Five things to know about the 4th of July


The long holiday weekend may be halfway through, but there’s still plenty of fun to be had. Here are five things to know about the holidays.

(READ MORE: 36 places in the Chattanooga area to watch fireworks, celebrate the 4th of July)

1. What do we eat? According Google Analytics compiled by, cold sides and salads accounted for the most searches in the weeks leading up to July 4, 2021 (this year’s numbers are not yet available). Potato salad, macaroni salad, coleslaw and deviled eggs conducted combined research in 22 states. Tops in Tennessee were deviled eggs (the same in four other states). Georgians were looking for baked beans (along with seven other states), and Alabama was most interested in roasted corn (along with three other states and the District of Columbia). Other foods on the list were smoked brisket, smoked ribs, fried chicken, roast potatoes, Buffalo chicken dip, and red, white, and blue fruit pizza.

2. What are we spending? According personal finance website WalletHub, Americans plan to spend $7.7 billion on 4th of July food. Part of that amount will go towards the 150 million hot dogs Americans eat each Independence Day. The budget also calls for spending $1.4 billion on beer and wine for the holidays.

3. How do we recreate? Local lakes and rivers could be more crowded this year. The Water Sports Foundation reports that millions of boaters and paddlers (kayaks, SUPs) are expected to get in the water this July 4 weekend, including more than 830,000 first-time boat buyers who purchased watercraft during the pandemic of COVID-19.

Additionally, the Boat Owners Association of America (BoatUS) says trends indicate that many boaters with gasoline engines are waiting for vacations to get in the water due to high fuel prices. “We anticipate a tsunami of boaters like never before,” said John Condon, vice president of towing services for BoatUS, which operates the nation’s largest on-water towing fleet, TowBoatUS. “While trends have shown a steep drop in our calls for service since Memorial Day, our members are telling us they are waiting for the July 4 holiday weekend to get their boats out.”

(READ MORE: Chattanooga-area fireworks vendors prepare for busy Independence Day)

Staff Photo by Matt Hamilton / The 2021 finale of the 4th of July fireworks show casts a blinding light over a ball field at Heritage Point Park in Dalton, Ga. Dalton is one of a dozen communities in the area celebrating holidays monday.

4. How do we celebrate? With fireworks – lots and lots of fireworks. The American Pyrotechnics Association estimates that shoppers will spend $2.3 billion on 4th of July fireworks this year. Nationally, prices are up 35%, according to the industry group, which reminds backyard revelers to choose a safe location that’s free of debris and has a flat, level surface. And spectators should be kept at a safe distance.

(READ MORE: How to use fireworks safely this 4th of July)

5. What do you think of vacations? This quote from comedian Erma Bombeck pretty much sums it up:

“You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every 4th of July, not with a parade of weapons, tanks and soldiers marching past the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where the kids throw frisbees, the potato the salad gets dodgy and the flies die of happiness. You may think you’ve eaten too much, but that’s patriotism.

Contact Lisa Denton at [email protected] or 423-757-6281.

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