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101 Ways to celebrate the 4th of July!

  1. Stationed in the DC Area? Plan a picnic; Sit on the stairs of the Lincoln Memorial and watch the fireworks above.
  2. Find a friend with a boat and sit in a lake so you can see the reflection of the fireworks!
  3. Invite an elderly veteran to your picnic and thank them for their service (our WWII veterans will not be with us much longer).
  4. Study the 50 States. Fifty States… do you know 50 State capitals?
  5. Plant a garden with Red (Petunias, geraniums, salvia, impatience, bleeding hearts to name a few) White (alyssum, geraniums, petunias, asters, daisies) and Blue (delphiniums, pansies, irisies) flowers.
  6. Write a Letter to a soldier stationed overseas. Checkout “A Million Thanks” (http://amillionthanks.org/) to find a drop-off location if you don’t have a service-member in mind.
  7. Make a large map of America on butcher paper or any large surface and highlight the states where you have lived, vacationed or family lives.
  8. Print out words to our national anthem and post them on the fridge.
  9. Thank a veteran for their service to our country which enables us to continually celebrate the 4th of July!
  10. Participate in your local parade, be a part of the parade either by marching or by standing on the side-lines and enjoying the patriotic display.
  11. Is there a local boat parade?  If you are near a lake this is a great way to get in the spirit.  Decorate your boat and join in the fun!
  12. Change your Facebook or Twitter status to celebrate the day. Don’t forget a special thank you to our veterans past and present that have preserved our freedoms as Americans
  13. Go for a swim. Take the family to the post or base pool or enjoy a swim in the backyard together as family. ‘Be a buddy: Swim safe this summer by teaming up'
  14. Give your young kids glow sticks for the fireworks. Glow-sticks can’t burn them!
  15. Bring the grill out to the front yard and have a neighborhood party!
  16. For those who are single, find a local bar/grill or small group to celebrate with others!
  17. Study the 50 States. Try to name them all.
  18. Go camping! (Remember to be Safe! ‘Take a walk on the safe side this summer’)
  19. Display your American Flag with pride. Put smaller flags around your mailbox or in your garden.
  20. Find your favorite red, white and / or blue shirt for the day
  21. Study the 50 States. Make up a blank map and try to put them all on the map.
  22. If you live near the coast-line head to a beach town! Most beach towns put on their own fireworks show over the water and there is nothing more beautiful and peaceful than watching the colors reflect over the ocean while breathing in fresh ocean air.
  23. Do you know an older person living independently who could use your help? Offer to help get groceries or mow their lawn, especially on hot summer days.
  24. Make sno-cones with the kids! Use crushed ice and then flavor with Red and Blue Kool-aid and plain ice for the white.
  25. Organize a collection drive for Operation Gratitude to send care packages to our deployed troops (http://www.opgratitude.com/howtohelp.php?page=individual)
  26. Visit A Local Cemetery and replace small-tattered flags with new ones for those who served our country valiantly
  27. Visit a historical site in your area. Learn more about the history of America, right in your own backyard.
  28. Involve the kids and make a Red, White and Blue Dessert - Perhaps something as simple as Red Jello, Cool Whip and Blue-berries.
  29. “Teach Your Kids About The Day. Go with them to your local library to check out books about the heroes who fought for our country. Take them with you to the parade, or to the cemetery to place flowers on a soldier's grave, and explain to them the concept of fighting for something bigger than themselves.” - Creative Ways To Celebrate 4th Of July - (http://www.lifewhile.com/family/19505157/detail.html)
  30. If your kids are old enough and local ordinances allow pull out the ‘Sparklers’. A FUN way to spend the evening. (Just remember firework safety! Sparklers are fire.)
  31. Is your unit / brigade / group having a BBQ? Attend! You might meet some new people and enjoy the festivities with other families like yours.
  32. Head to a local Baseball game; Minor, Major, or even pee-wee. What a great American Sport!
  33. Near Fort Hood? Head to ‘Freedom Fest’ (http://www.hoodmwr.com/freedomfest.htm). What is your installation doing for the 4th? Check with your MWR.
  34. Borrow or rent the video "America Rock", compiled parts of "Schoolhouse Rock". It is a fun way to convey history, with a great patriotic feeling. (http://www.amazon.com/Schoolhouse-Rock-America-VHS/dp/1569494088)
  35. Plan a white-water rafting trip! What a great way to get out and enjoy the beauty of the country we live in.
  36. Head to the commissary and buy a watermelon! Have a seed spitting contest with the whole family.
  37. Going camping? Bring some long sticks and have s’mores after the fireworks fade, the coals from the campfire will create their own glow!
  38. Tape flags to bicycles and watch them fly in the wind as you go for a great ride.
  39. Decorate your bikes with red white and blue crepe paper, watch the colors swirl as you ride. It is the best personal parade you could have!
  40. Red Strawberries, Blue (wild black) raspberries, White vanilla ice cream: Scoop up some patriotic fervor on a hot night.
  41. After the fireworks, should it be a cloudless night, gaze at the stars, the many millions of them and realize they were there before our flag was a thought… and will be for eons to come, may our freedom last too!
  42. Breakfast: (White) oatmeal (Red) strawberries (Blue) blueberries with a touch of brown sugar and walnuts make for a healthy heart start of the day!
  43. Buy an AAFES gift card for a deployed service-member. They can use them at their local BX/PX or a local concession stand at their base. (Now is the ‘Time’ to let troops know they are not forgotten)
  44. Get out of the house! Is there a Farmer’s Market nearby, chat with the folks. Become part of the community.
  45. As with any night on the town ... Do not drink and drive. If you need to drive, be sure to have a designated driver.
  46. Setting the table sets a mood and a great background for your meal. Use your white napkins and tie them up with red and blue ribbons!
  47. Do you love to stamp? Paper napkins are the perfect place to display your USA flag, stars or red and blue inks.
  48. Are you a quilter? Some of the red white and blue scrap material can fill a clear glass container and present a simple patriotic decoration!
  49. Bring in the flowers. Our nation is beautiful, America the Beautiful. So many are blooming now, fill a few vases with these gifts from the garden. Make sure you put a small vase in the guest bathroom… a special touch.
  50. Encourage your pre-teen and teenagers to think about their future as Americans.  Great neighborhood summer jobs can include mowing, babysitting, walking dogs; teach them to save for their future!  (Are you contributing to your TSP? - http://www.militaryavenue.com/Articles/Stick+to+Your+TSP+Savings+Plan-34089.aspx)
  51. Let the kids have a paint party…. Right outside, in the driveway! Collect some rocks, shells or pieces of driftwood. Creativity is just waiting to happen. Set the stars shine right there during the day. Be certain to put the artist’s initials and the year on the back. Spray with a protective coating and let dry.
  52. Take a walk, run, skip. Remember celebrations can bring out the kid in all of us… and Independence Day is a GREAT celebration!
  53. Before the big day, visit the library. Take the time to refresh your memory about our founding forefathers. Remember the sacrifices made and the great strives we as a country have accomplished.
  54. Read about military family issues at Our Letters to You so you can thank them and know how to help!
  55. Sing some of the grade school songs that you learned: Yankee Doodle Dandy, This Land is Your Land, You’re A Grand Ole Flag for example.
  56. Find a new trail, park, or hike to enjoy and invite a military family or friend along who has loved ones deployed!
  57. Ever kayaked? Canoe? Try something new! Most installation MWRs will rent them to you at a low price!
  58. Call a military family that you have lost contact with and relight your friendship!
  59. Find an old friend on Facebook, Twitter or other social media and wish them a Happy 4th of July!
  60. Sing patriotic songs: each branch of the military has their own song. Off We Go Into the Wild Blue Yonder, USAF; Anchors Aweigh, Navy; Caissons Go Rolling Along, Army; Always Ready, Coast Guard; and The Halls of Montezuma, Marines.
  61. Take a bike ride with a church group, BOSS or other organization to enjoy our beautiful countryside!
  62. Make a swing to play to on with some one who laughs a lot and likes a breeze in their hair! All it takes is strong rope and a nice branch! Or enjoy putting one together!
  63. Fire up the grill. Time for burgers and dogs! That sizzling sound and sharp aroma will enforce the feeling of fun for the day. (Out of the Fire: Keep safety top priority when eating under the stars this summer)
  64. Play a game of croquet! Or Bocce Ball! What fun! Find them in any large box store before hand!
  65. Build a bonfire in your fire pit or go to a park! Always fun to use for s’mores and hot dogs! Not to mention keeping late evening bugs away!
  66. Bandanas. They were made for the 4th of July! Wear some red white and blue... they even fit perfectly around your puppy’s neck!
  67. Ask your fire station or police department if you could bring them something to say thank you! A box of cookies or other goodies are always appreciated by these protectors!
  68. Are you finding time to just relax? Sometimes we forget to take time for that on a big holiday! Stay at home and find local events to enjoy!
  69. Browse through MilitaryAvenue’s other "101 Lists". How can you thank a Military Family today? (http://militaryblog.militaryavenue.com/search/label/101%20Ways)
  70. Keep America Beautiful.  At a park or even in your own backyard; if you see garbage pick it up and throw it away!
  71. Do you have a collection of candy from summer parades that you know will never be eaten? Contact http://operationshoebox.com/ to find out how to send it overseas to our troops.
  72. Start to plan a family-vacation for NEXT summer! A visit to a National Park or a beach-vacation. A little planning, and a year’s worth of savings will make it much more enjoyable.
  73. Stay cool at a water park! Bring plenty of sun screen!
  74. Know a family that has a deployed service member? Offer to watch the kids or take them out for ice cream and let mom or dad stay home for some off time!  (Or ask them to come along if they are craving adult-time.)
  75. Know someone in the hospital or bed ridden? They would appreciate a visit on a holiday when many are forgotten!
  76. Freeze up some homemade ice pops. Paper cups will hold your drinks as they form in the freezer. Just as it turns into slushy ice, stick in a plastic spoon for your popsicle stick!
  77. Put up a flag pole! A pole and a bag of concrete are easy enough to find! Be sure to use a level to get the pole straight! Tell young people why you are putting it up!
  78. Leave a message of encouragement for our military-troops and their families on MilitaryAvenue's Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/MilitaryAvenue
  79. Thinking Red White and Blue? Act green too! Use recyclable bags, grow that garden and can vegetables, walk when you can instead of taking a vehicle. It’s a good thing!
  80. Encourage your town, village, city to recognize our heritage with flags and other decorations on “Main Street”! Volunteer to put out “stick flags” along the road!
  81. Do some target shooting in a safe location! Teach someone how to safely handle a weapon if you are trained or take classes together! (THINK weapons safety this summer)
  82. White water rafting is wonderful over the 4th! Find a reputable company and enjoy the wild side!
  83. Take to the mountains or forest with family/friends for a backpacking trip! Carry an emergency kit and leave a route plan with someone reliable.
  84. Because you can read this, you can thank a teacher. America the Beautiful has an excellent education system, and you are a product of it!
  85. Ask around.  What is a great way to spend the weekend in your community?  What is unique about your new-community.  Remember the benefits of military-life is travelling and seeing things you have never seen.  Now is the time to take advantage of that!
  86. Play a neighborhood game of baseball with everyone invited! Make it kid and adult friendly for lots of laughs and kidding! Adults bat opposite handed and run the bases while hopping.
  87. One Nation Under God. Remember to thank God for our freedom, for our country, for our leaders, for our flag!
  88. How about a big water fight in the backyard? Invite friends to bring their squirt weapon of choice!
  89. Climb a tree with a child and enjoy the unique view of the world! Lower branches are fine but create a perspective that they will love!
  90. Join the kids in the kiddie pool.  Be a child again and they will LOVE the company!
  91. A Patriotic looking dessert can be beautiful and delicious all at once! Prepare a box white cake. When taken out of the oven use the back of a wooden spoon to poke wholes in cake. Drizzle prepared blue Jello in depressions, ice with Cool Whip and decorate with strawberries.
  92. Enjoy some time with elderly parents/grandparents! WW2 veteran? Thank them and ask them to tell you about their service or time at home alone waiting for their loved ones to return!
  93. Give the primary cook some time off with a restaurant or cook for them! Learn something new and open a cookbook!
  94. It is the beginning of summer! So much ahead! List some goals to be achieved: books to be read, hobbies to be started, places to go, menus to try. Life is so good!
  95. Run or walk in a 5k or other race with a patriotic theme!
  96. Take care of your pets with a walk or activity that is appropriate for them! Remember they may not like the fireworks, noises associated with our celebration!
  97. Invite friends and family to ride off road vehicles or other similar activities! Wear a helmet and watch the alcohol intake!
  98. Create a new plan for next year when time allows so the 4th does not catch you by surprise!  Coordinate to meet long distance friends in a half way spot!
  99. Let the kids become sidewalk artists! Great chalks are available at the BX/PX and or NEX.
  100. Help the kids set up a lemonade stand for the neighborhood! Think outside of the box, too. What about including homemade Sno-Cones or freezer pops?
  101. Bring your favorite lawn chair, picnic blanket, or beach towel; sit back and enjoy the fireworks! Remember the freedoms that we have as Americans and be thankful for those that work so hard to keep them for us.

Happy 4th of July from the entire MilitaryAvenue Team!
Play Hard, Play Smart and enjoy your American Freedoms every day!

3 comments:

  1. Food dye is your friend! Have a red white and blue breakfast. Red white and blue pancakes are great!

    ReplyDelete
  2. 4th of July… Show our American Flag!
    We are so blessed to live in the USA... to live in a place where we freely express our ideas and strive to respect our differences. We are bonded in our multi-faceted heritage. We have so many challenges and opportunities. Preserving our freedoms does come at a high price... we must honor all those who pay so dearly. So, let's appreciate as we celebrate this Independence Day!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Samantha (Sammy)July 1, 2010 at 10:59 AM

    We celebrate by padding one of our rooms, cranking a stereo (not too loud) and putting our dog in the room so they he doesn't go too crazy while the fireworks are going off. We put it on a country station so that atleast he can listen to some patriotic songs while he pants the night away... poor guy

    ReplyDelete

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