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Fourth of July

Stars and stripes. Apple pie. Baseball. Hotdogs. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. All things American.

The Fourth of July is a time for families and friends to get together, shoot off some fireworks, have a backyard barbecue and just simply be together.

Maybe it's the nice Minnesota weather. Maybe it's tradition. Maybe it's just an excuse to get out and have some fun.

As most know, the Fourth of July celebration came about after the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, declaring the 13 American colonies free of British control.

Congress actually voted on July 2 to declare independence from Great Britain, and it was Thomas Jefferson who then drafted the Declaration of Independence, and Congress approved it on the 4th.

Not only did the Declaration define the states' independence, it also outlined powers of the states, including the right to revolution. Though the document was ignored for years to come, one line in particular has become a well-known one.

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."

And while people are more than happy to celebrate their independence, many concentrate on the fireworks, barbecues and family time. Detroit Lakes, known for years as a July 4 hot spot, has plenty of activities going on over the three-day weekend.

Some of the activities going on the Fourth of July weekend include

• Restaurants have music -- (Lakeside, Holiday Inn, Zorbaz)

• Night Storm will be at the Pavilion to host a dance

• Lake associations boat parades

• Fireworks displays in Frazee and area towns

• Shakespeare in the Park cast performs "All's Well that Ends Well" in the City Park Bandshell

• Shady Hollow Flea Market

• High Plains Festival

• Discovery Dives

• Caribbean Deck Party at The Bridge Marina

• Nature Movies at Tamarac Wildlife Refuge Theater

• Teen Freedom Fest, concerts for youth

So regardless of age or taste, there should be plenty of activities going on in and around Detroit Lakes this Fourth of July season. Enjoy! -- Pippi Mayfield