Fun Family Activities for the 4th of July

child celebrating 4th July

Looking for some ways to celebrate Independence Day for the United States of America with friends and family this year? Most communities will have events you and your family can participate in, so be sure to check local Facebook pages, talk to other community members, and look at announcements from nearby venues to know what activities might be available. And if you're looking for some classics, here are a few tips to set you up for success this Fourth of July! 

Fireworks

Possibly the most quintessential of all Fourth of July activities, what would Independence Day be without fireworks?

Tips for celebrating:

  • Noise-canceling headphones — fireworks are beautiful but also notoriously loud. The booms may be too much for little ones, who may find the sound more scary than exciting. Protecting their hearing and putting a barrier between them and the noise may be the difference between a terrifying experience and a magical night of wonder. 
  • Do it yourself — first, check the legal guidelines in your area to ensure you can have fireworks before lighting up the celebration. Once you know what is allowed, having a modest show in your backyard is a great way to set your own schedule, control the length and pacing, and ensure everything is tailored to your family's specific needs.
  • Opt for sparklers — a much toned-down version of fireworks, sparklers can be a great intermediary step for older kids who want a part of the action yet aren't old enough to set off the real deal. 
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Dress-up 

No better time than the fourth to don some red, white, and blue! Putting on a specific outfit can help set the day apart as something unique to help children recognize that the day is something special beyond any other summer day. 

Tips for celebrating:

  • DIY T-shirts — when it comes to Fourth of July t-shirts, Stars and Stripes forever! Cruise the internet on sites like Pinterest for cute ideas of Independence Day-themed designs you can whip up at home. A classic is to use a white t-shirt with a blue handprint and red stripes to make an American flag. You can also carve stars in potatoes and let kids go to town stamping their very own designs with red and blue paint! 
  • Face painting — Kids love face painting. There's something powerful about becoming someone (or something!) else for a moment. Many events will have face painting available, but you could also try this at home. Learn a few basic designs and invest in some nontoxic face paint to keep the party going with face painting.   
  • Decorate the house — while dressing up yourself and your kiddos, why not also dress up your home? Find some cute patriotic decorations for inside or outside the house, or consider making it an activity to make some homemade decorations with the kids. Making the decorations themselves will make them even more memorable and meaningful, especially if you save those decorations and use them for years to come. 

Barbecue

Hamburgers and hotdogs for all! Good times almost always mean good food. Warm weather is perfect for cookouts, and it's a great way for larger groups of friends and family to get together and celebrate over a meal. 

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Tips for celebrating:

  • Have variety — there's nothing wrong with the classics. Still, holidays can be a great time to mix up the ordinary with something extraordinary. Ask around to see if anyone has any Fourth of July favorites that you haven't tried yet, and see if you can find a new yearly tradition! 
  • Set yourself up for success — kids can be notoriously picky, so consider their tastes and what they will actually eat before you create a giant feast that will go to waste. 
  • Go poolside — While grown-ups may be happy to eat and socialize, kids can get restless once they've eaten. Having a pool or sprinkler set up nearby can provide memorable entertainment for all ages! 

The most important thing to remember is that there's no wrong way to celebrate any holiday! Despite the adorable pictures on social media with kids in matching outfits and coordinating patriotic props, the most important factor for any memory is fun and love. Neither can happen if you are stressed and frantic about perfection and unrealistic expectations. So take a step back and give yourself the freedom to enjoy Independence Day with the people you love most! 

 

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