Written by Spotloan
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In 2020, approximately 80% of consumers planned to celebrate Independence Day. This number was down from 86% in 2019, which makes sense when you consider how uncertain things were last summer. But now, that number is expected to shoot right back up to pre-pandemic levels as we all make up for lost time!

While we all missed spending time with friends and family, few of us missed spending absurd amounts of money. And we’re here to remind you that there are plenty of exciting ways to celebrate without breaking the bank. Read on for some of our favorite budget July 4th ideas.

Plan a Family Picnic for 4th of July 2021

Whether you opt for a comfortable backyard spread, a blanket on the beach, or a mountain top view, you can’t go wrong with a 4th of July picnic. Challenge yourself to make a meal out of items that you already have in your pantry, fridge, or freezer.

You might be surprised by how easy it is to make something special out of everyday items. If you’re not sure what to do with the ingredients you’ve gathered, try running a quick search for inspiration. SuperCook is a website that helps you waste less and eat great at the same time.

As you browse the different categories (dairy, veggies, fruits, meat, etc.) and select the ingredients that you have on hand, it continuously suggests recipes you can make out of them. You can even narrow down your results by choosing the type of meal you want to make.

Search for Free 4th of July Inspired Activities Nearby

Backyards, beaches, parks, and hiking trails aren’t the only options for fun and free activities. Countless cities across the country host festive 4th of July celebrations. From fireworks to festivals, there’s bound to be something for everyone.

Many different cities host carnivals, performances in outdoor theaters, drive-in movies, parades, street fairs, and other exciting activities throughout the month. And since the 4th of July marks the unofficial start of summer, many of these offerings will kick off that weekend.

Turn Your 4th of July Party Into a Potluck

If you’re someone who looks forward to the warmer weather because it means bigger get-togethers and barbecues, you can still host a 4th of July bash on a budget. Ask guests to bring a dish or dessert to share. Feeding a crowd adds up quickly.

But if you only have to worry about the main dishes, you can slash your costs and still host a festive celebration. And if you’re planning on grilling on a budget, we’ve got suggestions for that, too. The one that will make the biggest impact is to choose hot dogs and burgers over steaks and seafood. Voila, festive and affordable.

Borrow or Bargain Your 4th of July 2021 Supplies

For items like tables, chairs, and party tents, rental fees can get pretty hefty, especially in the peak rental months of the summer. Many party rental companies might even run out or charge extra for this particular weekend. But chances are good that you have a family member, friend, or neighbor that would be willing to lend you their party supplies for the day.

To top it all off, stop by the dollar store for tablecloths, tabletop decorations, disposable serving trays, and other budget-friendly party items. Most dollar stores also sell themed plates, cups, streamers, and other decorative goodies for each major holiday. And don’t forget to grab your s'mores supplies while you’re there!

Choose 4th of July Themed DIY Activities

Any list of budget-friendly July 4th ideas wouldn’t be complete without games or activities. Rather than springing for an expensive new cornhole set that’ll gather dust when you’re done, look for games you already own and items you can repurpose into fun activities.

Grab two buckets or recycling bins and use them as targets for a game of frisbee toss. This game also works well with water balloons or tennis balls. Next, line up some empty soda bottles and grab a basketball for some fun backyard bowling. Look around at what you’ve got, ask others for input, and get creative. Setting it all up is half the fun!