231st Independence Day celebrated in United States

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Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Fireworks in San Jose, California on July 4, 2007
Image: Ian Kluft..

Many of the 302 million people living in the United States celebrated Independence Day today.

Formal observations

There often are public ceremonies and declarations by officials.

  • President Bush's Independence Day message was:
    "I send greetings to Americans everywhere celebrating Independence Day.
    "Two hundred thirty-one years ago, 56 brave men signed their names to a bold creed of freedom that set the course of our Nation and changed the history of the world. On this anniversary, we remember the great courage and conviction of our Founders, and we celebrate the enduring principles of our Declaration of Independence.
    "Through selfless sacrifice and unrelenting determination, the patriots of the American Revolution ensured that our Nation's claim to liberty and equality would not be dismissed or forgotten. The ideals they fought for and the country they helped establish are lasting symbols of hope to the entire world.
    "Our commitment to America's founding truths remains steadfast. We believe that freedom is a blessing from the Almighty and the birthright of every man and woman. As our Nation faces new challenges, we are answering history's call with confidence that our legacy of freedom will always prevail. On Independence Day, we express our gratitude to the generations of courageous Americans who have defended us and those who continue to serve in our country's hour of need, and we celebrate the liberty that makes America a light to the nations.
    "Laura and I wish you a Happy Fourth of July. May God bless you, and may He bless our wonderful country."
  • Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi promised to make the day "Energy Independence Day".

Public events

Neighborhood parade gathers behind a fire truck
Mount Rushmore, July 3, 2007

There were many public events, including parades and public festivals with various entertainment and food attractions.

Fireworks

The day is traditionally celebrated with fireworks, often with large performances by social and government organizations.

  • Cancellation of Mount Rushmore's July 3 fireworks show was considered due to dry conditions, but it was decided at 9 p.m. to proceed. 5,200 shells and pyrotechnics were used in the 27 minute show. The fireworks were preceded by a day filled with music and dance for visitors at the park.
  • The finale for events in the nation's capitol was musical events, with cannon fire by the U.S. Presidential Salute Battery, and a fireworks display.
  • The Boston Pops 2007 event was on the Esplanade in Boston, with a concert preceding a fireworks display.

Family activities

Backyard barbeque

Occurring well into summer, this federal holiday was celebrated by many during family events and activities. It was expected that many would take vacation time from work during the week, particularly as the holiday being in mid-week allows five days of vacation by only taking two days off from work. Among the activities of July 4th, the most common activities are picnics in the daytime, barbeques at evening, and fireworks at night.

In recent years, more and more Americans have gained interests in setting off their own fireworks. Consumer fireworks are banned in many places due to their perceived dangers, but fireworks enthusiasts cite that fireworks are safe when used properly. According to the CPSC, the amount of imported fireworks have roughly tripled during the last ten years, while the rate of injuries has gone down.

Sources

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