However, some people may not have the freedom they want due to lingering restrictions, shortages of workers and large numbers of unvaccinated individuals.
There are also fears that mixing large numbers of unvaccinated Americans with vaccinated Americans, at a time when the highly contagious delta strain is rapidly spreading, could reverse some of the progress made in fighting the scourge.
Nashville expects as many as 400,000 people will arrive in the city to celebrate its July 4th celebration with country star Brad Paisley. The Boston Pops' Independence Day concert will return to Massachusetts. However, the Tanglewood music centre 100 miles away will host the show, which draws hundreds of thousands to Boston's Charles River esplanade.
Expect to see a lot of people on beaches and at lakefronts. Huntington Beach, California is hosting one of the largest West Coast celebrations. It will be a three-day event that could attract half a million people.
Elizabeth Driscoll will be enjoying the festivities in Cheboygan (Michigan), including a parade down Main Street and a trip at a farmers market, as well as a family party on the lake, just before the Straits of Mackinac fireworks display. The fireworks and parade were cancelled last year.
She said, "You can feel the energy all around town. There's just an influx people on the tourist side and people who live here are out-and-about." "There is good energy."
Airlines have also struggled to find enough crew members to fly their planes. Lifeguards are scarce at beaches and pools. Restaurants and bars in tourist areas have had to cut back on hours due to a shortage of lifeguards.
President Joe Biden welcomed the holiday as an historic moment in America's recovery from the crisis that has claimed the lives of over 600,000. He also praised the months-long restrictions that have been almost eliminated. Biden plans to host over 1,000 people at his White House home -- troops, first responders and essential workers -- for a barbecue and fireworks celebration to celebrate what the administration calls a "summer in freedom".
Biden declared Friday that he would celebrate the holiday. "There are great things happening. ... People are going to baseball games all across America. But, he warned that people who haven't vaccinated will lose their lives.
Due to the vaccinations given to two-thirds (or more) of Americans, there are an average of 12,000 new cases per day and 250 deaths each day. However, this is still below the 70% goal Biden set for July 4. The Delta variant of vaccine hesitancy continues to grow, particularly in the Deep South, West and West.
AAA predicts that over 47 million Americans will travel by plane or car this weekend in the United States. This is a 40% increase on last year and a return to levels of 2019. This includes 3.5 million passengers on airlines.
Travelers waited in long lines at Newark's airport Wednesday to check in. They also encountered delays that tested their patience. Some passengers were happy to board a plane, even though their vacation plans were disrupted by COVID-19 restrictions last year.
Rhetta Williams (54-year-old) was a manager at a pharmaceutical firm and was on her way to Charleston, South Carolina for a reunion with 50 family members that had been postponed last year due to the virus.
She laughed and said, "And we're going to not be practicing any social ditancing."
Zach Carothers, 21, a computer science student at Newark, flew from South Carolina for a weekend at Jersey Shore where people are returning in large numbers.
Carothers stated that it was nice to be back in the field after so much time away. He also said that he looks forward to a vacation with "definitely celebratory beers."
Although masks can be worn indoors, the Transportation Security Administration stresses that they are required at airports as well as on planes. This restriction is not something everyone can accept. There are increasing numbers of passengers refusing to wear masks by airlines.
The largest crowds seen in many communities for months will likely be attracted by fireworks.
Dr. Ashish Jha is the dean of Brown University’s School of Public Health. He stated that "outdoor stuff remains, i think, pretty safe for both unvaccinated and vaccinated people." Although a packed outdoor concert may not be ideal, it is still safe for outdoor activities. It is okay to watch fireworks.
It is safer to move the party indoors, as less than half of states are fully vaccinated.
Lynn Goldman, dean at George Washington University's School of Public Health, stated that "I'm concerned for most of the country." "It's premature for us to declare it over, especially considering what we see elsewhere in the world."