Hi everyone! Happy 4th of July! I hope everyone enjoys their long weekend! Today marks my very first holiday in Alaska. Up here in Seward we do 4th of July a bit differently than back home. In fact, half the festivities happen on the 3rd because they have too much to fit into one day (which is where I took all the pictures below!). And since it’s time for another Friday Five Linkup with Mar on the Run, You Signed Up For What?!, and Eat Pray Run DC, I thought I’d share what makes Seward so unique on the 4th!
1. We host the craziest race ever. People come from all over the USA to tiny little Seward so that they can run the Mt. Marathon Race. Sure, it’s a 5k. But it’s almost completely vertical up 3,022 ft of cliff, mud, and loose shale. People get seriously injured every year, and some people have even died. Yet hundreds dare to sign up for it each year. Which brings me to my next point…
2. The town’s population increases 15 times over during the 4th of July! Imagine a small town with a year round population of about 2,500 that spans only 1 mile long. Now imagine 30,000 people crammed into that space trying to watch the Mt. Marathon Race! That is a legitimate statistic, and there are literally too many people here right now! Campsites are full and people are starting to camp out wherever they can find some grass. I’m not a fan of large crowds so I think I’m going to avoid the downtown area for a few days until things calm down! Thank goodness I already took care of some running things recently so that I’m not pressured to run with this many people crowding the streets!
3. Fireworks are held on July 3rd. It’s too bright here to see fireworks at 9:00 pm like the rest of the US, so the city of Seward elected to hold their fireworks show at midnight on July 3rd. It wasn’t dark at all, but it was really pretty! The coolest part was how much the fireworks echoed around the mountains. It was so loud! I’m sure the City of Seward chose midnight on the 3rd because many people have off the next day and can stay up late to see them, except…
The fireworks under the midnight sun at 12:01 am!
4. People in the tourism industry don’t have off on the 4th, but they probably should because everyone is at the race anyways. Yes, I work today. No, I’m not bitter…although my manager better let me sneak off to watch the race!
5. The temperatures make it finally feel like summer! Temps in Seward are in the mid-70s right now which is totally not normal! Seward usually gets rain so we’re loving this new weather. I am looking forward to spending some time outside in the never-ending sun in a t-shirt and flip flops eating a reindeer dog from a food truck. Best 4th of July plans ever!
And just because “sunset” here is so pretty, I’m including this last little patriotic sunset picture. Freedom!
What is the 4th of July like in your town? What’s your favorite part about the holiday?