Countdown to 250th anniversary begins in the US, an effort planners hope can unify a divided country

It is three years till the United States celebrates its 250th anniversary, however festivities are already beginning.

The anniversary push will formally launch July 4 with an occasion throughout a Main League Baseball sport between the Milwaukee Brewers and the Chicago Cubs at American Household Discipline in Milwaukee. The group spearheading the celebration, often called America250, will begin recruiting folks to share their tales of what the country means to them.

The country is headed towards the anniversary date because it stays riven politically, its residents divided over how to view the Jan. 6, 2021, assault on the U.S. Capitol and whether or not President Joe Biden was legitimately elected. Even choices on the place to store or what beer to drink have been caught up in political combating.

Earlier than the U.S. reaches its semiquincentennial — attempt saying that out loud — it is going to have to survive the 2024 presidential election, which is shaping up to be as divisive as its prior two contests.

Occasions additionally had been fraught in the run-up to the country’s 1976 bicentennial celebration, which got here two years after Richard Nixon resigned his presidency over the Watergate scandal and convulsions over the finish of the Vietnam Warfare. It adopted a decade that noticed the assassinations of President John F. Kennedy, Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr.

However Rosie Rios, the former U.S. treasurer who heads America250, has fond reminiscences of that celebration as an 11-year-old in Northern California. She watched old style crusing ships collect in Boston and New York harbors on her household’s black-and-white tv, and he or she visited the nationwide Freedom Prepare exhibit when it stopped in Oakland. And, in fact, she remembers the fireworks.

“I could not have been extra proud than that night to be an American, and I need my youngsters to really feel the similar means,” Rios stated in an interview.

Rios stated she hopes the 2026 celebrations have a comparable impact, no matter nationwide fights.

“I really feel like we’ll achieve success if as many Individuals as potential really feel like that is the land of alternative,” Rios stated.

The July 4 occasion can be the formal kickoff for planning for the celebrations. America250, a nonpartisan group created by Congress in 2016 to mark the anniversary, will oversee that course of. It has already enlisted the neighborhood app Nextdoor and the YWCA as companions.

“We actually have concepts,” Rios stated, “however we would like to hear concepts from college students. We would love to hear concepts from all elements of the country.”

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