While some people were preparing for the Fourth of July by stocking up on fireworks and barbecue fare, Joe Spangler spent Tuesday, July 2 kneeling down on the hard concrete of his driveway in Fishers, Indiana. It took the 66-year-old all afternoon to transcribe the Declaration of Independence on the pavement in red, white, and blue chalk—an Independence Day tradition he's kept up for 10 years, The Indianapolis Star reports.
Until the rain washes it away, every word of the document proclaiming the 13 original colonies' freedom from Great Britain—from "When in the course of human events" down to Thomas Jefferson's signature—will be visible outside Spangler's home. Since he started doing it a decade ago, his neighborhoods have become fond of the tradition, and he plans to continue it for as long as possible.
"[It's] a lot of feeling of regretting it the next evening or morning, when I get up a little stiffer from kneeling and bending over all day, but it’s always fun," he told IndyStar.
He and his wife Barb prepare for the Fourth of July each year by hunting online for chalk in just the right colors. But the actual writing is the hard part: With more than 1300 words to write out, filling his driveway with the Declaration can take hours.
The labor-intensive project was borne out of Spangler's interest in the American Revolution. He studied John Adams as part of his master's degree and loves the musical 1776, which follows the events surrounding the signing of the Declaration of Independence. The annual tradition, he says, is a way to remember the real history behind the July 4 festivities.
If you don't have time to transcribe a historical document onto your driveway, you can still take time to remember some history this Fourth of July. Here are some facts about America's founding fathers.
[h/t Indy Star]