Tips for Enjoying the Fourth of July Holiday

When my children were younger, we would drive down to the levee in Baton Rouge and claim a space for the Fourth of July fireworks that would explode over the Mississippi River. The Baton Rouge Community Band would play patriotic tunes and blankets with families would dot the grass near the USS Kidd.

Fourth of July on the Capital Lawn

These days we prefer to relax at home on the back patio, grilling out and enjoying libations. We still play with sparklers (shhh) and throw poppers in the driveway. Fireworks are actually illegal in East Baton Rouge Parish, without a special permit, but there are always neighbors who light up the sky with colorful explosions, giving us a free show with minimal effort. Plus, by staying at home (if we aren’t on a trip somewhere), we’re staying off the roads. Here are some tips to help you enjoy the Fourth of July holiday:

Visit Washington, DC: A few years ago, my son’s high school band was invited to march in the National Independence Day Parade in Washington, DC. It was an amazing experience to visit my nation’s capitol during such a patriotic time of year. We visited a few of the Smithsonian museums, took a tour of The Capitol Building, walked past The White House, and after the parade itself, we enjoyed fireworks and a concert on the grounds of The Capitol Building.

Fourth of July Parade in Washington, DC

Check out: Top 5 Planning Resources for a Washington, DC Trip

Find a Hotel near a fireworks show: If you aren’t up for being a homebody, then take a quick trip to a local hotel that offers a Fourth of July Fireworks package. Here in Baton Rouge, The Hilton Capitol Center is offering a package that offers a fabulous viewing spot from the pool that overlooks the Mississippi River. Near Washington, DC, The Gaylord National Harbor offers a fireworks package with views of fireworks over the Potomac. Do you know of any fireworks shows and deals near your home?

Check out: Tips on how to photographs fireworks.

Visit Out-of-Town Relatives: Sometimes, we’ll travel to Huntsville, Alabama, where my grandmother, aunt, and her family live on a few acres. Since they have an amazing swimming pool, they always host a Fourth of July cookout with good food, swimming, and fireworks for the kids. We can’t make it there every year, but when we do, it’s always a relaxing good time. Plus, visiting relatives is an inexpensive way to take a trip and still get quality time with those you miss.

Take a Camping Trip: Most campgrounds offer Fourth of July games and events onsite for families camping during this holiday. Many campgrounds are located near lakes or streams and some even have water slides and swimming pools. Families grill at their campsite while the kids make friends with each other.

Family camping in Louisiana at Kisatchie National Forest | image (c) Shannon Hurst Lane &

Check out: Camping with Rayovac Outdoor Lights

Relax at Home: I prefer not to travel during Fourth of July, only because it is one of the busiest travel weeks of the entire year. Sometimes, I’m scheduled to work at my full time job on this holiday, but this year I happen to be off. Little CajunMama is currently visiting relatives, but the rest of our family unit will be relaxing on the back patio, grilling a variety of meats, and enjoying cool libations in the comfort of our home.

Back porch snacks for Fourth of July cookout

How will you enjoy this Fourth of July Holiday?

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