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The National Independence Day Parade

DCA, Washington

Held yearly on the 4th of July, the National Independence Day Parade involves an entire day of unlimited excitement for the whole family.

The National Independence Day Parade starts at 11.45am at the National Archives Building, which is situated on Pennsylvania Avenue. The parade then it heads down to Constitution Avenue in Washington D.C. This spectacular parade features 100 marching units in front of an audience that expands to include thousands of people along the street. After the parade concludes, the popular music begins with performances by many well-known performers. Bringing all of this to a climax is a magnificent fireworks display.

The parade is co-hosted by the National Park Service and is a major national event designed to foster an appreciation for the true meaning of Independence Day. It consists of many bands who are invited to perform based on recommendations by the Governor's office of each state. Spectators enjoy balloons, brightly coloured floats, fife and drum corps, equestrian, military and speciality dignitaries, as well as appearances by celebrities. Famous attendees in the past have included Dolly Parton, Ray Charles, and everyone's beloved fluffy red Muppet, Elmo.

Bringing an end to a memorable day is the National Symphony Orchestra, which leads a crowd of over half a million attendees in many favourite patriotic songs. Finally, cannons are set off and red, white, and blue fireworks explode in an awesome display over the Capitol and the National Monument.