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Club Chronicles: Don’t forget July Fourth’s historical significance

Tomorrow marks the 243rd birthday of the United States of America.

Although July 2, 1776, marked the formal separation of the 13 colonies from Britain colonialists, the Declaration of Independence was officially signed July 4, 1776. Independence Day is a national holiday, known simply as July Fourth, which is marked by patriotic displays.

The United States marked its first birthday July 4, 1777, with 13 gunshots fired once in the morning and again in the evening in Bristol, Rhode Island.

People across the United States celebrate this most significant holiday honoring the United States by displaying our country’s flag. The first flag was introduced in 1777 with thirteen stripes and thirteen stars that represented the thirteen colonies as a new constellation. The colors of the flag have special significance: red for hardiness and valor; white for purity and innocence; and blue for vigilance, perseverance and justice.

Now, the 50 stars represent the 50 states of the United States, and the 13 stripes represent the original 13 colonies that declared independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain.

Many civic organizations, veterans, military, volunteers, individuals and national, state and local leaders sponsor or assist with parades, fireworks displays, barbecues and musical entertainment celebrating the birth of our nation.

Held since 1785, the Bristol Fourth of July Parade in Bristol, R.I., is the oldest continuous Independence Day celebration in the United States. New York City has the largest fireworks display in the country, with more than 22 tons of pyrotechnics exploded on the East River.

Alabama’s largest Fourth of July celebration will again ignite the sky atop Red Mountain at Vulcan Park with an array of fireworks in honor of both the state’s bicentennial and our nation’s birthday. July 4, the City of Birmingham welcomes the state to visit and watch a breathtaking show in honor of those who have fought for our country’s independence.

There are other firework displays in our city and surrounding areas. As we celebrate this major milestone for our country, remember the significance and those who gave their lives for our nation and for our freedom.

Club Chronicles is written by Susie Hovater Malone.