It's as American as apple pie, the Fourth of July parade that brought thousands of Alaskans and their kids out to the park strip downtown. As part of our Independence Day edition of Spotlight on Youth, see what they think about the annual tradition.

While many of us have either watched or participated in the downtown parade, celebrating the holiday takes on a whole new perspective, when you see it through the eyes of our young ones.

Even though Evan Sands and Zoey Ehrhart may not fully realize what they are part of, the four and five year olds are quick learners. With excitement everywhere, who can blame them. Because the pair are part of a large group of Alaska kids who get to celebrate Independence Day on the big stage.

"It feels good because it means you can carry on the tradition," said 11-year-old Taylor McCart, who was participating in the parade as part of the Polar Mt. View Little League.

Tradition is what brings the Alaska Military Youth Academy cadets downtown

"I feel blessed to be here, I feel honored to apart of the July 4th parade," said cadet Abeny Makoi.

Makoi says after hours of drill, shining boots, and fixing berets, this is the cadets' chance to pay their respects.

"The one word I can say about Fourth of July is celebration, just celebrating our independence and honoring those people who shed their blood for this country," Makoi said.

A country that was built on freedom that Alaskan children appreciate, which is why they were there to celebrate America's birthday in whatever way they can.