Are there fireworks in Chicago tonight? Downtown fireworks will be launched along Riverwalk, by the lake despite the COVID-19 outbreak

CHICAGO (WLS) – New Years Eve celebrations take place in Chicago. It will be a busy night by the river, where the city is preparing its biggest fireworks display ever.

The free fireworks display can be seen along the Chicago River from Wolf Point near the Franklin / Orleans Street Bridge east of Columbus Drive to Navy Pier.

Barricades are lifted and security has been spotted along the Riverwalk as many planned to attend the midnight festive display.

Chicago New Years Eve Street, Bridge, and Riverwalk closures

As of 4 p.m., the sidewalks will be closed to pedestrians on one side of each of the following bridges (pedestrians will have access to the sidewalk on the remaining side of the bridge and will be able to cross until the bridges close for the exhibition launch. between 11:30 a.m. and 11:30 p.m.): Franklin / Orléans Street Bridge (West Sidewalk), Lasalle Street Bridge (East Sidewalk), Clark Street Bridge (East Sidewalk), Dearborn Street Bridge (West Sidewalk), and State Street Bridge (east sidewalk).

At 4 p.m., the Chicago Riverwalk will close east of State Street to all pedestrian traffic. The rest of the Riverwalk west of State Street will close for public safety reasons. Viewing will not be permitted from the Chicago Riverwalk.

Starting at 11 p.m., expect the Franklin / Orleans Street, Lasalle Street, Clark Street, Dearborn Street, and State Street bridges to close to all traffic and pedestrians.

In addition, at 11:00 p.m., the Eastbound Upper, Middle and Lower Wacker Parkways will be closed to vehicular traffic from Lake Street to Stetson Avenue. Pedestrian traffic and viewing from Upper Wacker Drive will be permitted.

SEE MORE: New Year’s Eve fireworks in Chicago: Mayor Lightfoot shares safety plan and street closures for NYE

Meanwhile, some people are a little nervous as they face another year of COVID casting a shadow over their New Years parties.

“It all happened pretty much at the last minute because it’s hard to plan ahead with COVID,” Wendell Parker said.

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The latest wave of COVID has scaled back the plans of many, with some now choosing to stay home and keep their circle closed.

“We were hoping this year would be different, but it’s not,” said Merlyn Fruin. “We’re having a really low-key celebration. We’re going to have dinner out and then we’ll just be home watching the ball drop somewhere.”

SEE MORE: CTA, Metra Offering Free New Years Eve Rides

But with vaccinations and testing widely available, others continue with the party and stopped to pick up last-minute supplies from Doolins on Friday.

The local staple said it was selling almost as many New Year’s balloons as it did before the pandemic. There were concerns that the spread of omicron would force many people to cancel their orders.

“So far we haven’t had a lot of changes in our plans,” President Nicholas Doolin said. “Most people continue to do what they wanted to do and it will be safe to do so.”

Restaurants are also facing last minute changes. Offshore at Navy Pier is now adding a vaccination or testing requirement for the 350 people in attendance Friday night.

“When we started selling tickets for this event, we weren’t going to have a testing requirement or a vaccination requirement, but it shows how quickly the world can change,” said Stephen Stoll , director of Maverick Restaurants.

Another of River North’s newer restaurants is also trying to make the most of it. The Goa Bar offers cuisine that has never been seen before in Chicago, its owner said.

“A little known fact about Goa is that while the rest of India was ruled by the British, Goa was ruled by the Portuguese,” said Manish Mallick, the restaurant’s owner.

The cuisine is therefore very tasty, mixing spices from India and flavors from Portugal.

For New Years Eve, Mallick is hoping that those who want something a little more intimate, with great food and lots of flavor, will choose his final spot.

“As you can see, it’s a small space; we want to keep it that way,” Mallick said. “We don’t want to fill it to capacity. We want to keep it as safe as possible for our customers; we want them to enjoy the food, cocktails and music! “

There will always be a celebration after 9 p.m. Two different DJs will help ring in the New Year.

“The first one is Sadanu, she plays 9 to 11 years old, more on the Latin side. Then DJ Virgil plays Bollywood tunes,” Mallick said.

Free public transport on the CTA is also available on Friday evenings from 10 p.m.

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