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My Fourth of July Family Tradition

30 Jun, 2017 McKell Naegle

The Fourth of July, Independence Day, July 4th, or whatever you might call it – the tradition of celebrating this holiday is enjoyed by many, all the way back to the 18th century. During the American Revolution in 1776, representatives of the 13 original colonies struggled to find a solution that would grant them their independence from Great Britain. The Continental Congress voted in favor of independence on July 2, and two days later, the Declaration of Independence was signed.

From this time in 1776 until now, the Fourth of July has been celebrated throughout America as the birth of American independence. Although, I dare say that the traditions have probably changed quite a bit. Nowadays, typical festivities include parades, carnivals, barbecues and fireworks.

At least I know that’s how it is in my family.

On a typically Fourth of July, we start our morning with a parade. Growing up, we always went to a parade with my grandparents. As a kid, I remember few things as exciting as filling up a whole bag with candy. I mean, when else were my parents going to let me eat that many sweets?! Plus, there is a certain thrill about racing the other kids to grab it first and then trading with your siblings or friends later to get your favorite treats.

After the parade, my family would always go to my aunt and uncle’s house. A park was right across the street from their house which hosted a carnival and festivities all day long. We would play games, win prizes, ride rides and eat more delicious snacks, like snow cones and cotton candy. To top it off, we would have a huge barbecue with all of our family and friends that night where we would play games like soccer, Frisbee and (a recent favorite) Spikeball, and eat even more delicious food. Everyone would bring their best dishes and eat as many hotdogs or hamburgers as they could stand. This was always a wonderful time to catch up with family and friends and laugh until our stomachs hurt.

We would end the night by getting tons of blankets and all laying out on the front yard to watch the fireworks at the park. We always had the best seat in the house, watching away from the crowds. This is always a time spent cuddling with family, friends and loved ones while enjoying a beautiful firework show.

This is my family’s Fourth of July tradition. What’s yours?

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