5 Ways To…Celebrate July 4th in Bergen County
Ring in America’s birthday—quarantine style—with these Bergen-centric ideas.
The COVID-19 pandemic and the quarantine have undoubtedly put a damper on things like graduation ceremonies, wedding receptions and other large social gatherings, but the good news is holidays can still be celebrated safely. We still found a way to make Memorial Day, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day 2020 not too shabby, right?! And the same can be said for July 4th. It’s a three-day weekend when we traditionally show off our patriotic pride, eat good food and spend time outside with family and friends. All of that is still permitted despite the pandemic!
So even though you might not be having that block-wide BBQ you’d have on Independence Days of yore, you can still make July 4, 2020, a memorable time for all. Here are five few ways to enjoy the long summer weekend in Bergen County while still keeping safe (and socially distant):
1. Join in on a parade.
Even though the fireworks shows in Hackensack, Maywood, Paramus, Ridgewood, Saddle Brook and other towns have all been cancelled, it’s not all a loss. Ridgefield Park is moving forward with its 126th annual Independence Day parade, albeit with a few modifications. This year’s will be a vehicle-only parade without bands or marchers, and spectators must wear masks and keep their distance. The first of two parades begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday at Poplar Street and Euclid Avenue: Check out the Ridgefield Park website for the rest of the day’s packed schedule.
2. Watch the fireworks from NYC.
Our local fireworks shows are cancelled but Macy’s 4th of July fireworks show is a go—with some changes, of course. Each night this week there have been mini fireworks displays of five minutes each in one of the five boroughs of New York City. The grand finale show will culminate in Manhattan on Saturday, July 4 and be televised on NBC from 8–10 p.m. The live TV special will also feature musical performances and touching tributes to our frontline heroes.
3. Live-stream a patriotic performance.
Broadway and local New Jersey theaters have gone dark indefinitely, but as they say in the business, the show must go on! That’s why Bergen County Players in Oradell will be live streaming BROADWAY SINGS AMERICA: The Social Conscience of Musical Theater on Friday, July 3 at 7 p.m. The 70-minute performance features five of the company’s vocalists who will sing songs from a handful of Broadway’s biggest musicals like Miss Saigon and Les Misérables that touch on important topics like history, war and patriotism. The performance can be streamed online at bcplayers.org starting tomorrow night and throughout the summer for free.
4. Enjoy a meal out.
As of last week, there are dozens of restaurants in Bergen County open for outdoor dining. So rather than cooking at home like you’ve done almost every night for the last three months, treat the family to a festive July 4th meal prepared by someone else. For example, Fire & Oak in Montvale set up picnic benches outside to give diners that BBQ ambience, while other restaurants are offering holiday specials. The Cheesecake Factory in Hackensack, for instance, is giving takeout customers seven items of food and drink for $20—including a heavenly slice of Oreo Dream Extreme Cheesecake—until July 5.
5. Splurge on a patriotic dessert.
Sorry, but July 4th is no time for a diet, especially not after you see the special red, white and blue treats some local bakeries are cooking up. Kurly Kurtosh in Hackensack has limited edition July 4th chimney cakes decorated with edible red, white and blue glitter. Zai’s Dessertery in Bergenfield is celebrating America with a red, white and blue macaron giveaway. Mimi’s Cookies in Waldwick has DIY July 4th cookie decorating kits for sale—and, well, you get the point. Isn’t America’s birthday worth the calories?