Fire on the Water

Want to take in one of the largest fireworks displays in the southeastern United States? Point your prow toward Norris Lake!

With thunderous fireballs and sparklers lighting up the night sky, America celebrates its official Independence Day every July. Did you know that one of the largest fireworks displays in the southern United States takes place on Norris Lake?

For the past 24 years, Sequoyah Marina in Anderson County, Tenn., has been making their Fourth of July fireworks show, dubbed Fire on the Water, bigger and better each year.

“When we started, we spent $150,” explains the marina’s Jim Jenkinson. “Now we are the second largest fireworks show in the state of Tennessee.” That’s pretty impressive, considering that the show is privately funded by the marina in conjunction with local sponsors.

Each year, boats filled with families and friends come from all over to Norris Lake (and East Tennessee) and start staking out their spots early in the day. Jenkinson says a few years ago they tried to get an estimate on how many boats were anchored in the vicinity of the marina for the show, but the count stopped around 5,000.

“I really think that’s a low estimate,” says Jenkinson. “There are many boaters who anchor in nearby coves and spend the entire day. Not only do we have a lot of people on the water, but parking lots around the area—including nearby Anderson County Park and as far away as Norris Dam—fill up for the show."

Jenkinson is also proud of the fact that the local community and its businesses see an economic impact from Fire on the Water. “We understand many of the hotels and restaurants, even in other counties, are full for the weekend because of our show.”

This year’s display is scheduled to blast off at nightfall on Saturday, July 1, and is expected to be the best display yet.

“For the first time, we’re using technology to computerize the firing,” Jenkinson explains, noting that it took about 35 hours of programming to synchronize the fiery blooms with music.

“For 23 straight minutes, we’re really going to light up the sky over Norris. People will be able to see it for miles around.”

Want to go?

Sequoyah Marina is about four miles northeast of Norris Dam.
336 Lakeview Lane
Andersonville, TN

Recreation season never ends, which means it’s always prime time for fun on the Tennessee Valley’s lands and waters. Not sure where to start? We have you covered! Check out some of the best recreational activities on our reservoirs. While you’re enjoying the lakes, trails, picnic areas and campgrounds, share your adventures using #TVAfun on social media.


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