In our neighborhood on Capitol Hill there are a few really nice places to view the Fourth of July fireworks. First we started at the Capitol grounds, passed through security, and reached the west lawn just in time for Barry Manilow. This year there were no free water bottles, but there was a sink/trough for folks to fill their own water bottles. Sequestration? Then we headed to the US Botanic Gardens facing the Capitol where all the seats were taken, and several picnics were in process. Last year we stood almost next to the canons by the reflecting pool. This year that area was blocked off with guard dogs patrolling. All the cross streets were also blocked off by buses allowing people to pass without traffic concerns and were lined with visitors of all shapes and sizes. The Mall itself was packed from the Capitol to the Washington Monument. There were several people on the balcony of the house Office Building overlooking the Bartholdi Fountain Garden along Independence Avenue. A lot of locals were stretched out next to the fountain, including us. When the fireworks started, Independence Avenue was jammed with concert goers rushing from the Capitol Grounds to the metro stop. It was a beautiful evening... Breezy, pleasant, and entertaining. The best part was that when it was over, we walked two blocks home and watched the taped show on TV.