2019 Independence Day calendar

The Blue Ridge High School marching band marches in the 2018 Champaign County Freedom Celebration parade near State Farm Center in Champaign.

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Area fireworks and other happenings celebrating the Fourth of July holiday include the following:



Arthur Freedom Celebration. All day, downtown and Jurgens Park. Craft shows, food and Freedom Parade at 2 p.m., downtown. Activities at park include music, skydivers, powered parachutes and food vendors, with fireworks at dusk. Call 217-543-2242 or visit arthuril.us.


Ice Cream and Independence. Frozen yogurt served at 5 p.m. Saturday on Park Avenue, right outside the Virginia Theatre (203 W. Park, C) before the 7 p.m. ‘Celebrating Our American Heritage’ concert inside. Join Brian Barnhart and WDWS in celebrating Independence Day in style with the best in American music performed by the Champaign-Urbana Civic Wind Band, featuring Nathan Gunn. Tickets $9-$15, free for military veterans and active duty service members. Call 217-356-9063 or visit thevirginia.org.


Fireworks at Gao Grotto. Gates open at 4 p.m. Saturday at 400 Denmark Road, Danville. Food will be available for purchase. Fireworks at dark overlooking Lake Vermilion. Admission $2. Rain date is Sunday. Call 217-442-8344.


Gifford Community Celebration. Continues at 6:30 p.m. today at Emond Park, with a 5K Run/Walk at 7 a.m. and 1K Kids Fun Run at 8:30 a.m.; downtown parade at 11 a.m., followed by music, food, inflatables, face painting, knockerball, pageant, waterball, kiddie tractor pull, car show. Festival ends with fireworks at dusk at Werner Roessler Park. Visit facebook.com/GiffordCommunityCelebration.


Independence Day Celebration. 1-4 p.m., Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site. Celebrate old-fashioned Independence Day by joining Lincoln Log Cabin’s interpreters in game of town ball, believed by some to be a precursor to baseball. Before game, the flag will be raised on the Lincoln Farm, followed by a reading of Declaration of Independence. Call 217-345-1845.


Tolono Fun Days. Continues today at Tolono’s West Side Park. Service and Masonic breakfast at 7 a.m.; parade at 11 a.m.; helicopter rides ($25 for 5-minute tour) from noon-8 p.m.; music from 5:30-9:30 p.m., around the time when fireworks start. Happening both days: golf cart raffle, food court/concessions, flea market, petting zoo, pony wheel rides, inflatables. VisitFacebook/TolonoFunday.

SUNDAY, June 30


Arcola Fourth of July Celebration Fireworks. 8-10 p.m., Kelley Moore Park (East Illinois 133). Visit arcolachamber.com.



Fireworks at Turtle Run Golf Club (332 E. Liberty Lane). Course closes at 1 p.m. Food will be available at 5 p.m., with fireworks at dusk. Call 217-442-8876 or visit pgapro@turtle-run.com.FisherFireworks at the Fisher Fairgrounds. Scheduled for 9-10 p.m. at 226 E. Sangamon St. Check out the Nerf Wars happening beforehand.


Monticello Freedom Festival. 4-11 p.m. at Lodge Park. Festivities start at 4 p.m. with inflatables, kids games, food vendors, DJ Big Daddy Mac, balloons, pony rides, novelties, airbrush and a raffle. Fireworks at dusk with Tatum Wichus singing the national anthem. Parking’s limited at Lodge but more spaces available at Monticello High School, where buses will transport people to and from the park.

Train ride to fireworks. Monticello Railway Museum offers train ride ($10-$12, under 2 free with adult) from downtown’s Wabash Depot to Lodge Park. Bring chairs, blankets, insect repellent and make reservations. Call 877-762-9011 or visit mrym.org.


Paxton Area Chamber’s Old-Fashioned Fourth of July Celebration. Festivities start with 6 p.m. Little Mr. & Miss Paxton contest at Pells Park pavilion. Celebration continues Thursday.


Rantoul Freedom Celebration. 4-11 p.m., Hap Parker Aquatic Center (320 W. Flessner Ave.). Events include Sundowners Anything on Wheels Car Show; open pool (4-9 p.m.); bands on stage; musical chairs; track and field exhibition and events for kids by the Rantoul Rockets and RTHS Track Team; food vendors/concessions; sand volleyball tournament; Hall Brothers monster truck rides; fireworks at dusk. Call 217-893-3323 or visit rantoulchamber.com/resources.


Sibley Sparkling Shuffle 5K. Registration begins at 7:30 p.m.; run starts at 9 p.m. at Sibley Pavilion on Sciota Street. Event raises money for local charities for disadvantaged children in the Ford County area. 3-mile course features strung lights, lighted props, actors, animatronic presidents and an Uncle Sam, lighted houses and a small roadside band. Pyreflies Burners will put on live fire performance show to music. Call 217-417-7196 or visit sibleysparklingshuffle.yolasite.com.



Bement Fourth of July Celebration. Begins with 2 p.m. parade through downtown business district and along North Macon Street. Afterward: activities at Forest Preserve Park, including bingo (grand prize a $300 Visa gift card), cake walks, watermelon eating contest, craft/food vendors. Fireworks will be at dusk.


Champaign County Freedom Celebration. Begins with 7:30 a.m. registration for Youth Run and 5K Race/Walk near First and Kirby, with run at 8:30 a.m., race/walk at 9:05 a.m. 11:05 a.m. parade begins near First and Kirby, continues east on Florida to Lincoln, proceeds north on Lincoln to California, turns onto Illinois to disperse and exit area at Goodwin. Evening festivities begin at 7 at Kirby between First and Oak and include music on main stage/children’s activities. Around 9:10 that night: announcements, ‘The Star-Spangled Banner,’ invocation, and retiring of our nation’s flag. Fireworks at 9:15. Parking at State Farm Center and Activities and Recreation Center lots. All activities free. Visit july4th.net.

Clark Park Neighborhood Fourth of July Parade. 9-10 a.m. at McKinley and Daniel. Small neighborhood’s annual parade around the park, with St. Peter’s United Church of Christ kazoo band. Snacks provided.

Sholem Fourth of July. 11 a.m.-7 p.m. at Sholem Aquatic Center (2205 W. Sangamon Drive, C). Face painting, watermelon-eating contest, adult cannonball contest, free ice cream-eating contest, concessions food and drink specials all day. Call 217-398-2581, email Sholemcustomerservice@champaignparks.com or visit champaignparks.com.


Independence Day Celebration. 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Mr. Lincoln’s Square downtown. Day begins with a free breakfast, served by Clinton fire and police departments, and also includes a flag-raising ceremony, live music, dunk tank, balloon artist and face painting. Call 217-935-3364 or visit facebook.com/ClintonsCelebration.


Fourth of July Celebration. Activities at Village Hall (500 E. Second St.) at 4 p.m. Parade at 6 p.m. Fireworks at dusk.

Lake Shelbyville

Fireworks Over Lake Shelbyville. Battle Creek Band will provide music (6-9 p.m.), with fireworks to follow at desk. Traffic alerts: The point at Dam West Recreation Area will be partially closed off for fireworks; after the show, traffic will be directed to Ninth Street from the West Recreation Area and to Route 16 from the East.


Freedom Fest. 3-10 p.m., Lake of the Woods Forest Preserve.Starting at 3: Concessions, family activities, Music in Motion. At 9, following a tribute to service men and women, comes the fireworks display, set to music. Rain date: Friday. $2 admission.


Oakwood Fourth of July Celebration. Parade at 11 a.m. Food vendors, beer tent and entertainment start at 4 p.m. at Oakwood Park. Hillbilly Deluxe, featuring Jon Foley and Ryan Downing, plays at 6 p.m., with fireworks at dusk. Parking at the old tracks, with a shuttle providing transportation to and from the park. Call 217-354-4255.


Paxton Area Chamber’s Celebration (Day 2). Continues, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday. Daytime activities at Pells Park start with a Do or Dey 5K at 8 a.m., followed by car show registration, patriotic music, winners of the Golden Deeds awards and Little Mr. and Miss Paxton pageant announced, Little Vibrations performance, worship service, lunch stands open, antique tractor show, music at the Pavilion, kids area and bounce houses, bingo, car show and watermelon eating contest. Evening activities at Bixby Park on Paxton’s southeast edge include food trucks from 6 to 9 p.m. and fireworks at 9 p.m. Call 217-379-4655.


Rantoul Freedom Celebration (Day 2). Rotary pancake breakfast (7-11 a.m., Rantoul HS cafetorium) gets day started. RACC 2019 Freedom Celebration Parade begins at 9:30 a.m. on Maplewood and ends at Wabash Park.


Fourth of July Celebration. 11 a.m. parade starts behind grade school (line up at 10:30) and ends at Christman Park, where Legion Fish Fry and water slide get going at noon. Also: duck race at 4 p.m., fireworks at 9.


Fourth of July Celebration on Main Street. 10 a.m. parade with military tributes, antique tractors and cars, fire trucks, horses and more. On tap after the parade: kids’ fun fair at the church; live music; 10th annual Seymour Show N Shine car/bike show (noon-4 on Main Street). Fireworks at dusk at the fire station.


Sibley Area Fourth of July Celebration (Day 2). 8:30 a.m. until after fireworks at Sibley Lake. Among free highlights of “An American Fourth of July” program: food stands (open at 7 a.m. at pavilion); children’s fishing derby (8:30 a.m.); Air Life Helicopter on display (11 a.m. to 1 p.m., weather/schedule permitting); parade (11:30 a.m.); old-fashioned kids games and family relay races at (1 p.m., followed by family relay and other games); remote-control air and boat show (5 p.m.). For a historical narrated tour of places of interest in town, meet at 2 p.m. at intersection of Sciotia and Ohio streets. Entertainment by Jani Massey Music at 6:30 p.m. and fireworks at dusk. Rain date for fireworks only is Friday.


Fourth of July at the Pool. 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., Crystal Lake Park Family Aquatic Center (1401 N. Broadway Ave.). There will be giveaways, cannon-ball and wall-climbing contests, various afternoon activities. $6 for residents, $9 non-residents.


Patriotic July 4th Ice Cream Social. 11 a.m., St. Mary’s Hall (231 N. State St.). Celebration includes patriotic songs, prayers for nation, a public reading of the Declaration of Independence, talk by State Rep. Mike Marron (R-Fithian) and ice cream made by Flesor’s Candy Kitchen of Tuscola.

FRIDAY, July 5


Independence Day Celebration (Day 2). Fireworks scheduled for around 9:15 p.m. in the vicinity of Route 51 and Kleeman Drive.


Fireworks at Turtle Run Golf Club and Banquet Center. Showtime: Around 9:30 p.m. at 332 E Liberty Lane.


Reds, Whites and the Blues concert. 6-9 p.m.,Gate House Lawn, Allerton Park & Retreat Center (515 Old Timber Road). Sip on red and white wines while swaying to bluesy tunes of Billy Galt and the Blues Deacons and the James Armstrong Band. Food/drinks available for purchase. Bring your own blankets/chairs. Free admission, but donation of $5/person or $10/family is suggested, and will be collected at gate. Call 217-333-3287, email allerton@illinois.edu or visit allerton.illinois.edu.


Rankin’s Fourth of July celebration. Two-day event at Centennial Park starts with food stands (3-10 p.m.), beer tent (4 p.m.-1 a.m.), antique tractor, four-wheel truck and stock farmer tractor pull (6 p.m.).



Danville Boat Club’s ‘Thunder Over Lake Vermilion’ Celebration. Doors open at 5 p.m. at 15750 Boat Club Road. Food served from 5:30-8 p.m. in dining room or at the lake. Music by Nuthin Fancy starts at 6:30 p.m., and will play after fireworks, scheduled to start around 9:30 p.m. Bring lawn chairs. $5 for admission to clubhouse and grounds for adults. Kids under 10 free. Rain date: Sunday.

Fourth of July celebration with the Dans. The Dans host the Springfield Sliders at 6:30 p.m. at Danville Stadium (610 Highland Blvd.). Prior to first pitch, there will be a hot air balloon flyover (weather permitting), care of Balloons Over Vermilion. Admission to game/fireworks afterwards: $6 for adults, $3 for kids K-8, free for 5 and younger.


Rankin’s Fourth of July celebration (Day 2). 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Centennial Park. Highlights: beer tent (11 a.m. to 1 a.m.); adult water-ball fight (11 a.m. to 2 p.m.); music acts (noon-2); all-ages cake walk (2-3 p.m.); kids water-ball fight (3); p.m.); kids games and activities, including contests for pie eating, watermelon seed spitting, joke telling, egg tossing and pig calling (5-7 p.m.); DJ Sound Explosions (9 p.m.-midnight); and fireworks (around 9).


Tuscola Sparks in the Park. Ervin Park lineup includes 10 a.m. parade, fireworks in the evening and assorted activities in between (mud volleyball, 3-on-3 tournament and new this year, Ninja Extreme Challenge Course).

SUNDAY, July 7

Villa Grove

Villa Grove Freedom Celebration. 3-10 p.m., Richman Park. Featured: inflatables, concessions, bike parade, live music, car show and fireworks at dusk.