All we have to do is get through one week. Just a couple of days stand between us and a long weekend. But although the summer solstice is behind us, the days seem to be getting longer and longer as our anticipation of a Monday off heightens. The following free events can help you get through the long week and into your vacation.   

Tuesday: Swing by the Circular Congregational Church for this month’s iteration of the Charleston Poetry Series. We may not have the chance to celebrate July 4th if not for the victory at the Battle of Sullivan’s Island, which is honored on June 28th as Carolina Day. Celebrate with a free tour of Fort Moultrie, an Army Band concert, and a lecture by historian Doug MacIntyre.

Wednesday: The Charleston library will host a screening of The Forsyte Saga, based on the Galsworthy novels about a noveau riche English family. The screening will give you an idea of what we would be like had things gone differently many Julys ago: better vocabulary, but in a funnier accent. Starlight Cinema will have a screening of the 2010 version of The Karate Kid. The town of Mt. Pleasant hosts a Franchising 101 Seminar. Nothing more American than another Home Depot.

Thursday: You don’t want to strain something, so give your patriotism a break with the lecture Going Native: Adventures and Misadventures in the South of Spain, where Charleston writer Charlie Geer will recount his experience of moving to and assimilating in southern Spain.

Friday: Whenever I have a strong emotion, I like to express it through interpretive dance. You can do the same and show your patriotism at the July Fourth Street Dance. The dance party will include food vendors and music by Custom 4+2 Band. Patriotism continues with two exhibit openings. The American Dreams exhibition includes the works of Charleston artists Kristy Bishop, Sarah Frierson, and Paul Cristina who weplore what it means to be an American today. Also, Philadelphia pop artist John Stango presents his bold and vibrant paintings with a nod towards life in the States with his series Americana. Ever wonder what the inside of an apple pie looks like? Don Dudenbostel will discuss his Smorgasbord show of culinary x-rays.

Saturday: The Berkeley County Family YMCA hosts the Fourth of July Festival in the Park. The event will kick off a weekend of celebrations with food, artists, crafters, music, a jump castle, and a firework grand finale.

Sunday: Summerville hosts Red, White, and Blue on the Green. The patriotic extravaganza includes everything from face painting to a watermelon-eating contest. Pull out your red and white striped bellbottom jeans for the patriotic costume contest. I think we can all agree that the Star Spangled Banner never sounds so sweet as when it is hummed through a kazoo, so hear that song and more when Rick Hubbard’s famous kazoo band performs at the Red, White, and Blue Show.

Monday: On the Fourth of July, the city will be covered with parties, festivals, and free entertainment. The Patriotic Bike Parade is patriotism in motion and gives you an excuse to have those shiny tassels on your bicycle. The Fourth of July CelebratI’On, Independence Festival in the Park, North Charleston Fourth of July Festival, and the Island of Palms Fourth of July Fireworks Show will all provide great views, firework shows, and plenty of additional entertainment. Grab a blanket, find an open space, and enjoy the fireworks.