Following on the heels of South Elgin’s announcement this week that its 4th of July parade has been cancelled due to “lack of participation,” the City of Aurora has followed suit, citing the same reason.
The parade will be replaced by a “4th of July Procession” comprised of a parade of public safety vehicles and a Heroes’ Trolley of local veterans. The Procession begins at 10 a.m. at Phillips Park and will travel throughout the city.
First held in 2020, the procession model was necessary during the start of the pandemic and was well-received by the community. While the Fourth of July Parade returned to downtown last year, participation was lower than desired, but consistent with declining spectator participation before 2020.
After further consideration on community impact and cost savings, City officials decided to return to the procession model this year by bringing the parade to the residents.
“I haven’t been able to make it down to a parade in nearly 20 years,” said one resident at Sunnymere Nursing Home who watched the 2020 Fourth of July Procession, and whose quote was posted on the Aurora Facebook page announcing the change. “It felt good to see all of the vehicles and to celebrate the Fourth of July right here in front of my home with my friends and family.”
The procession will begin at Phillips Park on Aurora’s eastside, traveling past Sunnymere Nursing Home, through nearby neighbors before going through the heart of downtown. It will continue throughout the westside of Aurora and travel back east on Indian Trail to Aurora’s far east side, where it will pass several neighborhoods and schools, before heading south on Eola Road and concluding at Aurora Fire Station #12, at Eola Road and Hafenrichter.
Nursing homes, schools, and parks are key locations along the route, providing an opportunity to reach more Aurorans, including those who may not be mobile, closer to their homes.
The procession route will allow families to watch from their neighborhoods or in larger spaces in parking lots, parks, and other green areas. Along the route, there will be designated ‘candy zones’ where the procession will slow down so that candy can be distributed to spectators.
The full route will be posted this weekend, along with estimated times the procession will reach key locations at www.aurora-il.org/FourthofJuly and across the City’s social media platforms.
Previously announced fireworks displays at RiverEdge Park, and McCullough Park will continue as planned.