How to Celebrate Independence Day

In the United States, Independence Day (also known as the Fourth of July for the day on which it is annually celebrated) is a national holiday that celebrates the country's declaration of independence from Great Britain. Traditionally, many people celebrate this day with picnics, parades, and fireworks, though festivities sometimes vary by state and cultures.


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    Hang an American flag from your house roof, car, or your work building. Look for other places to display the flag, such as on your bike or scooter, a string of flags (bunting) for a party in your yard or local park, or a large flag hanging from a window.
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    Get a copy of the Declaration of Independence and read it. Read it to your kids. It's only about a page or two. It's one of the all time greatest documents and that makes great reading. Remember what we fought for and why it's still worth fighting for.
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    Dress up patriotically. Some citizens choose to wear clothes that have the U.S. flag design on them, or choose to wear the red, white and blue. You can have a lot of fun trying to look as patriotic as possible using just these colors.
    • Have someone to draw the flag on your cheek with washable finger paint.
    • Wear a flag pin on your clothes.
    • Paint the US flag on your nails.
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    Show your support by watching a local 4th of July parade in your community or city. Be sure to wear a hat, apply sunscreen and bring your own water, so that you're comfortable all day.
    • Get into the parade spirit by waving back at the participants or clapping as U.S. veterans pass by.
    • It's a good idea to bring a folding chair or blanket if there is a seating area.
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    Enjoy a barbecue or picnic with family or friends. Get together around at least 1 pm or so to spend the afternoon together. Traditionally, 4th of July food consists of:
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    Get active. Both on the fourth of July and the days around it, there will be a number of festivities, fireworks displays, and other fun you can join in depending on where you live. It's best to check your local municipality's website, or the site of event organizers for exact details. And here are some ways to get involved in the celebrations if you live near or can visit these places:
    • If you're in Boston, there are six days of celebrations: Take a hike along Boston's Freedom Trail, watch the annual turning of the USS Constitution, attend Chowderfest, watch the reading of the Declaration of Independence from the balcony of the Old State House, and enjoy the annual Boston Harborfest.[1] There's always the holiday concert by the Boston Pops at night plus fireworks.
    • If you're in Philadelphia, festivities last for around a week. Visit the Liberty Bell, see the historic sites in Independence Mall, and enjoy the 4th of July parade and fireworks.
    • If you're in Washington D.C., watch the National Independence Day Parade on Constitution Avenue and enjoy the fireworks displays above Washington Monument and the Capitol while at the grounds for the popular and nationally televised A Capitol Fourth, broadcast on PBS and AFN Television.
    • Visit Valley Forge National Park.
    • If you're able to visit Mount Rushmore, this is a great place to celebrate - see the fireworks and other commemorative events. Check the official website for details.
    • If you're in San Diego, head for Mission and Pacific beaches and watch the fireworks after dark.
    • For travellers to New York, make sure to attend the Macy's 4th of July Spectacular event, with live music from the US Air Force Band and Orchestra, fireworks and performances by US artists. NBC serves as the TV partner. If unable to go visit the National 9/11 Museum at the Ground Zero site to honor the victims of 9/11 and the armed forces fallen of recent conflicts.
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    Make crafts for Independence Day. If you have children, it's an ideal time to make crafts together to celebrate the day.
    • Make an American Flag Lapel Pin.
    • Make a Homemade Paper Weight and paint it with patriotic designs and colors.
    • Make a Greeting Card and use a patriotic theme and colors to design the cover and contents.
    • Make a Yarn Wreath using patriotic yarn colors.
    • Make a Glowing Star Lamp in patriotic colors and hang up at your celebratory party.
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    Pop fireworks or attend a fireworks show provided by the city at night. Most cities and towns provide a fireworks display of some kind. Check the information site of your city or municipality for details.
    • Check your local regulations for popping your own fireworks. Most states have laws against fireworks for personal use depending on the type or size. Some states also have laws pertaining to the time range individual citizens are allowed to pop fireworks; for example, most states require a cessation of firework popping by midnight or 1 am.
    • If you're a keen photographer, here are some tips on photographing fireworks.


  • If you are using public areas, such as parks or beaches, always remember to clean up after yourselves.
  • You can also dress up as presidents.
  • The 4th of July is considered a federal holiday. This means federal employees will get their normal pay rate, in addition to holiday pay. Private banks, all schools, most summer camps, and many non-federal businesses and offices are closed for this day in observance of the holiday.

Sources and Citations

  1. MSNBC, Top 10 Places to Celebrate Independence Day,

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