8 Fun Ways to Celebrate the Fourth of July

The Fourth of July holiday is the keystone to the summer season. It’s often filled with great American traditions like picnics, BBQ, festivals, parades, fireworks and family gatherings of all shapes and sizes.

In case you are not yet decided on how you will spend this day (or the whole weekend)….worry no more! There are many creative ways to create a simple celebration or join in some fun events that are already likely taking place in your town. The best part is that they don’t have to cost as much as a week’s vacation at the beach or require you to travel much further than your own back yard.

Let’s take a look at 8 fun ways you can make July 4, 2015 the best holiday yet:

Host a Potluck

Hosting a party can get quite pricey and require more planning and preparation than what most people would like to take on. As the host, you can provide a nice entertaining space (i.e. your porch or backyard) and allow your guests to help in many different ways to make your life easier.

A potluck is a great example of how to do this. Ask each guest to contribute a covered dish and a beverage. Your buffet table will literally make itself as friends arrive. Then you can take all the credit for coming up with the great idea!

backyard bbq summer cookout with white tents

Take a Hike

Want to be active and enjoy Mother Nature over the Fourth of July? Central Pennsylvania has some incredible hiking trails that provide more than enough miles to tire you out. Get a group of friends together to take part in this free and fun activity. Pack a picnic lunch or plan to meet at someone’s house after the hike to cool down and fuel up.

Watch Free Fireworks

When the sun goes down, the fun is just beginning! Putting on your own (even mediocre) firework show at home can cost you thousands of dollars. Instead, get out and enjoy the many different local community fireworks that will give you a 5-star performance at absolutely no cost. Keep in mind that the best seats in the house fill up quickly, so plan to arrive early or simply don’t worry about it and have fun wherever you find open space!

Make Your Own Outdoor Movie Theatre

On a warm summer evening, what better way to pass than time than by watching a movie…outside! Create your own outdoor movie theatre by borrowing or renting a screen and projector. Use your laptop to play a new hit or an old classic and invite the neighborhood! Have everyone bring their own blankets and snacks or rent some chairs. To make things extra cozy, rent a small tent and an old fashioned popcorn maker, too!

Get Festive at a Parade

Parades abound on the Fourth of July! If your town isn’t having one, there are likely several neighboring cities that will. Kick off your holiday with festive music, red white and blue décor and irresistible concessions that will make you feel like a little kid all over again.

Have a neighborhood BBQ Cook Off

Rather than every house in your neighborhood trying to throw their own Fourth of July party, combine this into one fun event where everyone can play a role. Challenge your friends to a BBQ cook off where each house fights for the title of best grilling skills. Guests can stroll around the block, sampling what each house has to offer and contributing a side dish of their own. This is also a great way to build friendships and expand your social circle!

Rent a small tent for your backyard and you will be sure to win some bonus points at your BBQ cook off!
Rent a small tent for your backyard and you will be sure to win some bonus points at your BBQ cook off!

Go Camping with Friends

Can’t afford a beach getaway? No problem! You can still get out of the house, enjoy the outdoors and spend undivided time with family and friends by going camping. Central Pennsylvania has a ton of local campsites that are very affordable. Sure, if you know someone with an RV that would be nice, but sleeping in tents or under the stars in sleeping bags will be a memory you will never forget!

Make a Backyard Waterpark

In Central Pennsylvania, the Fourth of July is a hot holiday for sure! Temperature often soar into the high 90’s which means any activity that will cool you down is a welcome retreat. If you have an open outdoor space and some creativity, you can have a waterpark at a fraction of the cost it would require to take all your friends and family to Hershey Park for the day – not to mention the lines and traffic! A hose, tarp, water balloons and squirt guns are all it takes to create a fun and refreshing holiday right at home.

How do you plan to celebrate the Fourth of July holiday this year? Share your unique ideas by commenting below!

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