Sunday, July 10, 2016
Bonfires and Fireworks, White Horse Beach, Manomet, Plymouth, Massachusetts, USA
The annual ritual of bonfires and fireworks at White Horse Beach on July 3rd, the day before the United States' Independence Day, is ready to begin on this beautiful summer evening. There were many fewer bonfires this year than in previous years - either the town is more discerning in issuing permits or folks are less interested in hauling the wood to build the pyre.
Mother Nature provided her own fireworks with this spectacular sunset.
View west toward Priscilla Beach.
As darkness deepens, the bonfires blaze away.......
.....shortly followed by fireworks along much of the stretch of beach from White Horse to Priscilla.
It is a freeform event with folks setting off fireworks up and down this 1.5 mile stretch of sand.
Massachusetts law says that it is illegal for private citizens to use, possess, or sell fireworks in Massachusetts, or to purchase them legally elsewhere and then transport them into the state. Notwithstanding the law, this anarchy is a longstanding tradition at White Horse Beach and reluctantly tolerated by law enforcement.
Law enforcement presence is high during the event to quickly gather up any misbehavers, usually fueled by excess consumption of alcohol.
Fireworks and alcohol - not a good combination.
Low tide had been at 4:30pm and high tide was due at 10:30pm so the beach was steadily shrinking as the evening progressed.
Exposures were mostly with a two-second shutter speed.
The view westward captures the last glimmer of the fading daylight.
There is very little parking available in the area and the main road is closed to non-resident traffic hours before darkness. It is a local event, if you don't live here and don't have a place to park, you are better off not trying to attend.
Another year, another celebration of the American experiment in democracy.