1. Fuel Up Your Boat
The last thing that you want to do during the 4th is have to go fill up your boat. The waiting lines will be brutal at the marina, plus they might hike up the prices due to the holiday. The best thing you can do is fill up a day or two before, this will ensure that you can maximize your time on the water.
2. Find all your Equipment
Make sure that you have tracked down all of your watersports equipment, tubes, boards, ropes, vests, and whatever else that you may have stored away. No need to wait until the 4th to be going through the garage or storage trying to find that one thing. This can be really painful when you are already out on the water and you need an extra piece of equipment and have to go off and find it.
3. Plan for Food
Have you thought about what you are doing for the meals on the 4th! Maybe you are planning for a big BBQ on the shore, making sandwiches for lunch or snacking might be your go to. Regardless of what you are doing you should make sure that you have meals covered, snacks and desserts. Bringing some easy snacks on the boat like sliced watermelon, chips or desserts will help hold you over if you find yourself out on the water. If you need to keep anything cool on the boat make sure you have a cooler designated for your food/snacks.
4. Who's Making the Drinks
Having coolers and ice for drinks is a must, everyone will be outside most of the day and will be sipping on something most of the day. Make sure that you have enough water and everyone stays hydrated during the day. You will want to have drinks for everyone who is going to be there; soda, lemonade, water and of course beer. If you like more elaborate drinks like smoothies or mixed drinks make sure that you have the supplies needed to make the drinks. Having solo cups and a bag of ice only for drinks is a must.
5. Figure out your Freedom Playlist
One of the best ways to celebrate Independence day is through music! You can go ahead and start making a playlist that has all of your favorite songs to celebrate. There are so many classics that need to be played. Or if you don't like the planning yourself you can always just search Spotify for a playlist that is already made for you!
Our top 5 songs that are must haves:
1. Lee Greenwood, "God Bless the USA"
2. Bruce Springsteen, "Born in the U.S.A."
3. Toby Keith, "Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue"
4. Toby Keith, "Made in America"
5. Neil Diamond, "America"
6. Pack and Plan
It is very likely that you will be out on the water for a minimum of a few hours and probably a full day. This means you will want to have everything packed before the start of the day. Must haves are food and beverages like we have already mentioned. Other things that you should bring are towels, sunscreen, sunglasses, hats and a change of clothes.
7. Where's the Firework Show
Figure out where the firework show is happening. Every lake even the small ones have people that will be putting on a show or maybe there is a professional crew putting on a firework display. Regardless try and figure out beforehand where the fireworks will be shot off from and where the best spot to watch them is. You might want to have a plan on when and where you want to go to anchor down and wait for the show to begin. Being in the perfect spot can make a show much better.
8. Pick a Designated Captain
Lots of people like to enjoy an adult beverages especially on holidays. You will want to ensure that your crew has a designated driver who is qualified to drive around the boat. It is important for this person to abstain from consuming alcoholic beverages. At the end of the day safety is the most important thing and we want you and your family to be safe. Additionally, there is a potential for expensive citations and possible jail time if you are operating under the influence.
9. Slow Down
Boating accidents occur at higher rates during holidays due to the higher volume of watercrafts on the water. Additionally there tends to be more distractions with fireworks, music, and friends around. The best thing to do is travel at slower speeds, especially as it starts to get darker out. No need to be in a rush to get to see different fireworks! Happy 4th of July and enjoy the show!
10. Have Fun
The 4th of July is about celebrating the freedom that is found in the United States. Find time to relax, laugh and have a good time with family and friends! It's okay to not have every detail nailed down.