Freedom, fireworks, barbeques, parades, summer fun and all things red, white and blue – the Fourth of July is one of the best days of the year. There is something about our entire nation coming together to celebrate our independence and being American that makes me beam with pride to be a citizen of this country. We are the greatest nation in the world, and the way we celebrate Independence Day is a perfect display of our patriotism and celebration of another year of American prosperity.

Celebrations looked a little bit different last year with many parades and parties being cancelled due to the pandemic, but Missouri Independence Day celebrations are coming back in full force this year. St. Charles is once again holding its Riverfest where you can find local bands, arts and crafts for the kids, a patriotic parade and great fireworks display. For anyone looking to get a little exercise in before indulging in the weekend barbeque, O’Fallon is holding the 37th Annual Firecracker Run on Sunday morning. Wentzville will be holding their Liberty Fest with a parade, swimming, skating at the ice arena and of course – fireworks. In Jefferson City, you can attend the Salute to America with a carnival, parade, fireworks, live music. And since it is our state capital, the Salute to America will also be a kickoff celebration for Missouri’s Bicentennial which is coming up in August and is a major milestone I look forward to commemorating.

Independence Day is a holiday that centers around freedom, and we would be remiss not to mention the reason we have been afforded this freedom: the men and women in uniform who protect our great nation. While many of us will be able to resume our usual Fourth of July festivities with our family and friends, there are troops who are observing the day overseas and families who will have to celebrate without them again. Please join me in keeping all of Missouri’s military and their families in your prayers this Independence Day and when you get the chance, thank a veteran for their service. Freedom doesn’t come free, and they know it better than anyone.

My love for this country is part of the reason I ran for Congress. It is up to us to make this nation an even better place for our children and generations to come so they will continue to share in the pride and patriotism we feel for America. This year, we’re seeing the resilience and hardworking American spirit we’re known for all over the world as we bounce back, and I am so proud of how far we’ve come. I know we’ll continue to get stronger and I am as proud as ever to be an American. On behalf of my family, I wish you and yours a happy and safe Fourth of July weekend!

CONTACT US: As always, for those of you with Internet access, I encourage you to visit my official website. For those without access to the Internet, I encourage you to call my offices in Jefferson City (573-635-7232) Washington, Mo. (636-239-2276), or Wentzville (636-327-7055) with your questions and concerns. If you want even greater access to what I am working on, please visit my YouTube siteFacebook page, and keep up-to-date with Twitter and Instagram.