It's a day of fireworks and barbecues as America celebrates its 237th birthday, and here at home, the City's Big Bang Celebration officially kicked off with a parade.
Drummers, floats, cars, trucks and some of our nation's heroes, all decked out in red, white and blue, made their way down Shoreline Boulevard Thursday morning. A furry friend even got into the celebration as well.
Our sister station, MeTV, were there in their classic Volkswagen van to have a "groovy" good time, too.
The parade appeared to be a huge success as hundreds upon hundreds of people lined up along the parade route to celebrate our Independence Day.
"It's wonderful," Crystal Fernandez said. "I have a young Marine in the parade."
"It's really nice. That's why I came out here," said Janine Henze, a visitor from Berlin. "In Germany, we don't have a Fourth of July, in that matter, but yeah, it's nice. It's nice."
"Beautiful weather for a Fourth of July parade," Cindy Hindman said.
"We're Americans and we are free, and hey! We are USA!" Cynthia Chavez said. "America!"
Many spectators said they enjoyed the parade because it brings the community together to remember this national holiday.
The fun didn't stop there, however. Parents were able to take their kids just a few blocks away, at Kinney and Shoreline, to have fun at the Kid's Zone. Plenty of activities were on hand there for children, like face painting, rock climbing and even a train ride to shuttle them around the area.
"We went on all the moon jumps, and the little train," young Kaylie and Alexica said.
Fourth of July events took place throughout the city. An official observance was held Thursday morning at Sherrill Park, honoring our military men and women who served past and present.
The event honored those who paid a heavy price for their bravery and gave the ultimate sacrifice. It drew a large cross section of military members and their families, along with dignitaries and people from all walks of life.
"We made this country the best country in the world," Marine Corps Veteran Kenneth Matthews said.
"I just love it to death, and I think this country should always stay together," Marine Corps Veteran Bob Miller said.
"I went in as a volunteer because of my country, and this is the reason for it," Air Force Veteran Florentino T. Sheldon said.
More than 200 were on hand for the solemn Fourth of July ceremony.
People have also been getting ready for Thursday night's fireworks and Harbor Bridge light show. Kiii News Reporter Brian Burns went Live from the seawall with a look as the crowds began to gather for the celebration.
Meanwhile, some celebrated this Fourth of July with a day at the park, and some South Texas-style barbecuing. That was the case over at West Guth Park.
Grill master Paul Sanchez cooked up a feast at the park, making plenty of food. The Sanchez family will be eating good for a few days.
Last, but certainly not least, people clocked to our local beaches to celebrate this Fourth of July. Kiii News Reporter Mike DaSilva went Live from J.P. Luby Surf Park to show us just how many people gathered at the beach.
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