Fourth of July Fan
Fourth of July Party
How to have a fun Fourth of July or fourth birthday with kids

You don't need to be born on the Fourth of July to have a star spangled birthday or
celebration! But if your kid
was born on the Fourth of July, he or she has a birthday in
common with someone special in the First Family: First Kid Malia Obama was born on
the Fourth of July in Chicago in 1998.

Here are some ways to celebrate the Fourth of July with kids with a little added spark:

  • Light up the night with glow sticks! Plan ahead and get glow sticks at the dollar
    stores (Michael's has glow stick bracelets in the dollar bins). The kids will love
    wearing them while watching the fireworks. If you want to bundle some fourth
    of July favors into your child's day, give him a pinwheel and a lady liberty torch
    that spins with lights.

  • Get tuned in to the Fourth of July! The kids will enjoy  Fourth of July tunes, such
    as "Born on the Fourth of July" by Bruce Springstein, "American Girl" by Tom
    Petty, and "Keep on Rocking in the Free World" by Neil Young. Mix in a little
    Patriotic Music and Military Songs, too, by downloading to your MP3, left. Music
    always accentuates the Fourth of July fireworks.

  • Plan ahead for your next birthday party. A fourth of July party makes for an
    unusual fourth birthday party theme. So if you're planning a fourth birthday this
    year, you can stock up on Fourth of July party supplies when they go on sale
    and plan a patriotic party for your little shining star later in the year.  If you find
    star themed party supplies, you might also consider using them for another
    party such as an All-Star Sports party, a Hollywood Starlet party or even a
    Wizard theme party, as these themes all have lots stars in them.

  • Free Fourth of July Printables from Paper and Pigtails, right. Please also
    visit their ETSY store for more Fourth of July party supplies. Look for  
    coordinating Fourth of July water bottle labels, snack cups and favor tags.
    A  cherry party adds to the look.

Fourth of July party Food
It doesn't get more American than baseball, hot dogs, and apple pie. But not
everyone likes hot dogs or apple pie, so if your little guy isn't a pie guy, try Wilton's
Star-spangled Brownie, left. Try also these fourth of July food suggestions:

  • Bake a grand old flag cake. Prepare a triple layer vanilla cake by dividing the
    batter into thirds, so that one layer is red and the other blue (and the final
    layer remains uncolored). You might also use red velvet cake as the batter for
    the red layer. Here's the recipe for Wilton's Old Glory Cake, left.

  • Make an easy American Flag Cupcake. Snip red licorice (strings or vines) to lay
    atop a cupcake, then use Wilton cupcake sprinkes. Use star shaped candy
    sprinkles to make the American flag. You could just as easily lay the decoration
    on a plate as a special treat for kids waiting for the barbecue or other dessert.

  • Fourth of July magical drinks. Start with several paper cups for family and friends.
    (Paper cups are important as it hides your Fourth of July surprise.) Put a drop of
    red food coloring in some of the drink cups and blue food coloring in the others.
    Now bury your food coloring drops with ice an get ready to pour a lemon lime
    soda. If you have enough guests, make a rectangle with the cups and pour
    blue food coloring into the upper left corner and alternate rows with the red
    food coloring. Now gather the kids and pour the magic Fourth of July drinks. The
    drinks will magically turn color as you pour each drink. Kids love the magic!

  • S'mores! It wouldn't be a kids celebration without this "All American" treat. You
    won't need a campfire with these fun S'mores ideas:
  • Cold S'mores. Mix in S'mores ingredients into vanilla or chocolate ice cream
    almost the way they do it at ColdStone Creamery. Mix in marshmallows,
    crushed graham crackers and chocolate chunks. Thaw ice cream to
    soften, mix and refreeze before serving. Then top with the hot fudge and
    marshmallow cream!
  • Easy S'more fudge: All you need is a cup of mini marshmallows, a bag of
    chocolate chips, and two 14-ounce cans of Sweetened Condensed milk.
    Back in the kitchen, heat the condensed milk so that it's warm enough to
    melt the chocolate chips. When the mixture has melted, stir in the
    marshmallows and pour on parchment paper. Refrigerate for a couple of
    hours, then cut into squares.
  • Reel them in. Roast marshmallows for S'mores and more (like weenies)
    with the Reel Roaster, left. It rotates for an even roasting and has a safe,
    comfortable grip.

  • More Fourth of July foods to try with kids:

  • Simple Fourth of July fruit salad: slice bananas and toss in blueberries and
    sliced strawberries. The colors are a festive red, white and blue.

  • Make a banana split with Fourth of July sprinkles and a cherry on top.

  • Fluffy Fourth of July Parfait. Whip up a blue raspberry and strawberry
    gelatin dessert with layers of whipped cream. Top it with some real
    raspberries or blueberries if your kids will eat them.

  • Any Fourth of July Dessert will be a treat with kids if you light a sparkler
    for the presentation.

Fourth of July Crafts
Here are some easy crafts to entertain the kids:
  • Craft a mini flag. Have the kids color their own version of the grand old flag onto
    construction paper, then cut and tape the design to a Popsicle stick. Everything
    always looks more grand when displayed on a Popsicle stick.

  • Make an edible flag craft. Buy Jelly Belly jelly beans in the patriotic blend, left.
    Then have kids "glue" a flag onto a plate using white icing gel.  This version is
    edible, unlike the jellybean art you see if you visit the Jelly Belly Factory.

  • Fourth of Juy Fan. We're a real fan of Family Fun's July Fourth Flag idea, right.
    Here's how to make a July Fourth Fan.

How do you plan to spend the Fourth of July with kids? We'd love to hear about your
Fourth of July party ideas. Please
share party ideas with us on Twitter.  
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