July Sparks celebrations for Independence Days in countries of Canada, United States of America and France; Reggae Day in Jamaica and Nelson Mandela Day worldwide. It’s a month of Fireworks, Parades, Music, Festivals and Picnics. Plenty to be happy about in July. Here are highlights of things to do around the world in July:
Things to do in July
INTERNATIONAL REGGAE DAY – July 1 is recognized as International Reggae Day. A 24-hour celebration for reggae culture and its influence on Jamaican music, the day is hosted in Kingston, Jamaica. The objective is to celebrate the best of Jamaican creativity and its worldwide impact using the power of music, media and communication technology to unite nations. The backstory — International Reggae Day was inspired by Winnie Mandela during her official visit to Jamaica in July 1991 with her husband Nelson Mandela after his release from prison. Mrs. Mandela spoke of Reggae’s power through the works of Marley, Tosh, Cliff and others, to inspire South Africa’s people in the face of the oppressive Apartheid regime. A day to recognize the power of this art form seemed appropriate to Andrea Davis of Jamaica Arts Holdings and Reggae Day was launched on July 1, 1994.
– July 1 is the national day of Canada, which celebrates its 150th anniversary this year. The first of July marks the federal statutory holiday commemorating the July 1, 1867 enactment of the British North America Act, 1867 (now know as the Constitution Act, 1867). The Constitution Act 1867 united three colonies into a single country called Canada within the British Empire. The holiday was renamed in 1982 from Dominian Day (French: Le Jour de la Confédération) to Canada Day. Observances take place throughout Canada as well as among Canadians internationally. Check local governments or countries websites for all festivities.
July Brings Independence Day for Canada, USA & France
“…all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” – The Excerpt from the Declaration of Independence
Festivities, fireworks, parades, picnics and speeches are abundant on July 4th across the United States. Two of the largest fireworks display are in the nation’s capital of Washington, DC and in New York City.
America’s National Independence Day Parade & Fireworks Display takes place annually on July 4th at 11:45 am in Washington, D.C., on Constitution Avenue from 7th to 17th Street before hundreds of thousands of spectators. The Parade consists of invited bands, fife and drum corps, floats, military and specialty units, giant balloons, equestrian, drill teams, VIP’s, national dignitaries, and celebrity participants. This patriotic, flag-waving, red white and blue celebration is a major national event which draws the attention of Americans to the real meaning for the holiday. The Parade is co-hosted by the National Park Service and produced by Diversified Events. In addition to the parade, the Smithsonian Folklife Festival on the Mall features different cultures in the Americas and a variety of ethnic groups. That evening is the PBS Concert at the Capitol Building featuring the National Symphony Orchestra and one of the country’s largest fireworks displays.
New York City 41st annual Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks. The nation’s largest fireworks display takes place in New York City. This year’s festivities have a new location — in midtown along the east river — and will showcase a 25-minute display featuring never-before-seen shells and effects. If you are in the NY tri-state area, you can hear the musical score to which the show is choreographed by tuning in to radio station 1010 WINS-AM. Independence Day spectators from coast-to-coast can catch all the action in the sky by tuning to NBC’s two-hour national broadcast of “Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular” beginning at 8 p.m. ET (check local listings).In addition to the pyrotechnic splendor, the 4th of July’s entertainment special will feature performances from the nation’s hottest musical acts. For fireworks and parade celebration in your city, state or town, check your local chamber of commerce or local government’s websites.
WORLD POPULATION DAY – July 11th is a day that focuses attention on the urgency and importance of population issues. In 1989, the Governing Council of the United Nations Development Program recommended that 11 July be observed by the international community as World Population Day. This year’s theme: “Family Planning: Empowering People, Developing Nations. According to the UN Population Fund (UNPF), access to safe, voluntary family planning is a human right. It’s also central to gender equality and women’s empowerment, and is a key factor in reducing poverty. Yet around the world, some 214 million women in developing countries who want to avoid pregnancy aren’t using safe and effective family planning methods, for a variety of reasons. Many of those with an unmet demand for contraceptives live in the poorest countries on earth. This year’s World Population Day coincides with the Family Planning Summit, the second meeting of the (Family Planning 2020 initiative (FP2020), which aims to expand access to voluntary family planning to 120 million additional women by 2020.
“For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.” Nelson Mandela
Where ever you are in the world this July, you can find a reason to celebrate. – Abbe is #SociallySparked Tweet @sosparkednews & @asparks01