Several years ago I followed the advice I'd read on several websites and brought my tripod when we went to watch fireworks. I wanted to capture some nice shots of the display and I'd read that the tripod was essential to getting shots of the trailing lights as the shutter would need to remain open longer than you can hand-hold the camera still.
What I found is I spent so much time messing with the tripod and worrying about people knocking into it that I missed out on enjoying the show. Using a tripod, I was also locked into photographing one location in the sky. It was a good experience but not one I have cared to try again since.
The past 2 years, I took my camera but left the tripod behind. Instead, I plop down in one of our collapsible chairs right beside the rest of my family, rest the heel of my foot on the seat, and stabilize my camera on my knee. Pretty technical stuff.
Doing this, I was able to set my shutter speed to 1.3 seconds and still get pretty clear images. Good enough for my scrapbooks!
Since my camera wasn't locked down to a tripod, I was able to adjust my camera to the location of each shot in the sky.
And since my butt was locked down to a seat right next to Will, I was able to watch his face and hear his commentary. There's nothing better about a fireworks display than that.