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Fourth of July at Rusty Pelican: A View to Thrill (Photos)

It's true that where fireworks are concerned, there's not a bad seat in the house. After all, you're looking up at the night sky -- usually from a beach or a boat. But with so many cities offering fireworks, there are few spots where you can partake of more than one display at the same time. The 

Rusty Pelican

proves time and time again to be one of the best.

With sweeping views of Biscayne Bay, the Pelican offered Independence Night visitors an upscale barbecue buffet complete with a view of fireworks from at least three cities.

The restaurant's private second-floor party room was decorated in red,

white, and blue, complete with American flag

centerpieces. As a DJ played a mix of Top 40 favorites, guests drank

wine and beer and dined on an assortment of grilled favorites.

Highlights included firecracker shrimp, Jack Daniel's marinated

chicken, and mac 'n' cheese.

Around 8:45 p.m., an

excited crowd made it way to the Pelican's patio to find a

spot for the show. After a few teases of independent fireworks, the real

show started. The City of Miami came first (and lasted the longest),

followed by Key Biscayne and Miami Beach. In addition to the requisite

oohs and ahhs, people called out what they saw in each colorful

blast.

"It's a butterfly!" "That was a planet!" "Did you see a pumpkin?"

The

iconic restaurant has had a face-lift since last year's

celebration, but one thing remains the same: It's the best seat in

town for Fourth of July fireworks.

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