Next Saturday is Fourth of July. Even after 28 weeks of quarantine, June has flown by.

I realize quarantine was only 8 or 9 weeks, but at the time it seemed like 28 weeks, right?

Every morning my kids would ask what we were doing that day. Our plans never changed. We survived, learned a lot of lessons and are happy to be back vising our favorite restaurants and stores.

After a rough start to 2020, I am announcing a big Independence Day celebration this year. We need an excuse to decorate, cook-out and celebrate our freedom. This idea fits in perfectly with the first annual Patriotic Porch Competition coordinated by Keep Opelika Beautiful.

The friendly competition begins this week. To participate, photos can be submitted to KOB through email ( or Facebook Messenger. Please include the homeowner name and address. This information will not be published.

Photos will be posted on the KOB Facebook page for viewing and voting. Each “Like” on the original photo will be one vote. There will be a separate photo album on Facebook for each city ward. Make sure you vote for homes in every ward, not just where you live.

There will be one winner for each city ward. Besides the awards from Facebook voting, we will have a Mayor’s Choice Award. The other recognition will be the Creativity Award. This will be determined by KOB volunteers.

So, how do you plan to win one the awards? I will give you a few tips. Yesterday we were riding through National Village and I spotted a house with the most perfect decorations.

Of course, Old Glory was hanging from a porch column. A cute white bench on the front porch had the prettiest flag pillows. The welcome sign leaning up against the front door was red, white and blue. On the steps was a navy planter with white inpatients. The front porch caught my eye because it was well organized, not over done but decorated in good taste.

I was driving to TigerTown earlier this week and saw another porch worthy of an award. This house had blue chairs with white pillows and planters with red geraniums. The flag was hanging from the brick on the side of the porch.

There are so many creative options for making your front porch a winner. I look forward to seeing your pictures!

Do not forget about the O Grow’s Farmers Market every Tuesday afternoon. We visited last week and came home with a delicious supply of tomatoes, squash, jelly and peaches. If you get there early, you can purchase delicious breads and muffins.

We enjoyed catching up with old friends. Parking was simple and it was easy to access the market. Hope to see you there next week.

Tipi Colley Miller is the director of Keep Opelika Beautiful Inc. and writes a weekly column. Contact her at

Tipi Colley Miller is the director of Keep Opelika Beautiful Inc. and writes a weekly column. Contact her at

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