Thousands fill Hemisfair Park for fireworks display

Spectators brave heat for several hours to get a good seat

SAN ANTONIO – Ninety degree weather was not enough to keep thousands of people from packing Hemisfair Park Thursday for a chance to get a front-row seat for the Fourth of July fireworks display downtown.

"I'm looking forward to the big 'ka-boom,'" said Jose Mendez.

Mendez' family came in from Amarillo to see the fireworks light up the night sky.

"We've come to San Antonio pretty often, but the fireworks, it's a first time," said Mendez' relative Adrian Avila. "We want to come and see how it is here compared to over there."

For many of the families in the park the holiday is about more than a good light show. It's also a chance to spend time with friends and family.

Elma Espinoza's family drove all the way from El Paso to visit her for the holiday.

"This is the first time we're going to do the Hemisfair with family," Espinoza said. "It's really special for us and I know we're going to enjoy it and have a blast. It's going to be really fun."

As the first stream of light shot into the air the crowd let out a loud cheer, subsequently followed by the "oohs" and "ahs" normally associated with a fireworks display.

"We don't do things like this in Pennsylvania," said Samantha Shell, in town for an Army training program. "Everyone is having a good time, celebrating freedom. For my first time in San Antonio, it's pretty awesome."

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