Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Hot times, summer in the city

I don’t know about you, but I am so over this weather.

For those of you who feel you are being consumed by the gloom of a never-ending winter, do not despair. Summer is coming. And it will be a hot one in downtown Elgin.

With the opening of Festival Park last year and a summer full of successful events like Fox Fire Fest, Fiesta Salsa, and Duckapolooza, everyone is clamoring to get those special event applications in to the city to have their event downtown.

Here is what the Downtown Neighborhood Association has in store. Be sure to check the City of Elgin website in the coming months for all the other hot happenings.

Though summer doesn’t officially begin until June, the downtown event season heats up with the Cinco de Mayo Festival, May 1-4 at the former Gail Borden Library site along the Fox River. This year’s festival promises to be a big cultural celebration boiling over with great food, music, dancing, entertainment, children’s activities, and a carnival by Windy City Amusements.

Next in the DNA’s summertime lineup is the Fourth of July Parade, which is quickly becoming one of the best parades in the ‘burbs. This year’s parade will celebrate “the red, white and Blues,” and kicks off with a chase scene that would make Jake and Elwood proud. Honest Abe will also make a special appearance, in Blues Brothers shades and top hat, of course. Parade participant applications will be available in the early spring.

The Elgin Cycling Classic will ride alongside Fox Fire Fest again this year on August 3. More than 200 cyclists come from all over the Midwest to challenge themselves on our downtown course and a chance to win more than $12,000 in cash prizes. Online registration for participants opens in the early spring.

The Downtown Elgin Car and AFV Show on September 6 was a new event last year that has great potential to draw large crowds with the variety of vintage to hybrid vehicles that will be on display. We are pairing this event with a 3-day carnival so there will be lots of fun for the whole family, even if you aren’t a car enthusiast.

The summer event season comes to a close in mid-September so you will have a little break to rest up for the DNA’s 10th Anniversary Party at the Grand Victoria Casino in early October. The event will be a black-tie (optional) affair celebrating 10 years of downtown revitalization.

We wrap up 2008 with our annual Window Wonderland event on December 6, with lots of decorated storefront windows and holiday entertainment in the theme of The Nutcracker Suite.

If your organization or business would like to participate in any of the above events as entertainment, booth exhibitors, sponsors or volunteers, please contact the Downtown Neighborhood Association at (847) 488-1456 or email me at

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