You can watch fireworks in pretty much any American city on the Fourth of July, but there are only so many places you can celebrate the 238th anniversary of our patriotic rejection of British colonial rule – the Declaration of Independence – by floating trash down a river, demonstrating your prowess with a chainsaw, or just hanging with Willie Nelson. So if you’re looking for the best (and most uniquely American) ways and places to spend the Fourth this year, look no further.
Battle of Gettysburg Reenactment - Gettysburg, Penn.
This is one of the few events in America that doesn’t include fireworks, but commemorating the turning point of the Civil War – and remembering that the struggle for the future of this country didn’t end when the British left – has its place. With period music, live mortar demonstrations, and even a ladies’ fashion show, this three-day event is more than an exercise in somber remembrance of the 7,000 who gave their lives on the battlefield.
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