My Independence weekend started in Connecticut, at the beach near where J grew up. The Friday before July 4th, people start staking out their places on the beach from mid-afternoon on, and the fireworks start at sundown. I had work off that day, so we went up early and spent the day swimming and laying out, in preparation for the fireworks that night. His parents and several family friends joined us around dinnertime, and we sat in lounge chairs and enjoyed the lovely evening. It's a really relaxing way to start the long weekend.
Growing up, we would always go to one of the city parks, like Leawood or Shawnee Mission parks, to watch the fireworks. I remember many hot summer nights of playing football or running around with church friends while we waited for the show to start. Then, it was always back to our driveway to do sparklers and fountains and throw pop-pops. (I was never a big fan of the screamers of bottle-rockets.) Always such a fun holiday!