‘The Fourth Awakens’ in Evanston this Independence Day

Mariana Alfaro, Web Editor

Evanston is preparing for its Independence Day celebration, which will begin at 9 a.m. on Monday with a series of playground games and competitions for the city’s youngest.

The day’s activities — hosted by Evanston’s privately funded Fourth of July Association — include a ‘Kids Fun Run,’ where children under the age of 12 can run a half-mile race benefitting the association. Children can also participate in jump rope and frisbee competitions throughout seven different Evanston playgrounds, which will be hosting these games until 11 a.m.

A tennis tournament managed by the Evanston Tennis Association is also on the schedule from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Ackerman Park.

The 95th Evanston Fourth of July parade is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. on Central Street and Park Avenue, traveling east to Northwestern’s Ryan Field. The theme for this year’s parade is “The Fourth Awakens.”

“(The theme) is a play on words with the new Star Wars movie,” said Tracy Alden, president of the Fourth of July Association. “We work with this one design company and they come up with original artwork to match the theme.”

Alden said he expects more politicians to participate in this year’s parade, given that this is an election year.

“(Rep.) Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), who’s running for Senate, will be there,” he said. “There’s always politicians. They can get a lot of exposure from the press.”

Other events during the day include a Palatine Concert Band performance in Dawes Park at 7:30 p.m followed by traditional fireworks on the lakefront at 9:15 p.m.

Alden said the day’s events are all planned and paid for by the Fourth of July Association, meaning no taxpayer dollars go into the events.

“The city provides public safety police and traffic control and cleaning up,” he said. “But it is the Fourth of July Association who do all the work and make everything happen.”

In Chicago, locals and visitors alike can celebrate Independence Day during this year’s Navy Pier celebration. The pier will host a fireworks show presented by the Illinois Lottery, which will begin at 9:30 p.m.

Email: [email protected]