Independence Staycation

by | Jul 2, 2012 11:00 AM ET

Fireworks over the Chicago skyline (Thinkstock).

It's always a bummer when July 4th falls midweek because you usually can't get to go out of town.  So if you're going to be home for the holiday, here's a recap of the ideas we mentioned on our podcast for celebrating locally. Most of these would work for any other staycation too.

Create Your Own Summer Olympics

This works great at a family reunion.  Start off having the kids make a bunch of medals and country flags; these could be of actual countries or places they've invented.  Then have an Olympic torch relay around the neighborhood.

As for the actual sports, go with events like a football throw, a water balloon toss, sack races--the crazier the better. Afterwards, have your medal ceremonies.

Girls Hometown Getaway

If you've got a stack of hotel points you haven't been able to use, why not use splurge on a room at the coolest hotel in your town?

Get a couple of your girlfriends together and enjoy the beautiful life.  Take advantage of the hotel's pool, spa, wine bar or restaurant.  Order room service, pedicures and enjoy the chance to catch up with each other.

Backyard Campout

This one's for the dads who like to take their kids camping. Why not pitch your tent in the remote wilderness of your own backyard?  The activities would just the same as any state campground -- build a campfire (or improvise with your grill), roast hot dogs, and make s'mores.  Anything you've forgotten to pack can be retrieved from the house in a matter of minutes!

At night, have a firefly catching contest, or see who can tell the scariest ghost story. The best part is if the kids get frightened or everyone gets too hot outside, just head right back indoors.

Best Fireworks on Earth

If you live in a city with a great fireworks display that you've never seen in person because of the crowds, this make like a tourist and go!  You'll be glad you did.  It's way better than watching it on TV.

What are your plans for the holiday?

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