SAN JOSE, Calif. - America celebrates Independence Day and in dozens of communities across the Bay Area, that means parades to start the day.
Each had a different theme or flavor, but they had a common purpose -- to remember the many freedoms we enjoy.
LIST: Bay Area 4th of July fireworks and festivities
It's a great way to kick off the fourth. Spectators gathered for the 10th Annual Rose White & Blue Parade in San Jose. The city has had celebrations and parades with a rose theme, off and on, since 1896.
When asked how many years she's been to the parade, Nickie Martin responded, "I think maybe eight." Nancy Cheso said, "At least seven or eight."
That means they both have been enjoying the parade since before some of the kids there were even born, including Jack, who's mesmerized by something he saw go by.
PHOTOS: Bay Area 4th of July celebrations 2017
Lillian and Tony Lapres have called San Jose home for a half-century. The highlight for them? "Oh, just seeing such a combination of people, everybody enjoying each other's differences," Lillian said.
Diversity was on parade and elected officials were, too.
The parade was conceived to draw people to area shops and restaurants, but enterprising twins Madison and Logan Busch set up a lemonade stand on Dana Avenue to raise money for Humane Society Silicon Valley.
They raised $80 in just 90 minutes.
Want to know what the weather will be like here for the Fourth of July? Click here for the latest AccuWeather forecast.
The weather was perfect, sunny and just enough breeze to keep cool. And lots of entertainment provided by the spectators, who reacted to patriotic songs -- a perfect way to kick off a busy fourth.
"We're going home and barbecuing," parade spectator Kathy Moore said.
The Fourth of July program at Shoreline Amphitheatre kicks off at 8 p.m. Tuesday. The San Francisco Symphony will perform under conductor Edwin Outwater, featuring show tunes and favorites from movies.
The 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular follows. ABC7 is a sponsor of the special event -- it should be quite the evening!
Click here for full Fourth of July coverage!