Summer Fun: 4th of July

by Catherine Sweeney, Creative Circle
July 1, 2015

Have lots of fun this Fourth! Pick your ideal fireworks watching location, then enjoy a relaxed day of play and picnicking.

Seattle – Lake Union Fireworks, 12 pm – 11 pm
Avoid traffic snarls and ride your bike to Gas Works Park, right off the Burke-Gilman trail. From noon on, you’ll find live music, outdoor games and a beer garden with trivia.  Prefer some time on the water? Head to South Lake Union for free rides in historic boats at the Lake Union Wooden Boat festival, along with Quick and Daring Boatbuilding—build and race your own boat in 24 hours!  Explore food booths and hear more live music at nearby Seafair events.

Looking for festivities and fireworks but a slightly smaller crowd? Check out Fourth of July activities in neighboring communities, from Kirkland’s multiple parades—including a Kid’s Parade— to face-painting, inflatables and more at Renton’s lakeside Gene Coulon Park.  Or head north to Everett for a community parade, and picnic waterside at Legion Memorial Park until it’s time to light up the sky.

Picnic treats
Make some easy-pack foods that are creative and colorful too.

  • Nostalgic for deviled eggs? Surprise your friends and family with red, white and blue ones! Try out this recipe from blogger Valerie Davis.
  • Use a star-shaped cookie cutter to cut watermelon into shapes, then make a red-white-and-blue fruit salad.
  • Bring individual cherry and blueberry star pies in glass jars (available at Goodwill). 

Park play
Pick up picnic baskets, coolers and blankets at your local Goodwill, and look for Frisbees and balls for playing in the park.  Other outdoor play ideas include:

Gigantic bubbles keep all ages entertained and even help you make new friends. Try out this recipe from Ginger Snap crafts, which includes an easy-to-make bubble wand. Old kitchen utensils with holes —like potato mashers—produce tons of bubbles.

Our open, waterfront parks are ideal for kites, especially if you arrive before the late-afternoon Fourth of July crowds. Check Goodwill for kites, or make your own out of a plastic bag.

As dusk begins, submerge glow sticks in filled, capped water bottles. Do some night-time bowling while you wait for the fireworks. Then, get ready to gaze up and be amazed. Happy Independence Day!


Catherine Sweeney, APR is a professional writer and communicator affiliated with Creative Circle. She dedicates her Goodwill blog-writing in memory of her mom, an avid thrift-shopper and advocate for social change. 

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