Flash Flood Watch
until MON 12:00 AM MST, Northwest Plateau, Lake Havasu and Fort Mohave, Northwest Deserts, Grand Canyon Country, Coconino Plateau, Yavapai County Mountains, Little Colorado River Valley in Coconino County, Little Colorado River Valley in Navajo County, Little Colorado River Valley in Apache County, Western Mogollon Rim, Eastern Mogollon Rim, White Mountains, Northern Gila County, Lake Mead National Recreation Area, Yavapai County Valleys and Basins, Oak Creek and Sycamore Canyons, Western Pima County including Ajo/Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, Tohono O'odham Nation including Sells, Upper Santa Cruz River and Altar Valleys including Nogales, Tucson Metro Area including Tucson/Green Valley/Marana/Vail, South Central Pinal County including Eloy/Picacho Peak State Park, Southeast Pinal County including Kearny/Mammoth/Oracle, Upper San Pedro River Valley including Sierra Vista/Benson, Eastern Cochise County below 5000 ft including Douglas/Wilcox, Upper Gila River and Aravaipa Valleys including Clifton/Safford, White Mountains of Graham and Greenlee Counties including Hannagan Meadow, Galiuro and Pinaleno Mountains including Mount Graham, Chiricahua Mountains including Chiricahua National Monument, Dragoon/Mule/Huachuca and Santa Rita Mountains including Bisbee/Canelo Hills/Madera Canyon, Santa Catalina and Rincon Mountains including Mount Lemmon/Summerhaven, Baboquivari Mountains including Kitt Peak, Aguila Valley, Northwest Valley, Tonopah Desert, Gila Bend, Buckeye/Avondale, Cave Creek/New River, Deer Valley, Central Phoenix, North Phoenix/Glendale, New River Mesa, Scottsdale/Paradise Valley, Rio Verde/Salt River, East Valley, Fountain Hills/East Mesa, South Mountain/Ahwatukee, Southeast Valley/Queen Creek, Superior, Northwest Pinal County, West Pinal County, Apache Junction/Gold Canyon, Tonto Basin, Mazatzal Mountains, Pinal/Superstition Mountains, Sonoran Desert Natl Monument, San Carlos, Dripping Springs, Globe/Miami, Southeast Gila County

White House 4th of July celebration still on despite COVID-19 pandemic

President Donald Trump is moving ahead with a lower-key “Salute to America” celebration this year on July Fourth, despite concerns from some lawmakers about the crowds the event could generate during the coronavirus pandemic.

Download the FOX 5 DC News App for Local Breaking News and Weather

FLICKR_Trump4thJuly_1

resident Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump arrive onstage at the Salute to America event Thursday, July 4, 2019, at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. (Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks)

Washington has held an Independence Day celebration for decades, featuring a parade along Constitution Avenue, a concert on the Capitol lawn with music by the National Symphony Orchestra and fireworks beginning at dusk near the Washington Monument.

Trump altered the lineup last year by adding his speech, moving the fireworks closer to the Lincoln Memorial and summoning an array of tanks and warplanes to entertain the crowds.

The White House said that the president and first lady Melania Trump will host the event this year from the White House’s South Lawn and the Ellipse. It said the president will deliver remarks and that the ceremony will include music, military demonstrations and flyovers. Last year, Trump spoke near the steps of the Lincoln Memorial.

“As President Trump has said, there will be an Independence Day celebration this year and it will have a different look than 2019 to ensure the health and safety of those attending,” said White House spokesman Judd Deere. “The American people have shown tremendous courage and spirit in the fight against this global pandemic just as our forefathers did in the fight to secure our independence, and both deserve celebration on America’s birthday this year.”

CORONAVIRUS IN DC, MARYLAND AND VIRGINIA

FLICKR_Trump4thJuly_2.jpg

irst Lady Melania Trump waves as she and President Donald J. Trump arrive onstage at the Salute to America event Thursday, July 4, 2019, at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. (Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks)

Democratic lawmakers from the Washington region have stated their strong opposition to an event like last year’s.

“Given the current COVID-19 crisis, we believe such an event would needlessly risk the health and safety of thousands of Americans. Further, this event would come at the cost of millions of taxpayer dollars while we are facing an unprecedented economic downturn due to the pandemic,” the lawmakers said in a May 26 letter to Defense Secretary Mark Esper and Interior Secretary David Bernhardt.

VOTE NOW: Would you be comfortable going to the National Mall to watch the 4th of July fireworks?

One of the lawmakers who signed the letter, Rep. Don Beyer, D-Va., said after Friday’s announcement from the White House that the president should be capable of celebrating Independence Day responsibly.

“Instead he is using the military to stage yet another costly political photo op,” Beyer asserted.

CORONAVIRUS RESOURCES: Everything You Need to Know

The crowds on the National Mall are expected to be smaller, in part because one of the biggest draws of the day, the annual parade, has been cancelled. The parade is co-hosted by the National Park Service and a website for the event said local leadership projected that COVID-19 infection levels will not be abated to the degree that it would be safe or prudent to conduct the parade.

The annual fireworks show will go on.

MORE RESOURCES:

Your coronavirus questions answered

Coronavirus: Symptoms, testing and how to prepare amid growing COVID-19 outbreak

LIVE: Interactive map tracks global spread of COVID-19

How to help during the coronavirus pandemic

© 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.