Cooking Outdoor

4th of July Activities: Grilling, Chilling, S’mores and More

4th of July Activities
Barbecue on 4th of July

4th of July activities are what make the summer amazing. Whether your family always brings chairs and blankets out to watch the evening’s fireworks show or you’re not a fan of bright explosions and loud noises, the weekend of the fourth is designed for more than just an hours-long firework show. Use this three-day weekend to make the most of time with friends, family, pets and yourself. Sunny weather outdoors means it’s time to pull out the grill and craft great recipes for everyone. After that, it’s time for ultra-fun 4th of July activities. In search of inspiration? Check out our ideas below!

Grill From Anywhere

Lots of folks hit the road for the 4th, while others have fun on the home front. Wherever you go, take smoky flavor with you with portable grills like the Weber Traveler or the Napoleon Phantom. These barbecues are designed to go pretty much anywhere, folding down into carts and popping up into their own standing grilling stations. Stash ingredients on attached shelves as you light these burners and start the fires beneath your brats, burgers and veggies. 

Having fun with 4th of July activities from home? You’ve got much more grilling space to use to your heart’s content on a larger barbecue at home. Instead of just burgers and dogs, you’ll be able to get creative. Make spatchcocked chickens, skirt steak sandwiches, wings, full meals and even desserts all on the same cooker. Get creative and go for foods that feature reds, whites and blues, like strawberry and blueberry tarts topped with marshmallow fluff. Give these treats a gentle toasting to get the sweets warmed, but not scorched. Pass them around on a platter so that everyone can enjoy an early dose of a fruity take on s’mores. If you’re searching for grilling recipes, check out our collection fromThe Bolt

Fun For The Kids

Water fighting

It’s the middle of summer and the perfect time for kids to have fun outdoors. Create low-effort 4th of July activities any kid or teen can have fun with in the backyard with games like water gun fights and scavenger hunts. Make sure everyone’s got a swimsuit if you’re going the water gun route: you can even pull out the plastic pool, sprinkler and hose to keep everyone entertained (including the dog).

If your games get a little rained out from poor weather, don’t worry, there are tons of exciting things to do inside, whether you’re playing games on the Nintendo Switch or classics like bingo and board games. Even adults can get involved in a classic round of bingo (with prizes, of course). Or break out a deck of cards and have the grandparents teach the kids classic card games. We’ll see who wins in the battle of generations.    

Have A Blast After Dark

Smores after dark

When the sun is finally low, it’s time to pull out the gear for s’mores and start up the firepit. Whether you have a fire table that’s fueled by natural gas, a propane version or a wood-fueled firepit, there’s nothing better than gathering ’round the flames. Make sure everyone’s got a marshmallow stick, too. Then it’s time to assemble the s’mores station; some prefer switching out classic chocolate for peanut butter cups and other candies, while others keep it to the original squares of chocolate. If you’re having fun on an evening free from fireworks, there are plenty of ways to have fun outdoors after dark. Tired eyes can still see the stars: have fun picking out constellations and telling stories about mythology as everyone enjoys licking chocolate from their fingertips. The best way to finish out a day of 4th of July activities is by spending time under the sky, whether you’re watching fireflies above, stars overhead or fireworks bursting into bright colors.   

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