Thousands of Families Celebrate July 4 Holiday Weekend at Chicago’s Navy Pier – NBC Chicago

Saturday night ended with a spectacular fireworks display at Chicago’s Navy Pier, gathering thousands of families to celebrate the July 4 holiday weekend.

“We always watch the fireworks over there in Elgin, Illinois, so much fun, today we tried to see them here at Navy Pier,” said Jesus Barraza.

He is celebrating with his girlfriend. Both are watching fireworks at Navy Pier for the first time.

“I’m pretty excited,” he said. “We have the front row to love the view. I’m quite excited!”

Katie O’Brien and her family spent the afternoon walking downtown and said it was her first time back at Navy Pier in a long time.

“I haven’t been to Chicago as much lately because of COVID and the restrictions,” she said. “But it’s nice to be back. We usually get out a lot in the summer, so it’s nice to be here again.”

At any major event, downtown security is a top priority for the police.

“I feel very safe,” said Lizzie O’Brien. “Like all the time I’ve been here, I haven’t been anywhere near that I don’t feel safe.”

Visitors to Navy Pier had to go through a security check before entering on Saturday night. The popular tourist attraction expects tens of thousands of visitors over the holiday weekend.

“One of the things we do have is security at all our entrances,” said Navy Pier spokesman Felicia Bolton. ‘We check bags, we wander around. You’ve seen agents, CPD, Homeland Security and so many different agencies here to make sure everyone is safe.”

The July 4th celebration marks a special time for Patrice King who is from Texas and so many others after COVID.

“I feel like we’re on the other side of COVID,” King said. “It’s a new freedom to get out there and enjoy each other and celebrate our nation’s independence.”

The fireworks show lasted about 10 minutes. Navy Pier said this year’s show has 50% more shelling, meaning more volume and bigger fireworks.

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