Patriotism will shine brightly this Independence Day
With Osama bin Laden no longer a threat, Americans' patriotic spirit will be on full display this Fourth of July. According to a new survey, millions of celebrants will make Uncle Sam proud this year by wearing patriotic clothing, watching fireworks, attending parades, or hosting a cookout.
NRF's annual Independence Day survey, conducted by BIGresearch, should give retailers a reason to celebrate. This year, 20.1% of consumers will buy patriotic merchandise, up from 16.2% last year. And, though the summer heat is upon us, 64.4% of celebrants will host or attend a cookout or picnic, up from 61.9% last year. When it comes to other traditional celebrations, nearly half (44.7%) plan to watch fireworks or attend a community celebration.
Shopping and admiring fireworks won't be the only items on the "to-do" list for many families: more are also planning on traveling or taking a vacation. Despite high gas prices, 31 million people will pack up their beach gear, sunscreen, visors, flip flops and shorts for a summer getaway, up from 27 million people who took advantage of the three-day weekend last year.
A renewed sense of pride is also evident by the patriotic merchandise found in many American households. In 2011, nearly 126 million people said they have a flag, up from 124 million in 2010. Eighty-nine million have U.S.-themed apparel, up from 86 million last year, and the number of people who own patriotic decor also increased significantly from 2010 (62 million vs. 56 million last year).