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July 4th Tips To Help You Plan Your Families Fourth of July Activities and Celebrations

Updated on July 23, 2011

Every year on July 4th, American families are busy planning Fourth of July activities to celebrate their freedom and independence. It is an annual celebration to commemorate the courage and faith of our founding fathers in their pursuit of liberty. It also reminds us how important our military and veteran groups are to America.

Independence Day, July 4th

"It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more." - John Adams

Courtesy of the Wride family
Courtesy of the Wride family

Fourth of July Activities

Here are some great tips to help your family get into the 4th of July holiday spirit.

Throw a Fourth of July Barbecue/Pool Party - My family's 4th of July barbecue, when I was a young girl, would be centered around the "All-American" foods such as hotdogs, hamburgers, corn-on-the-cob, potato salad and deviled eggs with toothpick flags inserted showing patriotism. For dessert was always apple pie and a layered cake decorated to look like the American flag. Watermelon and lemonade were also on the menu.

Plan your menu and decorate your backyard with a patriotic theme. Buy tablecloths, plates and cups in red, white and blue. Make it a family affair, inviting friends and kids. Ask your guests to dress in patriotic colors.

At our barbecues, us kids would stay cool at the pool and for more afternoon fun we would play croquet, capture the flag and baseball. The father's loved to play horseshoes, while the mother's mostly chatted with friends. We would always have our barbecue early enough that we could still go to a nearby bonfire or firework display.

Take your family camping - When I was a young adult my cousin owned a campground where she would plan Fourth of July activities for all her family and camping guests. It was like my earlier memories of our backyard barbecues but on a much grander scale. We played a lot of the same games and many more. The kids would play any dam game they could dream up. The whole campground was their playground. I was at that awkward age where I could hang out with the adults or escape to play with the kids. Those were the days!

Plan a neighborhood blockparty - In my town, every 4th of July, there seems to be more people who are having blockparties. This is where neighborhoods block off their street from traffic to have an enormous neighborhood get together. Of course, before making this Fourth of July activities possible, you would need to have it approved with your town officials. Blockparties take a lot of planning but are also a lot of fun. This is a great way to meet up with old neighborhood friends and meet some new ones.

This is the library I went to in the 6th grade, now turned into the "4th of July Headquarters", Wilmington, MA
This is the library I went to in the 6th grade, now turned into the "4th of July Headquarters", Wilmington, MA

Check out your local and neighboring community events - The little town with a big heart of Wilmington, MA where I grew up has been serving their community since 1981. They formed a Fourth of July Committee in response to Wilmington citizens' wishes to continue the family atmosphere that was created by the Town's 250th Anniversary Celebration. The committee has never wavered from its original goal, which is to provide the people of Wilmington a first-class, six-day, fun filled, entertaining, and affordable event for all members of the family. There are many Fourth of July activities going on in most communities. Check them all out.

Visit the big city near you - Boston, MA is the big city near me and Harborfest is a favorite yearly destination for their 4th of July festivities. Fourth of July activities in Boston feature music from the Boston Pops Orchestra, an enormous fireworks display and much much more including the annual flyover by the 102nd Fighter Wing from Otis Air Base. So go into the big city near you and have a blast!

Take a trip to a family fun resort with waterparks for the kids and the young hearted - I found 3 resorts with waterparks that have something special planned to celebrate July 4th.

Castaway Bay, Sandusky, Ohio- a new resort with indoor waterpark. On July 4th, kids can "Picnic with Snoopy": create a craft, have lunch and be entertained by the Peanuts character.

Pointe South Mountain Resort, Phoenix, AZ - This all-suites resort has a fun outdoor waterpark called "The Oasis", with waterslides, wave pool, and river float; it also has a special rate and activities for July 4th weekend. The Fourth of July activities include temporary-tattoo booth, caricature artists, balloon artists and magicians, dive in movie at the wave pool, teen pop music concert, and a barbecue buffet.

Kalahari Resort, Wisconsin Dells - This resort has both indoor and outdoor waterparks. It starts its Fourth of July activities on July 3rd, with a "Clown Around" 3rd of July Party: a party for the whole family that goes all night, with live DJ, games and dance contests. The Fourth of July activities include clowns, talent shows, magician, juggling workshops, 4th of July Circus Parade, games, crafts, karaoke, movies, and a steel drum band at the Zambezi Outdoor Waterpark. At night, Kalahari is the only resort in Wisconsin Dells with its own fireworks.

So, what are you waiting for

It's never too early or too late to start your family planning for the Fourth of July activities and celebrations. Share your ideas with others and celebrate your freedom in style!



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    • Dottie1 profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from MA, USA

      Hi Sis...glad you could stop by for the celebration. Always good to see you. Lets go have fun at the waterpark!:)

    • ripplemaker profile image

      Michelle Simtoco 

      9 years ago from Cebu, Philippines

      Hey Sis Dottie, this activities are great! PLUS it could also be used for other family celebrations as well :) The photo of building of the former library you go to is so cute. :) Waterparks and bbq parties sound fun too. :)

    • Dottie1 profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from MA, USA

      Thanks for stopping by. Wishing you a "bang" this 4th of July Cgull.

    • cgull8m profile image


      10 years ago from North Carolina

      Great tips, I look forward to this Fourth of July, it will be fun. You guys have a great one.


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