AEE 976: Happy Fourth! 4 Weird American Traditions on the 4th of July

American fourth of July

Have you ever considered how people celebrate the Fourth of July?

When you think of what Americans do, does it seem that the same traditions are always celebrated?

You might be surprised to learn that the Fourth of July can be different in different parts of the country.

We’re going to look at what people do to celebrate the Fourth of July across the United States.

We’re also going to look at how you can respond to some tradition you’ve never heard of before.

 

Traditions May Vary Widely

When you think of the 4th of July, what pops into your head?

  • Fireworks
  • Hot Dogs
  • Summer
  • Freedom

These are the things that we tend to think of as traditional, but it’s not just limited to these few things.

According to businessinsider.com–here is a quote

“Americans consume around 155 million hot dogs on the Fourth of July each year. They also spend $92 million on chips, $167.5 million on watermelon, and $341.4 million on beer.”

Go here to read more

So you can see that the traditions you assume are universal may actually vary widely.

 

There May Be Individual or Universal Traditions

Many people would say that they celebrate with family and a huge group of  friends.

They may go to dinner and celebrate with traditional foods like hot dogs or even have a BBQ.

The tradition may follow up with fireworks to really celebrate the day.

These may be the traditions that you are used to hearing about,but there may be completely different ways to celebrate the Fourth of July.

Understanding the differences is a great way to integrate into the culture.

 

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Unusual Traditions Can Be Interesting

There are unique ways of celebrating every holiday.

You might not realize it, but there are some rather unconventional ways of celebrating the Fourth of July as well.

There are some unique ways that people celebrate this holiday around the country.

 This is from a blog called The Daily Californian 

  • In Ocean Beach, California, apparently they have a marshmallow fight to celebrate! According to this article, there has been violence in past years (now it’s peaceful)
  • In Bar Harbor, Maine-they race lobsters
  • In Kentucky, people donate electronics and others come with guns to shoot at the electronics

There is no “one size fits all” where traditions are concerned.

Understand the different ways of celebrating, respect the unique ideas, and fully integrate yourself into the culture in this way.

 

Be Sure To Respond To Different Traditions Appropriately

There are some very different traditions or ways of celebrating out there.

What can you say if someone is describing a custom you didn’t know about?

Here are 3 phrases to respond to a tradition you have never heard of. 

  1. I’ve never heard of that before!
  2. That’s a new one!
  3. Really? That sounds….fun/unique/interesting

You can insert any of these into conversation when you discover that people celebrate things in new and different ways.

 

Takeaway

The US is so big and while there are always your typical traditions for holidays, chances are there are different ways of celebrating around the country.

The traditions may vary by area within the United States too.

 If someone tells you about their tradition, you want to be respectful and try to connect with them.

You may learn something great by understanding how different people celebrate the same holiday.

Use one of the phrases we taught and be sure to ask follow up questions and share a bit from your own culture!

 

If you have any questions, please leave them below in the comments section.

We’ll get back with you as soon as we can. 

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