Tips for Independence Day
Department of the Interior/Lawler
Beautiful fireworks, good food, and time with loved ones are hallmarks of Independence Day. So are heat and humidity, long walks, and crowds of distracted celebrants. Rangers have prepared a list of tips to help you beat these challenges and have a fun, safe Independence Day.
Avoid sunburn. Wear sunscreen and reapply it often throughout the day. Cover up with a hat, sunglasses, and light clothing. You may use a large umbrella or tent until sunset as long as you do not put any stakes in the ground.
Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water and avoid drinks with caffeine or alcohol, which make you lose more fluids.
Know how to recognize heat emergencies. Symptoms may include headache, nausea, muscle spasms and fatigue. Learn more about heat illness.
Be prepared for severe weather. No place outside is safe during a thunderstorm, so be ready to find shelter in a building or metal-topped vehicle. Learn more about lightening safety.
Wear comfortable shoes. Road closures and crowds mean that you may walk much farther than you expect. Sturdy shoes will protect your feet when walking over uneven ground in the dark.
Stay on designated trails and use marked crosswalks. Do not climb over or remove fencing. Drivers are often distracted by road closures, crowds, and unfamiliar surroundings.
Follow the rules of the Mount Vernon Trail. Many pedestrians and bicyclists on the trail will be unfamiliar with its rules. Set a good example for them.
Stay on dry land. No swimming or wading is allowed in the Potomac River.
Consider leaving your pet at home. When deciding whether or not to bring your pet, think about whether it will be comfortable surrounded by heat and noisy fireworks, crowds of strangers, and many other animals. You may bring your pet as long as it is on a six-foot (or shorter) leash and you dispose of its waste in a trash can.
Did You Know?
Box turtles are one of the 21 species of reptiles that call the George Washington Memorial Parkway home. You can help protect these turtles by observing them from afar and not removing them from the wild. More...