Skip to main content

Fourth of July activities everyone in the family will love

July fourth is one of the biggest celebrations in the U.S. Every American is familiar with classic Fourth of July activities, like parades, extravagant firework shows, and day-to-night cookouts. Check out these seven family-friendly activities you can enjoy on the Fourth of July.

Keep in mind that during times of social distancing, we want to be mindful of health ordinances.

Related Videos

Cook a meal together from scratch

When it comes to the Fourth of July, you have a few popular choices for preparing a meal. First, you can host a potluck. Second, you can let one BBQ superstar take the reins and cook for everybody. Or, if you want to get the whole family involved, try cooking a meal together from scratch.

family cooking

Include July fourth staples like mac and cheese, a salad of your choice, beans, and coleslaw. Perhaps the most fun part of the meal is dessert: Pie, strawberry shortcake, and, of course, s’mores for later in the day. If your family is up for the challenge, you can even try making your own ice cream, but note that you will need to freeze the ice cream for several hours.

The best thing about cooking together is that everyone enjoys it, especially young children. They love having cooking responsibilities and being part of something, so even simple tasks like stirring cake batter make them ecstatic. And just think: You’ll be done with the cooking in half the time because of all the extra hands.

Have a safe and thoughtful block party

If you’re friends with your next-door neighbors or the ones across the street, you can successfully pull off a social distancing block party. Each household can set up shop on their front lawn with a grill, portable table, and fun activities.

Pull out your outdoor speakers and blast some feel-good American tunes. While you’re all waiting for your food to cook, you can play games like charades, Taboo, hangman, or tic-tac-toe. One of the best group activities of all is having a big dance party while keeping a safe distance from each other.

Independence Day bingo

Another game you can play at your block party or at home is Independence Day-themed bingo. There are templates online for bingo squares with the names of U.S. states or presidents. For younger children, you can opt for 4th of July-themed pictures, like the American flag, firecrackers, and stars.

family laughing

Raise the stakes with a fun prize for the winner, and laugh as your game of bingo intensifies with each drawn number. A good thing about these novelty bingo cards is you can print them out at home and customize each card. There’s no need to run to the store for more cards, which is a big bonus!

July Fourth scavenger hunt

In your backyard, you can set up a July 4th scavenger hunt to keep the kids occupied as you lean back and enjoy a cold glass of lemonade. The clues can be generic and simple for younger children or larger groups.

On the other hand, you can make the clues a little more complex for older kids or if you want to keep the kids busy for just a little bit longer. These clues incorporate fun trivia about American history, and you can let the kids work in teams to make it more enjoyable for everyone.

As always, you can offer a prize for when they finish the scavenger hunt.

Cookie and cupcake decoration station

If your kids love crafts, they’ll love decorating their own sweets — sugar cookies are the best type for decorating. Leave out red, white, and blue royal icing in squeeze bottles for less mess. You can also lay out star-shaped edible sugar decorations, assorted colored sprinkles, and edible glitter.

And you know what else? You can whip up a batch of cupcakes, which are also easy to decorate. For these, you’ll need buttercream icing in squeeze bags or jars. Beyond decoration, you can host your very own Cake Wars and let your family vote on whose cookie or cupcake wins the best Fourth of July pastry.

Spoiler alert: Everyone’s a winner, and you all get to eat delicious sweets afterward.

Have a relay race

In your backyard, set up an obstacle course and have a relay race. One idea is to use the classic egg on a spoon game, but with water balloons. If you have two teams, fill two buckets with water balloons and place them both on the opposite side of the yard. At the starting point, each team has an empty bucket.
Each person must run to the bucket filled with water balloons and pick up a water balloon using a spoon. Everyone must walk back carefully without dropping the balloon and place it in the empty bucket. Each person takes turns until a team empties their bucket.

family in back yard

If there are not enough people for teams, you can compete individually in a classic game of sack race. We know not everyone has old-fashioned sacks lying around, so here’s an easy fix: Make a rule to only jump with your legs together at all times. Anybody who jumps with one foot in front of the other is disqualified.

Sing some classic patriotic tunes

Whether you’re outside enjoying your block party or hanging out in the backyard, blasting some patriotic songs is a good way to bond. Play “Yankee Doodle,” “The Star-Spangled Banner,” “America the Beautiful,” and other great classics you can teach your children on this very important day.

If your child is elementary school age, you can print out lyric sheets so they can sing along to your Fourth of July playlist.

There you have it — seven family-friendly Fourth of July activities everyone can enjoy. You may be hosting a virtual party with your family and friends or enjoying a BBQ outside with your neighbors while everyone stays on their front lawns. The most important part of the day is having a good time with your family. Fortunately, with any of the fun-filled activities on our list, you can celebrate the Fourth of July safely.

Editors' Recommendations

3 easy ways to get your kids excited (and learning) about Chinese New Year
Family-friendly ideas to get everyone excited about Lunar New Year
Mom and kids baking a cake

If your kids don't know a lot about Chinese New Year (or Lunar New Year) and you'd like them to learn a bit about the tradition, here are three easy ways to educate them and keep them having fun in the process. Chinese New Year is the biggest and most festive holiday celebrated by Chinese people, and it's right around the corner. It's a time for friends and family to gather together to bring good luck for the new year and do away with the old.

If you'd like to introduce the holiday to your kids, there are a few easy ways to help them understand the meaning and tradition behind the celebration and join in on the fun.

Read more
9 healthy air fryer recipes that will replace fast food and takeout
Forget expensive and unhealthy takeout - try tasty air fryer cooking
Mom making dinner using an air fryer

Busy afternoons following work and school often result in fast food or takeout for dinner. It's quick and convenient when the family is rushing around with activities and playdates, but it's not healthy. Of course, the kids love the takeout, especially when it's pizza night. Parents, however, understand the lack of nutritional value in fast food, not to mention the toll eating out takes on the family budget. Instead of opting for takeout on those busy nights, save eating out for special occasions and embrace air fryer cooking.

Making family favorites like fries, chicken tenders, hot dogs, and more in an air fryer are healthier than conventional frying in a pan or deep fryer. Even better is the plethora of healthy air fryer recipes that will make the kids forget about their favorite fast-food and takeout stops. If you haven't tried air fryer cooking, now is the time. So, what is an air fryer and why is it healthier? Let's find out.

Read more
6 healthy sheet-pan dinners that make cleanup a breeze
Learn to love your oven with sheet-pan cooking
Delicious sheet-pan dinner for busy families

Making home-cooked dinners is a lot healthier for the family and certainly budget-friendly, but it can be hard for busy parents to find the time. Dinner preparations and cleanup can be difficult when you're running off to practices and other after-school activities. Who wants to clean a sink full of dishes and pans after soccer and hockey practice? Lack of time is often why many on-the-go families opt for the convenience of takeout on those crazy weeknights.

Ultimately, home-cooked dinners are best for the family because they are healthier. However, not everyone wants to invest in an Instant Pot or a slow cooker to help get evening meals on the table quicker. There are other dinner options that don't take a lot of time or effort.

Read more