PEORIA/ EAST PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD) — Peoria and East Peoria’s largest fourth of July fireworks display returned after two years due to covid concerns.

“It’s good to be back, we are glad to be here,” said one attendee from Bloomington, Shawn Holmes.

People lined the riverfront early Monday for a good spot to watch the Red White and BOOM show.

“Popped the tent up about 2 o’clock yesterday to save our spot and then came here around noon today,” said one attendee from Heyworth, Chris Leman.

The Red White and BOOM attracts more than 200,000 people a year. Fans traveled from all over Central Illinois to see the bright fireworks light up the sky. Fans like Chris Leman and his family from Heyworth.

“My wife and I actually came over yesterday and got a room at the Embassy Suites. I just love it because of the quality of the fireworks and the setting and everything like that,” said Leman.

It was the same story for Holmes and her family, who traveled from Bloomington.

“This is one of the best ones we’ve seen so far. We try to get here early because if we don’t then we can’t find a spot,” said Holmes.

One Peoria family said they also set up early and prepared their spots as early as 10 a.m.

“We are just making up for two years lost with COVID-19 and all,” said Holmes.

The holiday celebrations also come in the wake of a Fourth of July parade mass shooting in Highland Park, Illinois. The incident left six dead.

Red White and BOOM attendee, William Chavarría, said it is disheartening to hear about a tragedy like this, especially on a day of family and celebration.

“We hear about so many shootings, and we try to keep up. I know it’s wrong. It worries me because you don’t know who is going to show up and start shooting,” said Chavarría.