PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Normally, as many as 500,000 people gather to watch fireworks in Pittsburgh on the Fourth of July, but rain kept the crowd smaller this year.

People who came to Point State Park to celebrate kept an eye to the sky as dark clouds passed over, and many people were armed with umbrellas or wearing ponchos.

Brittany Johnson of Jefferson Hills and her friends had staked out a spot to watch the fireworks, but given the rain, she wasn’t sure they’d stick around.

“We’ve been out for a little while. We were going to see if we can last that long,” said Johnson

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Even though there was more empty space on the green of the park than normal, there were still people playing catch. And of course, buying food at the food booths.

Pyrotechnico from New Castle designed this year’s EQT Flashes of Freedom Fireworks show. The theme was “Celebrate America.”

The show went on, but some fireworks shows in local towns were postponed because of the weather.

Despite the rain, the real reason to celebrate was not lost on people in the crowd. Justin Batson of East Liberty summed things up: “Independence Day. 240 years of being independent, so we decided to come out rain or shine.”

David Highfield