Anchorage July 4th Celebration – a Community-wide Celebration
For many years, Anchorage residents were without a community-wide celebration on July 4th because of a widespread belief most people left town on the holiday. At the same time, residents wanted to salute their military personnel and celebrate the city’s diversity. Research pointed to a strong desire among residents to contribute to a better community.
Private funders helped establish a daylong celebration in Anchorage organized in cooperation with the Municipality. The day began with a pancake breakfast where proceeds benefit Salvation Army homeless programs. A community and military parade features our city’s community spirit and is followed by an afternoon of music and games at a picnic on the downtown Park Strip. All events are within the downtown area so once parked, it is relatively easy to walk around. The message in the first couple of years was to “stay in town” but soon was replaced as the tradition established very quickly by the event’s reputation.
Thousands of people stayed in town for the first celebration in 2002 with growth continuing each year since. Many residents, even after two years, stated they’ve always stayed in town. Funders were eager to renew their support as the event grew in reputation and stature as a fun celebration of Anchorage’s unique sense of community.