'Nothing else better:' Campers stake out prime viewing spots ahead of lakefront fireworks show

MILWAUKEE -- The lakefront fireworks show is a little over 24 hours away -- but the celebration has already started at Veterans Park. People began staking out their spot early Tuesday morning, July 2.

Veterans Park

On Tuesday morning, the lakefront was covered in yellow and red tape. It's Milwaukee's way of marking territory for the July 3 fireworks show.

"We call what we do 'base camp,'" said Crystal James, a fan of the lakefront fireworks.

Since 7:30 a.m. Tuesday,  base camp preparations have been underway. Getting ready for 60 people to fill their area -- and putting the finishing touches on the party space.

"We usually have the tarps, the screen tents, they will have two sleeping areas. We'll get the grills set up and that's pretty much it," said Crystal James.

Crystal James

Making sure you have the best view for the fireworks requires planning -- but for the James' it's worth the effort.

"I know there's Summerfest and State Fair but this, I think, is where people come together and you enjoy each other for one common purpose," said Crystal James.

"This is the one point, one day out of the whole year that everybody just comes together," said Kory James.

The tradition goes back decades for the James' -- and they are happy the fireworks will be here to come back to at least through 2020.

"There's nothing else better than to come down here and have fun," said Kory James.

Sponsors who stepped up to save the show this year have agreed to a one-year extension for the 2020 show. County officials are still looking for a long-term funding solution.