Freebies, discounts on Independence Day

Companies offering deals to customers

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Fireworks over Lake St. Clair from Belle Maer Harbor.

MIAMI - Several companies and restaurants are offering freebies on July 4th.

A few of the holiday deals:

• Free eats. Active duty military — and vets — with proof of service, get free meals (up to $15 value) on July 4 at 170 participating Iron Skillet and Country Pride home-style restaurants, located inside truck stores, whose core customers are truck drivers. Last year's promo served more than 15,000 servicemen and women, says John Ponczoch, senior vice president of food service operations at Travel Centers of America.

• Cheap eats. Boston Market offers four different Family Meal options — meals that feed three to six people — at 50% off on July 4, with a coupon. When it ran the promotion last July 4, sales zoomed 34% vs. July 4 the previous year, says Sara Bittorf, chief brand officer.

• Cheap drinks. Jamba Juice has a buy-one-get-one-free smoothie promo through July 7 that requires a coupon from, says chief brand officer Julie Washington.

• Paint deals. Through July 8, Sherwin-Williams paint stores are offering 30% off most paint and stains — with some locations open July 4.

• Shoe bargains. Payless ShoeSource has an offer to buy one pair, get the second pair 50% off — with coupon.

• Free advice. Some 25 grill masters who work in LongHorn Steakhouse restaurants, will provide grilling tips to the grilling-challenged, July 3-6, during peak grilling hours (2 p.m. to 7 p.m. EST) to folks phoning 1-855-LH-GRILL. Or, post a question on LongHorn's Facebook page and grill masters will answer in real time.

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