Navy Pier Garages Fill Hours Before July 5 Fireworks Show

Saturday's fireworks show is set for 10:15 p.m. at Navy Pier

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Crowds packed Navy Pier for Friday’s 4th of July Fireworks show. So many people showed up, that police had to turn some of them away. NBC 5’s Emily Florez was there, and spoke to folks who had to quickly come up with a “Plan B.” (Published Saturday, Jul 5, 2014)

    Navy Pier announced just before 2 p.m. Saturday that all on-site parking garages were filled to capacity.

    The announcement came more than five hours before the venue was set to hold its second holiday fireworks show, which was scheduled to light up the sky at 10:15 p.m.

    Thousands Head to Navy Pier for 4th of July Fireworks

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    Navy Pier is filling up as folks make their way there to celebrate the 4th of July. Cars are already being turned away because garages are full, and officials say they may have to turn away people too. NBC’s Anthony Ponce reports. (Published Friday, Jul 4, 2014)

    The pier's parking garages filled to capacity just before 2:30 p.m. Friday.

    Partner parking garages-- including the Grand Plaza Self Park at 540 N. State St., the Ogden Plaza Self Park at 300 E. North Water St., and the Millennium Lakeside Garage at 5 S. Columbus Ave.--are available at a discount rate of $15 for 12 hours, but still expected to be crowded.

    Inside Look at Navy Pier's Fireworks Cruise

    [CHI] Inside Look at Navy Pier's Fireworks Cruise
    Alicia Roman has the inside look at one of Navy Pier's most popular attractions over the Fourth of July holiday weekend-- the Fireworks Cruise. The Navy Pier Fireworks Cruise is scheduled to take off Friday at 8:45 p.m. and Saturday at 9:15 p.m. For more details click here. (Published Friday, Jul 4, 2014)

    Visitors were being encouraged to take public transportation as well. The pier closes at midnight but trolleys will offer transportation to parking garages up to 1 a.m.

    Tens of thousands of visitors gathered at Navy Pier Friday, many dressed in patriotic attire, hoping to make it into the venue for the annual fireworks show.

    Gates closed around 7 p.m. as the venue reached capacity. No additional visitors were being allowed inside, officials said.

    The pier was expecting roughly 125,000 people to watch the holiday fireworks, more than double the average summer weekend crowds, and issued a special crowd advisory for those planning to visit Friday or Saturday.

    "We anticipate that at some times on both days, to ensure the safety and comfort of all guests, Navy Pier will reach capacity and the gates will close," their website read.

    Chicago Police had to turn away people last year after Navy Pier reached capacity, and pier personnel said it wasn't a matter of if it reached capacity again this year, but when.

    "Last year, first the garages filled up and then at a certain point we reached capacity," said spokesman Nick Shields. "We expect the same thing to happen this year."