The 4th of July 2020: Social Distance Edition

A Socially Distant 4th of July

While this 4th of July might not be our norm, there are still ways to observe the American holiday while practicing social distancing. It’s important to remember that we’re still in the middle of a pandemic. As a Floridian, I think that fact may bear repeating. Florida is closing beaches for the holiday and the normal Independence Day festivities are rather limited. As someone who doesn’t particularly favor crowded beaches and fireworks anyway, I don’t think my experience is going to change a whole lot. So, if you’re looking for some low-key ways to celebrate the 4th of July 2020, here are some of my easy, affordable, and socially-distant recommendations!

Indulge in Good Food for the 4th

Whether you’re vegetarian or not, the 4th of July is a great excuse for indulging in some tasty summer foods and imbibing on your favorite beer or wine.

As far as food goes, this is a perfect opportunity to cook a luxurious meal, either with new recipes you’ve wanted to try or to revisit old favorites. I, for one, am eyeing the cauliflower tacos and radish salad I included in this recipe roundup.

If you have access to a grill, pick up some Beyond Meat burgers — or regular burgers, depending on your preference — with some awesome cheese and all your favorite toppings. Since we share a grill with our apartment neighbors, I’m not anticipating having easy access to it on the 4th. I might try baking Beyond Meat burgers in the oven, instead.

Pick Up Your Favorite Beer or Wine to Enjoy

I’m a big IPA fan, so I’ll probably be sticking with my go-to Sweet Water IPA for the 4th this year. Alternatively, though, I do love a nice rosé for summer holidays and cook-outs.

If you’re looking for some delicious beer or wine recommendations, I have you covered. The links below are primarily from Total Wine, my go-to store for beer and wine, but most are widely available (except for local craft beers).

(P.S. if you prefer cocktails or other types of fancy drinks, click here for some further inspiration.)

Great Beer Options for 4th of July 2020

Refreshing and Affordable Rosé Options

Refreshing and Affordable Rosé Options - Guy Mousset Cotes du Rhone Rose ($14.99)

Treat Yourself to Your Favorite Ice Cream

The 4th of July kind of just screams “ice cream,” don’t you think? There are a lot of great ice cream-centric dessert options and ideas out there (IE: this colorful no-churn homemade ice cream recipe). But I prefer to keep things simple and just get a pint of my favorite to have on its own.

Based on Ben & Jerry’s recent statements in support of Black Lives Matter, I’m thinking I’ll pick up some of my favorite flavor of theirs: chocolate chip cookie dough!

Or, if it’s safe to do so and your favorite local ice cream shop is open, why not get some from them to-go? Bonus points if they’re a small business!

Watch a Great TV Show or Movie

If you’re into fireworks (not my — or my pets’ — favorite thing), there are some live-streams planned to replace cancelled fireworks shows. You can get more info on those here.

Oprah Magazine put together a great round up of 25 patriotic movies available for streaming for 4th of July 2020, including Hamilton, which is being released on July 3, 2020. Of course, the aptly-named Independence Day is a great option as well.

I’m more of a tv show person, so I’m planning on binging a bit of the West Wing, in hopes that it will help restore a bit of my faith and optimism. Alternatively, Veep is a great option that might be calling my name.

Veep & West Wing, respectively.

Read an Entertaining and Informative Book on American History

Whether you’re a reader by nature, or you’re trying to build it into your routine, we can all benefit from reading a bit more. I’m sure I’m not alone in saying that I have a lengthly list of books about race in America that I am working through, and 4th of July 2020 is a great chance to make a dent in that to-be-read pile.

Great 4th of July Reading Suggestions

If you’re going to order a physical copy of any of these books, I recommend doing so from an independent book store — particularly a Black owned independent book store — as opposed to Amazon. I linked to Amazon here for convenience sake, and incase you wanted to get the e-book versions. Head to my Black Lives Matter resource post here or this Instagram post from @jczpd to find a few such independent, Black-owned stores.

Register to Vote and Request a Mail-In Ballot

What better way to celebrate the 4th of July 2020 by registering to vote!? It’s perhaps the most patriotic way to spend the day — besides by writing your representatives using Resistbot.

I put together a ton of resources on how to check your voter registration to ensure it’s up to date, and how to request an absentee ballot here.

Voting by mail is more important than ever because of the pandemic, and it’s never too early to get all this paperwork squared away. (And by “all this paperwork,” I mean like 3 clicks online because it’s super easy to do.)

How to Register to Vote and Request a Mail-In Ballot

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