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The Fourth of July is upon us and if you're anything like me, you have company coming over after you watch the parade and have yet to put together a party that will light up your backyard like…well, today!  But while you have the propane tank filled, the food ready to grill, and fireworks ready for the evening, there are a few things you can quickly do to make sure you're throwing all that tea overboard worth it more than 245 years ago.


What party would be complete without a cold beverage?  Just like our flag has the three colors of red, white, and blue, make sure you have a minimum of three drink choices.  One of those has to be water, either bottled or maybe having a pitcher on every table to make sure everyone stays hydrated.  Maybe even put some strawberries and blueberries in the water for that patriotic theme.  The other two…well, that's where we can really have a revolution!  If you're serving up classic burgers and hot dogs, you can't go wrong with cold beers.  However, if you want to make them see stars, fix up a few cocktails that may be new to your guests.  Try one of my favorites called the "Red, White and Booze."  You'll need 1 ounce of blue curacao, peach schnapps, clear rum each, and mix with 3-4 ounces of club soda and top with a maraschino cherry.  Always drink responsibly and make sure you keep it out of reach of underage people, of course.  


Pies, cookies, and cupcakes are pretty standard for those sweet, toothed guests.  However, desserts are always the place that people neglect.  Don't go overboard as guests are most likely to bring a dessert to a cookout or party according to studies. You don't need to worry if you have enough.  Just stick with a simple 4th of July themed decoration to create a dessert centerpiece at tables and you have solved both your décor and your dessert in one effort.


To make your party something people will talk about and appreciate, have a simple goody bag for people, especially kids, to take home. Look, they don't have to be anything big, but it is an unexpected surprise that they will all appreciate.  A few boxes of Phantom Fireworks Sparklers with some glow stick apparel kids can wear during the fireworks is not only thoughtful but gets people into the patriotic holiday spirit.  

You've got your party ready to rock but these small things can be done in less than an hour and turn your party from a firecracker to a fireworks extravaganza.  Whatever you do, do it with pride and out of respect as you celebrate a holiday recognizing everything that makes us great as a country.  For on this day, we put our differences aside to celebrate that we get to live in one nation, under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all Americans.  God bless America and have a happy 4th of July!

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