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June 27, 2014
10 Top Bets for a Family Fourth of July!
Our Very Best Summer Vacation Ideas. Beaches, mountains, cities, theme parks, road trips, outdoor adventures... Get moving!
Dear family travelers:

All over the country, families will be celebrating Independence Day, in small towns and in big cities, with parades, barbeques and fireworks. Some 41 million of us will travel, mostly by car, at least 50 miles from home, AAA Travel says-an uptick from last year and significant 14 percent increase compared to the Memorial Day holiday weekend.

Here are 10 places guaranteed to please:

  1. Philadelphia's WaWa Welcome America is said to be the nation's largest free July 4th festival, lasting from June 28 thru July 4, complete with a Celebration of Freedom ceremony recognizing the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act. Stick around for more great events all summer.
  2. Boston Harborfest boasts some 200 activities, from free Freedom Trail Tours to the reading of the Declaration of Independence. Celebrate on Boston's Esplanade with concerts and fireworks July 3d and 4th. (Use my new Kid's Guide to Boston to help the kids lead the way!)
  3. Gettysburg's National Civil War Battle Reenactment lasts from July 4-6 . Here's what I wrote about a visit to Gettysburg last fall and the 150th anniversary of Lincoln's Gettysburg address.
  4. Join the biggest Independence Day family party in San Diego aboard the USS Midway Museum.
  5. Celebrate with bonafide cowboys at the Cody Stampede in Wyoming, just a little more than 50 miles from Yellowstone National Park.
  6. Head to Vermont for Stowe's Old Fashioned Fourth of July with Moscow Parade, Village Festival (ready to get dunked?) and the famous 7 Miles of Sales, Vermont's biggest town-wide retail sale.
  7. Cedar Point in Sandusky Ohio is touting two nights of fireworks and several other special surprises as a part of its Stars and Stripes Celebration. Military get in free!
  8. This year's City of Miami Beach Fourth of July celebration moves to North Beach for an all-day festival with food trucks, live music and, of course, fireworks.
  9. Besides the fireworks and music in the nation's capital, there's special Fourth of July fun at the National Archives, home of the original Declaration of Independence and the free Smithsonian Folklife Festival celebrating cultural traditions from around the world.
  10. Cherry Crest Adventure Farm in the Pennsylvania Dutch Country, opens July 4th with its Annual Amazing Maize Maze. There's a 15-acre Adventure Farm with over 50 family fun activities, games and rides , complete with Singing Chicken Show, Obstacle Course and Bucking Broncos

The hardest part will be deciding where to party!


Check out Eileen's new Kid's Guide to Boston available online and from major booksellers, the latest in her series of Kid's Guides. Follow @takingthekids on Twitter, Facebook and at www.takingthekids.com




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 Our Kids' Guides Series from Globe Pequot Press continues to grow. Now available: New York, Orlando, Washington DC, Los Angeles, Chicago and   Boston, San Diego, San Francisco and Denver are coming soon!


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