Registration is now open for Highland Park’s 2023 Fourth of July festivities.
The slate of events, which The Record reported in April, run from 10 a.m through the evening, and as a security measure, three of the four major activities require free-admission tickets to attend.
This year, Fourth of July in Highland Park marks one year since a mass shooting claimed the lives of seven individuals and injured dozens of others. City officials have collaborated with residents, victims’ families, and state and national authorities in developing a day of events to honor the victims and celebrate the community.
The day includes:
• at 10 a.m., a remembrance ceremony at City Hall, 1707 St. Johns Ave.,
• at 11 a.m. a community walk along the parade route and starting at St. Johns and Elm Place,
• from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. a community picnic, in conjunction with the Park District of Highland Park, at Sunset Woods, 1801 Sunset Road (tickets not required but recommended),
• 5 p.m.-10 p.m. Concert (Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band) and drone show at Wolters Field, 1080 Park Ave. W.
“What that means is that there are a number of different initiatives planned that allow the public to be able to opt in to whatever makes them comfortable,” City Manager Ghida Neukirch said during a City Council meeting on May 22.
To sign up for the events, go to Highland Park’s Fourth of July ticket webpage, where you can also view more details of the events. Separate tickets must be secured for the morning (ceremony, community walk) and the evening (concert, drone show) events.
Attendees can also purchase commemorative “We Are Highland Park” T-shirts for $10, and all proceeds benefit the Highland Park Community Foundation.
The events will feature elevated security, including helicopter surveillance, metal detectors and bag checks.
In its Fourth of July planning, the City received guidance from the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office for Victims of Crimes, Neukirch said. She added that the city is grateful for its colleagues at the FBI, Secret Service, Illinois State Police and local law enforcement agencies for the advice and assistance in planning what officials are calling a “trauma-informed approach” for this year’s events.
For more details on the Fourth of July events, visit the City’s webpage dedicated to the Fourth of July 2023.
During the May 22 meeting, Mayor Nancy Rotering thanked all involved for the hard work that is going into planning.
“This type of a day requires an unbelievable attention to detail and I know that you have been working on it nonstop and we deeply appreciate the time and the thought that’s been put into it,” she said.
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Martin Carlino is a co-founder and the senior editor who assigns and edits The Record stories, while also bylining articles every week. Martin is an experienced and award-winning education reporter who was the editor of The Northbrook Tower.