Parade theme: The Fourth Awakens

Arguably the biggest family day of the year in Evanston is the Fourth of July, and this year is no exception.

Sponsored by a private non-profit organization, the Evanston Fourth of July Association, events include an award-winning parade, a tennis tournament, playground activities for the kids, a Kids Fun Run, a band concert by the lake, and a massive lakefront fireworks display that can be seen from most lakefront parks.

Playground Activities
Events will begin at 9 a.m. with roller skating and refreshments at the Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center, located at 1655 Foster St., and family playground activities at seven Evanston locations: Lincolnwood School, 2600 Colfax St.; Willard School, 2700 Hurd Ave.; Robert Crown Center, 1701 Main St.; Kamen East Park, South Blvd. and Barton Ave.; Baker Park, Forest Ave. and Keeney St.; ETHS Track Area, 1600 Dodge Ave. (change of location due to construction at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Literary and Fine Arts School); and Raymond Park, Chicago Ave. and Lake St. Playground activities include Frisbee, jump rope competitions, sack races, pie eating contests, soccer ball kick for distance competition, and more. 

 Fun Run
Children ages 12 years and younger are invited to take part in the half-mile Kids Fun Run. The run begins at 12:45 p.m. at Ackerman Park, located at Central St. and McDaniel Ave. The $10 registration fee includes a t-shirt and packet to the first 200 registered, plus finish line refreshments. All proceeds benefit the Evanston Fourth of July Association.

Tennis Tournament
The finals of the citywide tennis tournament managed by the Evanston Tennis Association will be held from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Ackerman Park.

The award-winning Evanston 4th of July Parade begins at 2 p.m. on Central Street at Central Park Avenue and travels east to Ryan Field. Lawn chairs may be placed along Central Street beginning at 6 a.m. on Friday, July 1, in accordance with city ordinance. The 2016 parade theme is “The Fourth Awakens.”

Concert & Fireworks
The Palatine Concert Band will perform from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Dawes Park, located at Sheridan Road and Church Street. Lakefront fireworks set to music will begin at approximately 9:15 p.m.; tune in to FM 90.5. Fireworks are visible from most lakefront parks.

Free parking will be available in downtown Evanston public parking lots.

All aspects of the celebration are funded by voluntary contributions from businesses and individuals. For more information, visit the association’s website.


Charles Bartling

Charles Bartling

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio stations and business-oriented magazines.

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