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4th of july

The Parade Company / via theparade.org

Tomorrow is the day we celebrate American independence with fireworks, picnics, and, for most of us, a day off from work. We’ll have picnics, flirt dangerously with firecrackers, see spectacular fireworks displays, and maybe, just maybe, think about the meaning of it all.

Ask the average person why this day matters, and they’ll tell you it was when our Founding Fathers signed the Declaration of Independence. Well, while the document is indeed dated July 4, 1776, they had voted to sign it two days before.

ADAM J.W.C. / WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

AAA is predicting nearly one and a half million Michiganders will travel more than 50 miles during the upcoming Fourth of July holiday weekend.

AAA-Michigan spokeswoman Susan Hiltz credits various factors, including an extra-long holiday weekend this year.

“The last time we had travel volume this big was about 15 years ago,” says Hiltz, “So it’s definitely big news for our state and great news for the travel industry.”

But Hiltz cautions more people traveling means Michigan’s highways will be bulging during the Independence Day holiday weekend.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

The Michigan State Police is among several law enforcement agencies on heightened alert for possible terrorism this holiday weekend.

Concerns have been raised by recent terrorist attacks in other parts of the world.