Spectators snagged their spots early, like Eloise Gibby of Berwyn who comes every year.
"It's great to see the reenactors - all the participants. We look for the same groups every year," Gibby said.
Groups and floats from seven different states, marching in front of Independence Hall, where our nation was born 242 years ago.
There's just something special about being here to celebrate.
John Robinson of Drexel Hill points out, "It's the birthplace of the United States."
Suzanne Lesher of Jenkintown adds, "The Declaration was written a block away."
The Celebration of Freedom Ceremony in front of Independence Hall kicked off the day's festivities. There the Mayor presented the Philadelphia Magis award to Giana Graves, a 22-year-old transgender youth activist from South Philadelphia.
And for many, this is all just the start of a marathon day that will end with fireworks over the Art Museum. They wouldn't want to spend it anywhere else.
Arlene Woods of West Philadelphia said, "It's America. Land of the free. Home of the brave. And because I was born here and raised here and I love it here."
Chris Frank of Jenkintown exclaimed, "What's the most American thing you can do? Come to Philadelphia where the Declaration was signed today."
More July 4th Celebration around the region:
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