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July 4 parade returns to downtown St. Louis this summer

This year's theme is "Let Freedom Ring."

ST. LOUIS — The streets of downtown St. Louis will once again turn red, white and blue as a summer tradition returns this July 4 holiday weekend.

Editor's note: The above video is from 5 On Your Side's coverage of July 4, 2021 celebrations.

America's Birthday Parade will be held on July 2 at 10 a.m. It will leave from Fourth and Market streets at Kiener Plaza and march west to 20th Street.

Organizers tout the event, which is in its 139th year, as one of the longest-running parades in the nation. This year's theme is "Let Freedom Ring."

“America’s Birthday Parade has been a summer tradition in St. Louis since 1878, and we are thrilled to wow parade goers with an elaborate spectacle of floats, choreographed dances and live performances in a parade down Market Street in the shadow of the iconic Gateway Arch,” said Ed Mayuga, spokesperson for America’s Birthday Parade, in a Friday news release announcing details on the parade. “Whether you attend the parade each year or you’ve never been, we invite you to join us in saluting our city, our people, our community and our country.”

Mascot Archibald Eagle will also be returning after making his "Inaugural Flight" last year. "When you spot him around town, donned in his classic red, white and blue apparel, be sure to say hello and give him a high five!" the event's website said.

Credit: UPI
A flag detail preforms during America's Birthday Party Parade in downtown St. Louis on Saturday, July 3, 2021. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI

The parade was canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and returned last year. Parade organizers said they are once again working with the City of St. Louis to ensure safety at the parade. Health and safety protocols will be released closer to the parade date, the release said.

“We are committed to hosting a parade that is safe for everyone while not limiting the fun of the parade-day experience,” Mayuga said.

After the parade on Saturday, Fair Saint Louis will kick off at noon at Kiener Plaza and Ballpark Village. It will go out with a bang with its fireworks show on July 4.

More information on America's Birthday Parade can be found on the parade's website.

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