GLENVIEW — Everything is just ducky in Glenview for the Fourth of July when parade lovers get to see a giant yellow inflatable ducky.
“This is the best float ever,” said Ellen Stern, a KoenigRubloff realtor who resides in the Glen Oak Acres neighborhood near Glenview’s Lake Street and Wagner Road.
“There are about 100 people participating, not counting the dancers,” said Stern, who gushed about the large yellow rubber ducky parade float that Glen Oak Acres neighbors spent weeks talking about and building.
This is the tenth year Glen Oak Acres (550 homes) has entered a float with one goal to reinforce a theme of “Everything’s Ducky in the Acres!”
Dancers, mostly youth with chaperoning adults, performed a choreographed routine in the parade to the Pharrell Williams tune “Happy.” Live ducks were carted in colorful wagon crates.
“So many donate time, creativity, energy and support,” Stern said. “Edwina Cowell is instrumental in spearheading the effort.
“She encourages participation from everyone.
“It is truly a group effort,” said Stern, a 20-year Glenview resident.
The float had a tub and showerhead where water spouts sprinkled parade crowds. Bubbles were blown by happy adults as a duck horn honked. Everything was pretty much “ducky in the acres,” confirmed Stern, with a laugh.
Good-natured humor like this is what makes the annual Glenview Independence Day Celebration the much-loved event it is. Hometown memories are built as community members converge as participants or spectators. Folks sat in the shade while some wore wide-brimmed hats, also relying on sunblock.
The main parade stepped off at Glenview Road and Lehigh Avenue at 11:20 a.m. Younger children had high hopes of snagging free candy or tossed t-shirts and other trinkets.
“First of all, I want to thank our Fourth of July committee,” said Jason Hickman, director of recreation services at the Glenview Park District.
“We have a fantastic group of volunteers made up of local business leaders and citizens.”
The staging area just west of the downtown train station offered plenty of excitement. The Glenbrook South High School marching band was a No. 11 parade entry, assembling in full sun with instruments reflecting smiles off the sides of drums and under rims of bells.
Elected officials, a parade mainstay, included hopefuls like Bruce Rauner, a republican running for Illinois governor.
Rauner, who is challenging democratic and Illinois Governor Pat Quinn’s legacy, shook hands with many.
“Yeah, it’s great to be in Glenview, one of the most important communities in Illinois and it’s a great opportunity to celebrate the birth of our nation, it’s terrific,” Rauner said.
Parade highlights included the families served by St. David’s Nursery School in Glenview (2410 Glenview Road). Some kids who walked with this group sported festive patriotic hair coloring.
“I am a Fourth of July beautician,” said Aimee Reid of Glenview with a laugh. Reid spray-painted the hair of her daughter Audrey, 6, a Glenview Our Lady of Perpetual Help School first-grader.
Audrey, who was motivated to have her shoulder-length blonde locks turned blue and red, couldn’t help making a scrunched-up face to keep the paint out of her eyes.
“I am glad it washes out,” said Audrey’s mother, of sanctioned spray paint.
“I’m also glad it’s not in my hair!”
The day also included a bike parade, twilight show and a bang-up fireworks conclusion. The official program listed 73 parade entries. The Independence Day Celebration was presented by the Glenview Park District in cooperation with the Village of Glenview.
“It’s a great tradition here in Glenview,” Hickman said. “We look forward to it every year.”
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