EAST PEORIA, Ill. — Thousands gathered this fourth of July to celebrate freedom and the birth of America at the East Peoria Riverfront.
This event brings people into East Peoria from all over the state and really benefits the city.
“It great for the city of east Peoria people come out every year, the weather seems to cooperate, some scatter showers around us but so far so good. Seeing everybody having a good time, families coming out early, bringing some picnic stuff, playing some bags, things like that, it’s good to see,” said Doug McCarty, director of tourism and special events in East Peoria.
McCarty says those who get to experience Red, White and Boom are truly in for the fireworks show of a lifetime.
“It’s one of the best shows in the country, I think it’s in the top 2 percent in the entire nation, it’s the biggest in Illinois. About 9:30 or so is when they shoot them off. People are pretty considerate, they lower their tents so people behind them can see. It seems like every year everybody’s really excited to see the fireworks.”
The event also provides opportunities for visitors to support clubs at East Peoria Community High School.
This year it was the Auto Club who sold hot dogs, pork chops, and cold beverages to customers.
“We have an auto club and a race team at the high school, we compete in the mid Illini automotive competition. The students have put together their race car, back in October, and we maintain that and take the kids to the track and race it,” said Jim Hagedorn who is a teacher at East Peoria Community High School.
The East Peoria High School Auto Club has been around for 10 years. Hagedorn says the Red, White and Boom is the clubs’ biggest fundraiser of the year.
“We do not have a budget through the high school, so we try to do some fundraisers to keep our program going and ya know it’s money for the students,” Hagedorn said.
If you’d like to donate to the club you can to to the high school’s website and contact the school on how you can get involved.