Independence Eve Celebration

June 26, 2009 The Independence Eve celebration will take place on Friday, July 3 at Taste of Chicago. Once again, the soundtrack for the pyrotechnic experience will be aired by 101.9 THE MIX and broadcast live on WGN-TV Channel 9 from 8:30pm- 9:30pm.

Upon sampling the array of food selections at Taste of Chicago, festival attendees will slowly make their way to the Petrillo Music Shell for the pre-fireworks entertainment. Beginning at 7:30 p.m., the 85th Army Band will dazzle the audience with their harmonious sound.

The band will be joined by musicians from two of the other bands that also serve under the same 88th Regional Support Command: the 451st Army Band stationed in Minneapolis, MN and the 484th Army Band stationed in Milwaukee, WI. The combined assets of all three bands will consist of 50+ musicians.

In addition to the band, the concert will also feature a vocal quartet consisting of two guest vocalists: Dr. Cherilee Wadsworth Walker, Teaching Chair for Performing Arts at Illinois Central College in East Peoria, IL; Mr. Kirk Moser, Choir Director at Peoria Christian School in Peoria, IL; and two of the 85th Army Band members: Sergeant Michael Griffin, and Specialist Tina Schultz.

Following the conclusion of the 85th Army Band's performance, spectators will direct their attention to the award-winning fireworks display crafted by Melrose Pyrotechnics, who will represent the U.S. in the 2009 world-renown fireworks competition on August 1st in Quebec. The extravagant demonstration will last for 20 minutes as 101.9 THE MIX broadcasts their soundtrack to compliment the show in the background. The view of the show is best throughout Grant Park, and museum campus to the south, as each explosion of color in the sky, along with the musical accompaniment, builds up to the grand finale. Note: Fireworks fans staking their plot of land at the festival will not be allowed onto Taste grounds until 10:45a.m. on July 3.

This year, the annual Taste of Chicago takes place June 26 through July 5. Admission is free and food tickets are $8 for a strip of 12 tickets. The event opens everyday at 11a.m. and ticket sales end at 8:30p.m. The festival will close at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, July 5. Visitors are encouraged to take public transportation to Taste of Chicago. For more information please call the Mayor's Office of Special Events hotline at (312) 744-3370 or visit the web at

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