Inaugural Newport Blast Planned for July 3 to Celebrate Independence Day

New event presented by meetNKY, Newport on the Levee, and BB Riverboats with logistical support from the City of Newport


NEWPORT, Ky. (May 30, 2024) – This summer, meetNKY (the Northern Kentucky Convention and Visitors Bureau), Newport on the Levee (The Levee), and BB Riverboats are partnering with the City of Newport to bring a brand-new Independence Day celebration to Northern Kentucky. Dubbed “Newport Blast,” the event on July 3 will be held at The Levee, where guests will experience the spirit of Americana with a carnival-themed extravaganza followed by a Rozzi Fireworks and Drone Display.

“Newport Blast will be the perfect way to celebrate Independence Day Weekend in Northern Kentucky,” said President and CEO of meetNKY, Julie Kirkpatrick. “Visitors from both sides of the river are invited to enjoy the many restaurants, shops, and unique places Northern Kentucky has to offer. Newport will be the premiere backdrop for an unforgettable weekend, and we are hopeful it will become everyone’s new Independence Day tradition.”

The debut event will feature roaming stilt walkers dressed as Uncle Sam and the Statue of Liberty, live music by classic cover rock band DV8, juggling magicians, games, a stars and stripes inflatable slide for children, fireworks, and more, including a hot dog eating contest. Participants will compete to win a Levee Staycation prize package that includes a one-night stay at Aloft, Levee-branded swag, and gift cards to a collection of onsite businesses.

Throughout the evening, guests are encouraged to dine at one of The Levee’s many restaurants, such as Amador, The Galley Food Hall, and Shiners. Thanks to its recognition as an entertainment district, to-go drinks can also be purchased from any of the bars like Beeline, Kon Tiki, or 16 Lots and enjoyed anywhere on the property.

“Fireworks are a time-honored tradition of summer, and we can’t wait to bring revelers together to experience this new spectacle in Newport’s Living Room,” said The Levee’s Marketing Manager Cassie Pennington. “Our team is so excited to have the opportunity to host the inaugural Newport Blast and can’t wait to make photo-worthy memories with guests from across the region.”

While Newport Blast is free to attend, BB Riverboats will offer three ticketed cruise options to coincide with the event. Ticket holders will enjoy a delicious buffet dinner before settling into the unmatched, best seats in the city for the fireworks show, which guests will feel as much as they’ll see. Musical entertainment will also be provided, and all seating must be reserved in advance.

“BB Riverboats is inviting the community to celebrate our nation's birthday with a good old-fashioned, all-American Fireworks show overlooking our beautiful skyline,” said Terri Bernstein, Owner of BB Riverboats. “Our cruises will give visitors an amazing, up-close view of all the festivities and is set to be a very special experience.”

The Levee will be activated from 5 to 10 p.m., while the BB Riverboat cruises will run from noon to 11 p.m. Rozzi’s Fireworks and Drone Display will begin at 10 p.m. 

“We’re happy to host another great event for the community in our city,” said Newport Mayor Tom Guidugli Jr. “The riverfront community is now brimming with dining options and festivities. For all it has become, the best is yet to come for Newport.”

More information about Newport Blast and the full schedule of events can be found at Tickets for the Newport Blast cruises can be purchased at


About meetNKY
meetNKY drives quality of life and economic growth for Northern Kentucky through tourism marketing and destination development. Learn more at

About Newport on The Levee
Originally opened in 2001, Newport on the Levee (The Levee) is a multi-level mixed-use destination nestled along the Riverfront Commons trail and overlooking Northern Kentucky’s riverfront. North American Properties (NAP) purchased The Levee in December 2018 and redeveloped the property as a family-friendly entertainment destination, unveiling a reimagined experience in May 2021. The “new” Levee offers visitors the opportunity to spend a full day soaking up everything from shopping to dining to gaming and more, all while enjoying spectacular views of the Ohio River and downtown Cincinnati. Today, The Levee is home to a collection of recreational offerings such as the 20-screen AMC Theatre, Newport Aquarium, and Velocity Esports; TRADE™, a revolving artisan market; experiential retail, destination dining, and creative office; and over 200,000 square feet of gathering space. NAP owns The Levee and oversees management, retail leasing, and parking services.

About BB Riverboats
BB Riverboats is one of Cincinnati's top attractions and has served the Greater Cincinnati area for over four decades. It specializes in lunch, sightseeing, and dinner cruises on the beautiful Ohio River. Both authentic riverboats are available for private charter, and each boat has smaller private rooms to accommodate groups of all sizes. Come and see why everything is better on the river!