughout the day, and especially after 5:00 p.m., law enforcement efforts will concentrate on minors in possession of alcoholic beverages and on persons whose behavior is disruptive or dangerous to others.



Both charcoal and propane barbeques are permitted in Leo Ryan Park.

Ashes and expired coals must be disposed of in the designated coal receptacle located east of the Amphitheater and south of the Meadow Stage. Coal can also be transported out of the park.

Under no circumstances can ash or coals be dumped or buried in the park. Empty propane containers may not be disposed of in the park.



The City of Foster City does not rent boats or any type of floatation devices. 

Electric battery-powered, wind-powered or person-powered boats are permitted in the Foster City Waterways for the purpose of viewing the fireworks. Gas-powered boats are not permitted.

All boats or floatation vessels are required to have lights. All California State safe boating laws should be followed and will be enforced. For safety reasons, all vessels must stay outside of the firing line. This “off-limits” space will be marked with a highly visible buoy system.

During the fireworks display, the waterway is often crowded and dark, increasing the potential for boating accidents. A City water rescue boat will be on the lagoon in the evening hours to enforce the fireworks display safety zone and to provide rescue services.



No Tarps on the Lawn - Tarps are not allowed on the lawn; only blankets will be allowed on grass areas. The heat that is captured under large tarps burns the grass below it. Pop-ups are allowed and encouraged over tents, as the heat captured under tents can be damaging to the lawn as well.

No Smoking - For everyone's enjoyment, this is a smoke-free event, and Leo Ryan Park is a smoke-free park.


For more information on the 2012 4th of July celebration and fireworks, visit the City of Foster City's website.


Do you plan to go to the Foster City celebration? Or, do you have other plans? Share them with us in the comments below!


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