By Thursday afternoon, most people in Steamboat Springs already had started thinking about how they would celebrate the holiday.
But Brent Romick, the Steamboat Springs Pro Rodeo Series chairman, doesn't have any spare time for celebration.
If you go The final rodeo performance of the 102nd Cowboys Roundup Days is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. at the Brent Romick Rodeo Arena. Fireworks will follow. Tickets are $13 for adults and $7 for children ages 7 to 15. Children younger than 6 get in free.
"The Cowboys Roundup Days can make or break this rodeo series," Romick said. "We are up over last year for the first two weeks, but this weekend is huge."
Usually, the Fourth of July weekend and Balloon Rodeo weekend (July 15 and 16) are the two biggest rodeos of the year in terms of attendance for the 10-week rodeo series.
Romick said the two weekends often define a year as good or bad. This year, he expects a strong turnout at both rodeos, thanks to Steamboat's reputation for putting on a good show.
He is hoping Mac Altizer, owner of Bad Company Rodeo, will be the star of this year's Cowboy Roundup Days rodeo.
"Bad Company should add some fireworks to the whole deal," Romick said. "Their slogan says to expect the unexpected, but that's what rodeo fans in Steamboat Springs should expect all year long."
Last weekend, Altizer brought in several National Finals Rodeo bucking horses and a bull named Walk this Way that is unridden in 41 tries.
Romick said the move to use six stock contractors this season seems to be paying off with larger crowds, better scores and more contestants.
Although it's still early in the summer, Romick knows just how important it will be to pack the stands at the arena the next two weeks.
"Record crowds help pay the bills," Romick said.
He also wants to see the Steamboat Springs Pro Rodeo Series back in the running for Best Small Outdoor Rodeo of the Year.
Steamboat won the honor in 2002 and was a runner-up to Weatherford, Texas, last year.
"I don't like being first loser," Romick said. "I want this rodeo to be No. 1, and I think we are making the changes that will do that while raising the entertainment value of our rodeo."
The true test of how well the rodeo is doing will come in late August.