How to Celebrate Fourth of July in New York City

Independence Day is coming up fast, and there will be plenty of celebrating and partying to be done throughout New York City. We already looked at some top spots in town for watching the Macy's Fourth of July fireworks–which have returned to their East River home after several years over the Hudson—but there are plenty of other events to try. Here are some suggestions from Time Out New York

Nathan's Famous Fourth of July Hot Dog Eating Contest
This Coney Island eating competition is an annual tradition. Top speed eaters from this year’s preliminaries, held in 12 cities nationwide, will vie to see who can eat the most hot dogs in ten minutes. Bonus: We hear Preshow entertainment includes performances by rapper Eric "Badlands" Booker and other local talent.  

Revolutionary War Nighttime Walking Tour
A great pick for night owls, this tour runs (well, walks) from 3 a.m. to sunrise through lower Manhattan. A tour guide will explain the city’s importance during the revolutionary war. Grab tickets early! 

Foraging in Forest Park with “Wildman” Steve Brill
Steve “Wildman” Brill will take amateur and expert nature enthusiasts on a tour through Forest Park in Queens, looking for Blackberries, lily flowers, herbs and mushrooms.  

54 Below Sings 1776

And those who love musical theater will want to head to 54 Below for a concert performance of American classic 1776 on June 3 and 5 (leaving the fourth free for fireworks-watching or Forest Park-foraging). Several Broadway luminaries will sing numbers from the 1969 musical and the 1972 movie, including the popular "The Egg" and "Is Anybody There?" 54 Below Sings 1776 will play four performances only: Thurs. July 3 at 7PM and 9:30PM, and Sat. July 5 at 7PM and 9:30PM. To make a reservation, visit www.54below.com.  Cover starts at $50, and there is a  $25 food & beverage minimum.