Have a Low-Key St. Patrick’s Day Party

For a low-key St. Patrick’s Day, have a few friends or family members over for a Irish-themed party. “Serve corned beef and cabbage or Irish stew,” suggests WikiHow, along with green beer tinted with a few drops of food coloring. Then, stream a movie to match the theme such as The Quiet Man or Michael Collins (Leprechaun if you’re a horror fan). Or get involved in the nearest St. Patrick’s Day parade by marching with a local civic group, helping design a float or simply cheering the festivities and Irish heritage from the sidelines.

Parades Nationwide Mark Memorial Day

Memorial Day parades have become a grand tradition in towns and cities throughout the country, with local veterans’ organizations and active military often participating. To see one of the biggest, visit the nation’s capital, says Punchbowl; the event regularly attracts more than a quarter-million people and features marching bands, floats and hundreds of veterans who served in conflicts from World War II to the present. New York and Chicago also host huge events every year, as do Littleneck-Douglaston, N.Y., and Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Honoring Veterans on Memorial Day

Memorial Day was established to honor the nation’s fallen soldiers, but has expanded over the years to include all veterans of the armed forces. To honor their service, attend a parade, lay some flowers and a miniature flag at a local gravesite, or invite a living veteran to your cookout; you can also probably find a veteran charity picnic in the area and lend your support. And when flying the flag, keep it at half-staff in remembrance until noon, Homes.com says, then raise it to full-staff at noon to symbolize the ongoing fight for freedom.

Help Vets Enjoy the Parade

Make saluting those who have served part of your Independence Day routine by cheering on the local veterans who are marching in today’s parades and other observances. And when the color guard starts the parade today, adds the Magnolia School of Etiquette, show your respect for the flag by placing your hand over your heart or saluting as it passes. “Every veteran on that parade route is watching,” the blog says. VVA wishes everyone a safe and happy Fourth of July!