4th of July Celebrations

Why do we celebrate the 4th of July? 

Imagine how you would feel if someone older than you (maybe an older sister or brother) kept telling you what to do all the time and kept taking more and more of your allowance. That is how the colonists felt in the years leading up to 1776. Great Britain kept trying to make the colonists follow more rules and pay higher taxes. People started getting mad and began making plans to be able to make their own rules. They no longer wanted Great Britain to be able to tell them what to do, so they decided to tell Great Britain that they were becoming an independent country. (To be independent means to take care of yourself, making your own rules and providing for your own needs.)

The Congress met in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and they appointed a committee (a group of people working together to do a specific job) to write a formal document that would tell Great Britain that the Americans had decided to govern themselves. The committee asked Thomas Jefferson to write a draft (first try) of the document, so he worked for days, in absolute secret, until he had written a document that he thought said everything important that the committee had discussed. On June 28, 1776, the committee met to read Jefferson’s “fair” copy (he put his best ideas together and wrote them neatly.) They revised (made some changes) the document and declared their independence on July 2, 1776. They officially adopted it (made it theirs) on July 4, 1776. That is why we call it “Independence Day.”

Americans celebrate that freedom and independence with barbecues, picnics, and family gatherings.  Please find below a list of locations near where you may work that you can view fireworks, join a picnic or create your own.

OCEAN CITY MARYLAND North

Enjoy a free concert at 8 p.m., followed by fireworks at 9:30 p.m. uptown at 127th Street at Northside Park. For more information, please call 1-800-626-2326 or the Ocean City Department of Recreation & Parks at 410-250-0125.

OCEAN CITY MARYLAND South

Enjoy a free concert at 8 p.m., followed by fireworks at 9:30 p.m. downtown on the beach at North Division Street. For more information, please call 1-800-626-2326 or the Ocean City Department of Recreation & Parks at 410-250-0125.

COROLLA, NC – Outer Banks

The Corolla Annual Independence Day Festival of Fireworks will begin at 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at The Whalehead Club.  Fireworks begin at dusk but arrive early to enjoy food, fun activities, fabulous music and find a place for your blankets and chairs to settle in for the best fireworks on the Outer Banks! Admission and Parking are free. For more information visit www.whaleheadclub.com or call (252) 453-9040.

NAGS HEAD and KILL DEVIL HILL AREA, NC – Outer Banks

Town of Manteo – Outdoor Pavilion at Roanoke Island Festival Park. 8 p.m. Featuring the North Carolina National Guard’s 440th Army Band. The performance is free and open to the public. (252) 475-1500 or roanokeisland.com

DUCK, NC – Outer Banks

9 a.m. Duck’s seventh annual Fourth of July Parade will be held on Monday, July 4, 2011 at 9:00 a.m., with an after-event following at the Duck Town Park featuring community fun, music, watermelon, and the awarding of parade trophies. The one-mile parade route is the same annually and begins at the crest of the hill on Scarborough Lane and continues down Ocean Way and then Christopher Drive. Please plan to arrive at least 1/2 hour early to get the best parade viewing spot! (252) 255-1234, info@townofduck.com, townofduck.com

WELLFLEET, MASS – Cape Cod

9 a.m. Parade (starts at the Town Pier)  This year’s theme is ‘HAPPY 50th BIRTHDAY TO THE NATIONAL SEASHORE’  (chosen by children at the Wellfleet Elementary School). Fireworks are in Provincetown at 9:00pm

NEW YORK CITY

The 2011 Macy’s will begin at approximately 9:20 pm on July 4th, the 26-minute display will be set off from six barges positioned between 20th and 55th Streets on the Hudson River. That’s two full miles of sky, providing for greater visibility of the show for millions more spectators. On the West Side of Manhattan.

LifExchange wishes you a safe and happy holiday!!!!

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