Chicago, Seeing The Highest Levels Of Covid Since The Pandemic Began, Will Host ‘Largest Fireworks Display’ City Has Ever Had for New Year’s Eve


A 1.5-mile-long fireworks show will explode along the city’s lakefront and Chicago River at midnight, marking the city’s entry in 2022.

“This will be the largest fireworks display in the City’s history and one of the largest anywhere in the world,” Arena Partners CEO, John Murray, who is producing the event after a 2-year hiatus due to the COVID pandemic, said in a statement.

The show will be choreographed to a “special music soundtrack” and will be synchronized across eight separate launch sites along the Chicago River, in Lake Michigan, and near Navy Pier.

City officials say while the historic display comes at a time COVID cases are surging, they encourage residents to celebrate the holiday safely.

“I’m thrilled that we are able to welcome back our New Year’s Eve fireworks and hope to continue this tradition into the future,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot said in a statement. “Importantly, the display can be viewed outdoors where the spread of COVID-19 is less likely, so our residents and visitors should feel comfortable while masking up and social distancing or even watching safely from home. I look forward to welcoming a happy new year.”

The show will air live on NBC 5’s “A Very Chicago New Year” show and will be streamed live on the NBC Chicago app.

NBC 5 Chicago will ring in the New Year with a special show hosted by Cortney Hall and Matthew Rodrigues of “Chicago Today.” The program celebrates some of the best the city has to offer.

To help kick off 2022, several celebrities make guest appearances, including Chicago New Year’s Eve icons Janet Davies and Mark Giangreco. Reuniting Chicago’s unofficial New Year’s Eve couple leads to fun antics the pair have been known for during the past 20 years.

“We’re thrilled to bring this very Chicago ensemble together to start the New Year and provide viewers with an expanded show this year,” said Kevin Cross, president of NBC Universal Local Chicago.

It wouldn’t be New Year’s without a few fun games and reminiscing with celebrities Buddy Guy, Dan Aykroyd, Jim Belushi, Giuliana Rancic, and more. Plus, performances by rock legends Chicago and The Blues Brothers.

The show will be broadcast on Friday, Dec. 31 at 11:08 p.m. on NBC 5, streaming on and through NBC Chicago’s free apps on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, and Apple.