Happy 4th of July!
By Katie Arvia published June 25, 2020
It’s time for fireworks, barbecues and patriotic celebrations! This year, the 4th of July falls on a Saturday, which means an entire weekend full of fun. Here are some cool ways to celebrate throughout the Chicago Southland this 4th.
Enjoy a fireworks display
Check out the fireworks from the safety and comfort of your vehicle! The Bridgeview Park District will be displaying “drive-up fireworks” this year at SeatGeek Stadium on July 3. Guests can begin driving up at 7:30 PM and the show will begin at approximately 9:15 PM. This is a free event for the entire family to enjoy! Please be sure to practice social distancing and remain in your vehicles for the duration of the event. For more information, call 708-594-1818 or visit BridgeviewParkDistrict.com.
Residents of Orland Park can enjoy a fireworks display at Centennial Park on July 4. The fireworks will begin at 9:30 PM. This year’s display will incorporate higher altitude fireworks so that residents can also enjoy the fireworks at home. The display, along with synced music will also be streamed live on the village’s YouTube channel. Come out to the park early for a concert performed by Gone 2 Paradise, a Jimmy Buffett tribute band, beginning at 7:30 PM. Please note, due to limited capacity and necessary social distancing measures, access to the Centennial Park parking lots will be restricted to vehicles displaying a current Village of Orland Park sticker. As always, please be sure to practice safe social distancing!
Attend a patriotic parade
A 4th of July parade will take place in New Lenox, beginning at 11:00 AM. The parade will honor military, first responders, healthcare workers, teachers and essential workers. Grocery store, restaurant, construction and pharmacy workers are also encouraged to join and walk in the parade. The parade will follow Cedar Road down Haven to the New Lenox Commons. If you would like to walk in the parade, fill out the online form here! Come out and celebrate the essential workers who have done so much for our communities!
Go for a run, jog or walk
The Veterans Liberty Run & Walk in Orland Park will take place on July 3. Participants can choose between a 1- or 2-mile course through Centennial Park and can complete the course at their own pace. This event will take place between 7:00 AM and 7:00 PM with a modified format to ensure safe social distancing. Participants can choose their race time when registering for the event. All participants will receive a Veterans Liberty Run & Walk t-shirt, a pass to the Centennial Park Aquatic Center, post-race refreshments and entry into the prize raffle. A portion of proceeds will be donated to local veteran organizations. Register for the Veterans Liberty Run & Walk by clicking here.
In Tinley Park, runners can enjoy a self-timed, virtual 5k. Participants can complete the 3.1 miles any time from July 4-18. The Stars & Stripes Virtual 5k can be completed anywhere, from trails to treadmills. The deadline to register is July 2 at 3:00 PM and costs $15 for Tinley Park residents and $20 for non-residents. Curbside packet pick-up will be held on July 3. Each race packet includes a medal, race bib and a t-shirt. Racers planning on competing the 5k on July 4 can also participate in the bib decorating contest! The best bib will receive a prize. Be sure to share your post-race photos on social media using #tppdstars&stripes5k and email your race completion time to Ronald.Woodworth@tinleyparkdistrict.org! For more information or to register for the Stars & Stripes Virtual 5k, visit TinleyParkDistrict.org.
Exercise your right to vote
Mokena residents and businesses are invited to participate in the village’s first 4th of July house/business decorating contest! Participants should decorate the side of their house or business that is most visible from the street so that displays can be seen by passersby without needing to exit cars. Those interested in participating must register here by July 1! Not just Mokena residents can join in on the fun! All entries will be listed on the chamber’s website and Facebook page for the public to view and cast votes. Voting will begin at noon on July 3 and is open until 5:00 PM on July 4. Prizes will be awarded to the best residential entry and best business entry; winners will be announced on Facebook on July 4.
Tinley Park residents can compete in the patriotic door decorating contest. Get festive by adding a pop of red, white and blue to your front door! All entries must be submitted by July 4. You can submit your door decorations on the Facebook event page or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. The top three doors will be shared on social media and fans will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite. A winner will be announced on July 10 and will receive a basket full of summertime goodies!
Sample a drink at a local brewery or winery
Hop on board the Illiana Brew Bus and visit the Chicago Southland’s breweries! From July 4-31, enjoy 19% off all private tours. There are several tour packages available to choose from and all private tours will receive a gift basket with wine, as well as wine glasses or a t-shirt, plus other goodies once aboard the bus. For more information or to book your 4th of July excursion, call 219-595-9633.
Stop by Arrowhead Ales Brewing Company in New Lenox and try the brand-new Proud American Pale Ale, part of Arrowhead’s Heritage Series. Take a 4-pack to go for $12. While you’re there, be sure to also try the Proud American burger, a ½ lb. angus burger with American cheese, lettuce, tomato and onion on a brioche bun, also available for takeout.
Or visit your favorite Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant location and grab a bottle of the July wine of the month, Liberté, a Franco-American red blend sourced from vineyards in the United States and France.
Visit a memorial
The 4th of July is an excellent opportunity to visit some of the war memorials around the Chicago Southland. There are several memorials that honor all five branches of the United States military located throughout the area. To view a complete list of memorials, click here.
Enjoy time with family and friends
Because Illinois is now in Phase 4 of the Restore Illinois plan, many amenities around the Chicago Southland are back open for business.
Members of Brookfield Zoo can visit the nature park on the 4th of July and visit two of the zoo’s newest editions, African lion brothers Brutus and Titus. Visit Haunted Trails in Joliet or Burbank and enjoy a round of mini-golf or play in the game room. The indoor dining area will also be open from noon until 9:00 PM in Joliet and until 10:00 PM in Burbank.
No matter how you choose to celebrate the 4th of July this year, make sure to have fun and stay safe!