10 ways to celebrate July 4th in Chicago

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1) Freedom Fest at Navy Pier. A family-friendly rooftop event for viewing the city’s downtown fireworks show. Starts at 6:30 p.m. on July 4, fireworks expected to begin at 9:30 p.m.

2) Fireworks Boat Cruise. The Odyssey, Spirit of Chicago and Mystic Blue are all offering special Fourth of July cruises for the Navy Pier fireworks. Other options include Seadog Chicago’s Fireworks Cruise, Mercury Cruises’ 3-D Fireworks Extravaganza, Shoreline Sightseeing’s Architecture Fireworks Tour and Wendella’s Summer Fireworks Cruise.

3) Chicago History Museum’s 56th Annual Fourth of July Celebration. Fun for families – includes patriotic music, a reading of the Declaration of Independence and a parade led by the world’s tallest Uncle Sam. Saturday from 10 a.m. until 12 p.m.

4) Independence Day Salute in Millennium Park. Patriotic songs performed by the Grant Park Orchestra in the Jay Pritzker Pavilion from 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

5) Postgame Fireworks. At U.S. Cellular Field following the Sox game Friday night, which starts at 7:10 p.m. And at Wrigley Field following the Cubs game Saturday night, which begins at 6:15 p.m.

6) 4th on 53rd. Hyde Park’s Independence Day celebration begins with bike decorating at 9 a.m. on July 4, followed by a parade at 11 a.m., ending at Nichols Park where the fun continues until 3 p.m.

7) Chosen Few Old School Reunion Picnic. Thousands flock to Jackson Park for this house music festival celebrating Chicago’s very own dance genre. Thursday through Sunday.

8) Windy City Ribfest. Uptown hosts this lip-smacking event that lasts all weekend. At Lawrence & Broadway, suggested $5 donation.

9) International Festival of Life. A 3-day event celebrating various cultures through music, dance, crafts food and even soccer. At Union Park in the West Loop.

10) Second City’s Comedy Brunch. Can’t think of a better (or more American) way to enjoy the last day of your long weekend. Hosted by UP Comedy Club. Buffet-style brunch starts at 11 a.m. Sunday, followed by a 45-minute comedy show. Costs $40.

Follow @UrbanAgendaWGN on Twitter for more fun stuff going on around the city. Send us your ideas and photos – they might be featured in a future post. Now get out and enjoy Chicago!



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