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Here are 4 fun ways to celebrate July 4th this year

Virtual parades, paddleboards, more

The annual Ann Arbor Fourth of July Parade on Liberty St. on July 4, 2019. (Meredith Bruckner)

ANN ARBOR, Mich. – With many parades and events canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, celebrating the fourth of July feels a bit different this year.

From meal deals at Ann Arbor restaurants to virtual parades, we’ve found four ways to celebrate from home.

Check these out:

Virtual Jaycees Parade

From 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, the Ann Arbor Jaycees will hold a virtual parade in lieu of its annual in-person parade through downtown Ann Arbor.

Participants can watch the parade through Facebook and look for photos and videos of colorful and patriotic bikes decorated by community members.

Need more parade action? Ypsilanti will also host a virtual parade and flag ceremony from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Facebook.

Related: Ann Arbor Jaycees cancels Fourth of July Parade and Summer Carnival over safety concerns

Firecracker 5K

In-person races may be canceled but you can still run the Firecracker 5K on your own. Any time between July 4-31, runners can pick a day and complete a 5K race on their own. Racers can receive swag and compete for awards to be given out via Zoom at 7 p.m. on Aug. 3.

Participants can follow a race pattern by downloading RaceJoy and tracking their times.

Find race information here.

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Meals Deals

Head over to the Farmers Market from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. to pick up some grub for lunch or grab a meal to-go from a nearby eatery.

Skip the hassle of standing in front of a hot grill and let a restaurant do the work for you. Many Ann Arbor restaurants are open all weekend, or have modified hours, and are serving takeout options with delivery or curbside service.

Some restaurants are even offering meal kits for the weekend, like Miss Kim’s Fourth of July Bun Kit.

Get in the water

With July 4th falling on a Saturday, it’s a perfect excuse to get outside and into the water. Schedule a time to rent a kayak or canoe from the Argo Park and Gallup Park liveries. Boats can be rented from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and must be returned by 8 p.m. Reservations are required for all canoe, kayak, stand-up paddleboard and paddleboat rentals.

Learn how to rent a boat or paddleboard here.

Not a fan of the water? Visit one of Ann Arbor’s 163 parks or the Ann Arbor Skatepark.

About the Author:

Sarah has worked for WDIV since June 2018. She covers community events, good eats and small businesses in Ann Arbor and has a Master's degree in Applied Linguistics from Grand Valley State University.