NEW BEDFORD — The Fourth of July is already right around the corner and the Whaling City is gearing up for another entertaining fireworks display.

Mayor Jon Mitchell detailed the Fourth of July fireworks as well as other events happening around the city next weekend to the media on Thursday morning.

The fireworks display is scheduled for Wednesday, July 4, and will be set off at 9:00 p.m. The New Bedford Port Authority and Fire Departments will be staging the fireworks off of State Pier. Spectators planning to watch the display in Downtown New Bedford are encouraged to park for free in the Elm Street Garage and Zeiterion Parking Garage.

"We have been pleased to present over the last several years a really terrific fireworks show that draws a tremendous amount of people into the city and has never disappointed,” Mitchell said. “We've had a great run over the last few years and having a really fun, family-centered fireworks that has also been good economically for the downtown.”

Hawthorne Medical Associates is again sponsoring the fireworks display, and this year and presented the Mayor with a $10,000 check to fund the show, continuing a long-standing tradition of company sponsorship of the annual event.

"We are fortunate to have the continued funding commitment from Hawthorne Medical and it's been a great partnership with Hawthorne,” Mitchell said. “Hawthorne has given back to this event every year because Hawthorne recognized that these kinds of events create community. It brings people together in the most literal ways.”

Hawthorne CEO Joe Ciccolo says “We really enjoy giving back, and we do that in a number of ways. We have a community foundation, we have the scholarship program, and we love to sponsor certain events such as this.”

“We've been doing the fireworks for a number of years. We really enjoy it for a number of reasons. One is that it's tradition. It's the Fourth of July and the kickoff of the summer, so what could be better than that,” continued Ciccolo. “It gets people into the city and as the Mayor mentioned, it gets the community and families together to enjoy a spectacular evening in New Bedford.”

State Pier will not be accessible during the fireworks and there will be no parking on State Pier on the evening of July 4th. Lower Union Street (east of Water Street) will be closed to vehicle traffic and will be the best spot in the Downtown for pedestrians to view the fireworks display.

In addition to Hawthorne Medical Associates, other sponsors include St Anne's Credit Union and the New Bedford Whaling Museum, while Tucker Roy Marine Towing & Salvage and AGM Marine Contractors will again support the event this year by providing the commercial barge.