The Fourth of July holiday weekend will kick off Saturday with fireworks along the lakefront.
The display will light up the skies starting at 9:30 p.m. and should be visible from Grand Avenue on the north to at least 55th Street on the south, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced Friday.
WBBM Newsradio 780 AM and 105.9 FM will provide a music simulcast to accompany the fireworks.
“Putting on a grandiose fireworks display to celebrate both our city’s reopening and Independence Day is an excellent way to kick off the summer we’ve all been waiting for,” Lightfoot said in a statement. “Thanks to the hard work of our residents, who followed public health guidelines and did their part to slow and stop the spread of COVID-19, we are now able to bring back exciting summer traditions like these.”
It’s been more than a decade since Mayor Richard M. Daley’s administration pulled the plug on the city’s signature July 3 fireworks display. In a cost-cutting move, the celebration, centered at Grant Park since 1978, was shifted to three smaller locations in 2010. The downtown event had routinely drawn upward of 1 million people to the lakefront.
Navy Pier has been the de facto “host” in recent years but its July 4th display was canceled in 2020 due to coronavirus restrictions. The Independence Day event was again canceled in 2021 by Navy Pier, which cited a reopening schedule that didn’t provide adequate time to prepare for crowds.
The fireworks show is part of the city’s “Open Chicago” initiative, as residents, businesses and cultural institutions rebound from the pandemic.
Note: This story was originally published June 14 and has been updated with additional details.