Happy 4th of July!

Happy Birthday America! And good morning to you, CivMixers.

It’s going to be a perfect day for all matter of outdoor pursuits – copious sunshine, zero percent chance of rain and temperatures in the mid-90s.

Just remember to be smart about the sun, and safe whether you’re grilling, enjoying a few alcoholic beverages, boating, swimming or shooting off fireworks – especially if you’re shooting off fireworks.

The state Office of Fire Prevention and Control reminds us that it’s illegal to buy or use fireworks that project into the air. Only sparkling devices are legal. And some counties have opted out and have prohibited the sale and use of sparkling devices, including Schenectady and Columbia.

Be mindful of the health of your furry friends in this heat, and also here are some tips for fireworks phobic pooches.

Could you pass the U.S. citizenship test? Try out your skills here.

The ValleyCats will make it 18 straight Independence Day celebrations at home when they take on the Hudson Valley Renegades at 6:30 p.m. tonight.

…There’s lots of other celebrations taking place all over the region.

Free outdoor picnics are taking place in Albany (put on by the Capital City Rescue Mission) and Schenectady (hosted by the City Mission of Schenectady).

The Firecracker-4 race steps off at 9 a.m. this morning, and registration starts at 7 a.m., Some 3,000 people are expected to take part in the 4-mile road race through Saratoga Springs which celebrates and honors America’s history.

Best Cleaners on State Street in Schenectady cleans American flags for free.

If you happen to be in Milton, check out Zac Williams’ patriotic lawn.

After Nike pulled a Fourth of July shoe featuring Betsy Ross’s flag for the 13 American colonies, Nine Line Apparel, a veteran-owned company, is responding with shirts of its own, and calling for a boycott of the athletic shoe and apparel giant.

Washington, D.C. is preparing for President Donald Trump’s big speech and military spectacle – one of the most unusual Fourth of July celebrations the capital has known. The president says it will be “the show of a lifetime.”

A day after pledging that the 2020 census would not ask respondents about their citizenship, U.S. Justice Department officials reversed course and said they were hunting for a way to restore the question on orders from the president.

Trump said migrants were “living far better” in Border Patrol detention centers than in their home countries, one day after his own administration reported that children in some facilities were denied hot meals or showers, and that cells were so crowded that migrants begged to be freed.

The New York Civil Liberties Union is walking back parts of its recent report indicating an extreme racial disparity in marijuana enforcement in Schenectady County.

The stories of four more patients’ neglect at Albany County Nursing Home emerged yesterday in an amended complaint filed a day earlier in U.S. District Court. The original complaint was filed in May by Lori LaRock, who says her father’s death was a direct result of neglect by nursing home staff.

An audit from Comptroller Tom DiNapoli’s office has identified more than $12 million in overruns at new I Love NY highway rest areas.

City officials in Troy say $250,000 in new revenue from the hotel bed tax will be used to promote tourism and attract new business investment. (Assuming the governor signs the 4 percent tax passed by the Legislature).

Five people were forced out of their home after a fire in Cohoes broke out late last night.

A child daycare in the Columbia County town of Stockport is closed after an FBI raid. State Police say the business at 6581 State Route 9 was operating without license.

A van that swerved off the Thruway yesterday injured a state trooper and also nearly struck a fire official, Ravena Fire Chief Jeff D’Ambrosio said.

Residents of the city of Schenectady have the best-tasting drinking water in the county, according to the majority of voters in this year’s annual county-wide drinking water taste contest. The competition was held yesterday during the farmers market in downtown Schenectady. The town of Rotterdam placed second.

Down in NYC, the Tiffany Cabán-Melinda Katz Democratic primary battle for Queens DA is headed for a recount — and a potential court fight. After a daylong manual recount of thousands of paper ballots, Democratic Party favorite Katz pulled ahead of insurgent candidate Cabán by 20 votes, according to the city Board of Elections.

Katz declared victory. The new vote total meant that she drew twice as many votes from the paper ballots as Cabán did.

Caban’s side, meanwhile, vowed to fight, challenging the decision by elections officials to invalidate all but 487 of the 2,816 affidavit ballots cast.

Berkshire County is about to have a fifth recreational marijuana store. Canna Provisions will open tomorrow morning on Housatonic Street in Lee, just off exit two of the Massachusetts Turnpike.

Two polls indicate that a new top-tier has emerged in the wake of last week’s debate between the Democratic 2020 contender: former Vice President Joe Biden, California Sen. Kamala Harris, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren, and Vermont Se. Bernie Sanders.

The Netherlands women’s soccer team emerged as a 1-0 winner in its semifinal match against Sweden, and will face off against the U.S. team in the World Cup final Sunday.

The Dutch, the reigning European champion, will be playing in the final for the first time. The U.S. will be trying to win a record fourth world title.



1 Comment

  1. Dave

    It was a nice day in Thatcher Park. I don’t know why more people don’t go there.


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