July 4th is a great American tradition. Small towns and big cities throw huge day-long celebrations with thousands of people to celebrate our Independence. In my home state of NJ, there are hundreds of parties planned (weather permitting) but many will be postponed to Saturday because of rain, so keep checking your town’s website. Here is a complete list with an interactive map of NJ.
This is one of those long hot days and its better to be safe than sorry, and it’s easy for parents to lose their kids in a big crowd. Here are some safety tips!
- Charge your cell phone to 100% before you leave home and close out apps that you don’t need open on your phone to save power. If you have a mophie juice pack or Duracell powermat, bring that along; you may not be able to recharge all day.
- Make sure the entire family is covered with sun screen and take a little extra bottle along incase you need more later.
- Bring a pair of sunglasses or baseball cap to keep sun out of your eyes.
- Take a photo of your child and your pet on your phone, before you set out. If they go missing, you won’t have to describe what they look like or what they are wearing, you will know and can email the picture right away. Dogs like to get into the holiday spirit too!
- Discuss a plan of where to meet if you or your child gets lost. Pick one or two spots in the park for both of you to go if you can’t find each other.
- Put your cell phone number in the pocket of your child’s clothing or tape/pin it into the outfit they are wearing and see if you can get them to memorize it. Many four or five-year olds will be able to remember 9 numbers if you make it into a game. If they have no pockets, put your number inside their shoe or write it with a sharpie on their arm!
- Point out the policemen and the people who are in charge of the event. Make sure they know they can go to one of these people and ask for help if they can’t find you.
- Explain to your kids that they can’t wonder off or they could get lost. I’m not a big fan of putting a leash on children but if you have more than one and they like to run, this might be the day to make an exception.
- Don’t let your kids go to public bathrooms alone. Many of them have back doors or windows and your child could easily disappear while you are waiting outside.
- Leave all your credit cards and checkbook at home. Just take your ID, one credit card and some cash that you can safely tuck away. It is easy to get ripped off in a big crowd and money falls out of shallow pockets.
- Drink a lot of water and stay hydrated.
Towne’s Tips are courtesy of Towne Realty Group in Short Hills, NJ.
Have a fun, safe and happy holiday and make sure to wear your red, white & blue!