What could be better than summer? How about two summer holidays that bring family and friends together?

Make Dad's Day Special

Starting around 1910, some towns and cities across America began celebrating "father's day." By 1966 the third Sunday of June was officially proclaimed a national holiday.

Here are some fun activities Dad will love on his big day:

Play "Goofy Golf"

In this game of miniature golf, the kids must be creative with the clubs, balls and holes. For example, at the first hole, have the golfers use broomsticks to hit oranges onto plates. At the second hole, let the kids use baseball bats to hit walnuts into tipped-over shoes.

Design commemorative T-shirts

Have kids and Dads use felt-tip pens, paints and decals to make their own keepsake T-shirts based on a favorite shared activity, such as fishing or bowling. Be sure to have them include the date, scores, number of fish caught, or anything else that's significant to the big day. If Dad doesn't fish or bowl, the T-shirts could commemorate Father's Day or any other event they remember fondly together.

With the kids, make something yummy

Is Dad an early riser? Make Golden Sunrise French Toast [link to ttp://www.verybestbaking.com/recipes/142102/Golden-Sunrise-French-Toast/detail.aspx] and serve him breakfast in bed. Does he have a sweet tooth? Rocky Road Squares are just the thing. Is he a meat-and-potatoes kind of guy? Then he’ll love Potato Bacon Casserole 

Show your pride on the Fourth of July

Independence Day commemorates the signing of the Declaration of Independence by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. A Fourth of July celebration is a summertime tradition all across America.

Here are some fun ways to commemorate the big day:

Make Fourth of July "cracker" invitations

These are an amusing take-off on both English Christmas "crackers" and Independence Day firecrackers. Write your party details on small cards. Stuff the cards inside paper tubes decorated with red and white stripes, and wrap the tubes with crepe paper. Tie off the ends with ribbon, and fringe the "extra" crepe with scissors. Mail the whole thing in a cardboard tube, or hand-deliver. Sprinkle star confetti inside. Stick stars on the envelope.

Decorate patriotically

Stick small American flags everywhere -- even in hunks of cheese, cakes and pies. Swag red, white and blue crepe paper streamers around your room or your patio. String red, white and blue lights on bushes and trees in the backyard. Cover tables with patriotic paper tablecloths, or buy inexpensive fabric in red, white, and blue and make your own tablecloths. Play John Philip Sousa marching tapes for background music.

Declare that fun is our right

Give kids copies of the Declaration of Independence and let them add their own signatures. Show them how to use feather quills as pens. Or, play old-fashioned games such as three-legged races and wheelbarrow races. Even better, play tug-of-war with one side as colonists and one side as British "red-coats" and see who comes out on top.

For the 4th of July, make your food red, white and blue -- and delicious!

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