The Fourth of July is coming early to Boston this year.
Due to impending weather conditions on Friday, this weekend's Independence Day concert and fireworks show at the Boston Esplanade have been moved up a day from Friday, July 4 to Thursday, July 3, Massachusetts State Police and event organizers said in a press conference Wednesday afternoon.
"We are struggling with models and projections and probabilities, but we spent a lot of time leading up to this," Colonel Timothy P. Alben, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police, said in a statement Wednesday. "In our latest briefing form the National Weather Service, tomorrow, July 3, provides us the best opportunity to get the musical portion of the show and the fireworks tomorrow night off. Essentially what we're planning on doing is taking the July 4 show and moving it up to tomorrow."
The reason for the move is due to the threat of weather-related issues caused by Tropical Storm Arthur, which is expected to make its way up along the east coast through Saturday.
A Boston Pops rehearsal show was set to take place Thursday night, but organizers have cancelled that rehearsal and moved the actual concert and fireworks display up day instead. Alben clarified that no rehearsal is expected to take place Wednesday due to the chance in schedule. Attendees will be allowed to start entering checkpoints into the secure area on the Esplanade starting at 5 p.m. Thursday. Should weather on Thursday prove to be too hazardous, officials may reschedule the show to Saturday, July 5.
Commuters in Boston, meanwhile, are asked to seek alternate routes home from work Thursday, as Storrow Drive is expected to be closed by 12 p.m., while Memorial Drive, the Mass Ave Bridge and the Longfellow Bridge will be closed at 6 p.m., state police said.
MBTA Police Chief Paul MacMillan added Wednesday that those who plan to attend the festivities are encouraged to take public transportation, but should expect the transit system to be congested.
"We want people to exercise patience and caution when riding the T," he said.
Patch will provide more information regarding July 4 schedule changes as it becomes available.