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See our pictures of the Macy's 4th of July fireworks

Thousands of NYC families snagged a spot by the water—or in front of the TV—to watch the famous sparklers light up the sky over the Hudson River.

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Photograph: Grace Chu
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Photograph: Grace Chu
Macy's Fourth of July Fireworks 2013

The grilling, music and outdoor fun that define Independence Day in NYC are great, but we all know that they’re just a precursor to the main event—the Macy’s Fourth of July fireworks. This year’s show definitely delivered, giving us a pyrotechnic extravaganza over the Hudson that took more than 40,000 fireworks to create. This year’s show was curated by pop superstar Usher, who also mixed an original playlist that was broadcast on Z100 during the celebration. And for the first time, the Empire State Building made its own contribution to the yearly spectacle, putting on an LED light show during the fireworks finale that was synchronized with the colorful explosions. Missed it? No worries—scroll through our photos for a look at some of the city's patriotic families enjoying the jaw-dropping display.

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