'Freedom without masks': Picnics and parades return to Bay Area for Fourth of July

ALAMEDA, Calif. (KGO) -- The Bay Area celebrated Independence Day in true American style -- Parades and picnics were back on this year after being canceled by coronavirus in 2020.

Marching bands were making a comeback. So were the bagpipers.

The annual Orinda July Fourth Parade was back. Locals say it's a star spangled tradition here.

Hundreds of people came out to watch.

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"It feels great for the community to come together, feels like the first time," said Andrea Stirle.

"I was super excited for the parade. It's been a long time, especially with COVID happening," said Sam Roice from Moraga.

COVID-19 canceled last year's parade, but it looks like the patriotic spirit never left.

"July Fourth means getting out without a mask and being surrounded by family and friends," said Liz Branford.

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In Alameda, the holiday was all about freedom and patriotism on board the USS Hornet.

A squadron of civilian pilots, made a formation flyover honoring fallen men and women who served in the U.S. armed forces.

The historic aircraft carrier played host for a July 4th party. The Hypolite family are visiting from Dallas.

"So for our kids, having this experience is everything to us, learning the history of the country, and for people who fought for our freedom for us to be here," said Fabian Hypolite.

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Retired Navy officer Lewis Ross told us what July Fourth means to him.

"The freedom of our nation after covid, coming out of covid. It's a joy to see so many people coming to visit," said Ross.

In Sausalito the city's annual July Fourth picnic was back.

"No parade or fireworks but it's a great day for a picnic," said Julie Myers from the City of Sausalito.

Friends and neighbors are back together celebrating America's birthday.

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