America’s 240th birthday is coming up and while you may already be thinking of ways to celebrate it, this is also the time to dig a bit of history on how our founding fathers struggled to achieve independence. “Taxation without representation!” was the slogan of the independence struggle of 13 American states that forcibly paid taxes to England’s King George III despite lacking any representation in the British Parliament. Growing dissatisfaction led to widespread outbreaks and July 4, 1776 is when the Declaration of Independence was formally signed by the nation’s founding fathers and accepted by Congress. The day is as much about the birth of the country as it is about the values it stands for – life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
Ever since the birth of our nation, this public holiday is nothing short of a festival in America – with the day being filled with patriotic parades, baseball matches, racing events and the night sky lit up with fireworks. Ahead of the upcoming Fourth of July, here’s a list of 5 fantastic ideas to celebrate the same.
#1 Salute the flag: It’s the day to wear patriotism on your sleeve – hang an American flag on the outside of your home, office, car, or wear patriotic themed caps, t-shirts, wrist bands, etc. There’s no dearth of fun ways to dress up patriotically – think flag painted nails, flag smeared faces, or cool accessories.
#2 Family cook-out: Barbecues are synonymous with Fourth of July celebrations. Plan an afternoon cook-out session with friends and family and gorge on the quintessentially American fare – hamburgers, hot dogs, fries, apple pie, and yes – the flag themed cake.
#3 Read the Declaration of Independence: It’s important to get the basics right – for yourself, your kids, and pretty much everyone. Get hold of a copy of the declaration of independence – it is easily available online, and read it out loud amongst a gathering of family and friends. What our founding fathers fought for is very much relevant even in today’s times – especially the pursuit of happiness which we tend to ignore, thanks to our hectic schedules.
#4 Catch the parade: Show your support by going to an Independence day parade – most cities organize one. Take in the patriotic sights, wave at the participants, and enjoy the sound of ‘happy birthday’ wishes all around. Some cities and towns also organize week-long Independence Day celebrations targeted at educating young Americans about the historical landmarks. You could get active and join any of these. The coastal town of Bristol, Rhode Island holds the distinction of witnessing the first ever Fourth of July parade celebration in America.
#5 Pop the fireworks: The magic of a fireworks-lit sky is a landmark of Fourth of July celebrations. Catch a fireworks show organized by your city or go to a coastal place – there’s nothing like enjoying fireworks by the bay.
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