Fourth of July fireworks will be back in Elgin, but no parade this year
Fourth of July fireworks will be back this year in Elgin, but not the accompanying annual parade.
The city council voted unanimously Wednesday to approve a $40,000 contract with Mad Bombers Fireworks Productions to bring back the annual show that was canceled in 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
"We've been working pretty hard over the last few weeks just to try and figure out what was going to be feasible as we enter this new phase and this new time for Illinois to get back to the events that we love doing," Elgin Special Events Coordinator Kate O'Leary said during Wednesday's committee of the whole meeting.
O'Leary said that parade planning normally starts in February.
"We didn't have a good idea of what July was gonna look like," she said. "We realized pretty early on that a parade was not going to be something we could do."
The fireworks show is scheduled to begin between 9:15 and 9:30 p.m. on July 4 and will last 20-30 minutes. The pyrotechnics will be discharged from the National Street bridge and can be viewed from Festival Park and the surrounding areas.
An additional $20,000 has been budgeted for staff costs and needed rental materials.
O'Leary said the city has planned a pair of alternatives in lieu of the parade -- the "What Fourth of July Means to Me" home and business decorating contest and a bike decorating contest for kids.
Both events will take place from July 1-11.
Home and businesses need to be decorated by June 25 to be photographed and be listed on a public map. From July 1-11, residents and visitors can vote for their favorites, with winners being chosen in both categories.
Decorating kits will be available for kids to decorate their bikes, strollers, wagons or scooters. Participants are then encouraged to photograph their entries and upload them to social media with the hashtag #bikefourth by July 11. Prizes will be awarded to first, second and third place winners, along with up to 10 honorable mentions. Winners will be announced on July 18.