July 4th is America’s Independence Day, a day to recognize the history and birth of our country. Red, white, and blue fill the streets as people gather with parades, BBQs, fireworks, and more festivities.
A national holiday since 1941, Independence Day actually dates back to 1776. The historic Declaration of Independence was drafted largely by former president Thomas Jefferson alongside John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Roger Sherman, and William Livingston after the Revolutionary War. This document was adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4th, 1776 and made a holiday celebrating American Independence. In 1870, the 4th of July became a federal holiday and 1941 is when it became a paid day for Americans to celebrate our nation’s independence.
Celebrating the 4th of July
The first official celebration of Independence Day was in Philadelphia in 1777. A 13 gun fire service, in honor of the 13 colonies, was displayed at this event and lit up the city which started the firework tradition. Today’s celebrations consist of parades with floats and bands, jet flyovers, summer BBQs, and the Macy’s Annual 4th of July Fireworks display in New York City.
Durango, CO Celebrations
Durango hosts a variety of festivities starting on July 1st including a Food Truck Celebration, Pie Eating Contest, Watermelon Eating Contest, and Live Concert / Silent Disco as well as an Apple Pie Baking Contest on July 3rd. Tuesday, the 4th, begins with an All-American Gourmet Breakfast followed by the Freedom 5K, BBQ Bands & Picnic, annual Stars & Stripes Parade, and finally the Street Dance & Drone Show (in lieu of Fireworks). There is also a weekend long Durango Scavenger Hunt, daily Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad excursions, and dinner & show at the Bar D Chuckwagon. Mild to Wild will be heading the 4th of July River Parade which includes patriotic wear and rafts! Learn about all of these upcoming events on the calendar here.
To the east, Bayfield is hosting their 116th Annual 4th of July Celebration including a parade, vendors, beer garden, cornhole tournament, and horseshoe tournament. Silverton throws a day’s worth of celebrations as well, starting with the Blue Ribbon 5K & 10K Fun Run in Memorial Park. This year’s parade is themed “Favorite 4th of July Memories” that is followed by a flyover, water fun for kids, firehouse BBQ, classic Volkswagen showcase, the Silverton Brassband concert, and annual Ducky Derby. Their firework display is not one to miss as they light up the mountain skies.
No matter where you are or what you’re doing for the holiday, we hope you enjoy. Please let us know if you have any questions about these local celebrations.