Thousands of visitors and locals hoping to catch the firework display at Hemisfair Park downtown last night were not disappointed by the lingering threat of thunderstorms.

Long before the first explosion, I arrived early and had some time to burn so I took a stroll into one of my favorite neighborhoods, Southtown. Walking down the unusually calm streets for a First Friday evening, I was able to check in with local restaurants like Alamo Street Eat Bar and the recently-opened Starfish, serving up seafood cuisine.  I also strolled by B&D Ice House just to catch a whiff of the smoked mouth brisket.

As night fell, many people started arriving to stake their claim near The Tower of Americas for the big show.  Multiple cheers and howls were heard throughout the display and into the night long after the smoke from the official fireworks had cleared.

Happy birthday, America.

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Scott Ball

Scott Ball is San Antonio Report's photo editor and grew up in San Antonio.