JERSEY CITY - This year's celebration on the waterfront at Exchange Place is expected to big Jersey City's biggest yet with the draw of hometown rapper Akon and international superstar Pitbull headlining the show.
Akon went to high school in Jersey City.
The show, fireworks and an all-day carnival are expected to draw upwards of 250,000 people.
"We have the Statue of Liberty and the best skyline in the world," said Mayor Steven Fulop. "Every year we’ve grown it."
Today the stage was being set up with 100 lights, screens and speakers that will run down Montgomery Street and along the waterfront to give spectators a view of both the fireworks and about a dozen acts that will take the stage.
The celebration will begin at noon with food trucks, a beer garden, amusements and finally the fireworks over the Hudson River.
Entry to the festival is free.
Because it is expected to be crowded, people are urged to take public transportation. Security will be tight. No large bags will be allowed, as well as no coolers, umbrellas, chairs or alcohol.