It is with great disappointment, but necessity, the Rantoul Freedom Celebration has been cancelled this year year due to the current restrictions set by the State of Illinois regarding the number of people who can gather.
While the Village and their partners in the event tried to delay a decision as long as possible in hopes new guidelines from the Illinois Department of Public Health would allow for large gatherings by Phase 4, it appears a number greater than 50 should not be expected, and that is well below the anticipated attendees for the Freedom Festival, the annual fireworks, and the Independence Day Parade.
“We held out long after most had already cancelled their events due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in hopes of devising a way to host these activities safely” said Village Administrator Scott Eisenhauer. “We looked at different scenarios, different locations, different guidelines we could implement, but ultimately decided there was no way to guarantee a festival where people could socially distance appropriately while still enjoying all of the activities which make this event so enjoyable. Eisenhauer also adds “While this is extremely unfortunate, it does not prevent us from further investigating the opportunity to hold a community-wide event later this summer, once the guidelines for safe gathering are expanded.”
The Village of Rantoul, along with their event partners, will evaluate offering a similar-type event later this calendar year if Illinois Department of Public Health guidelines under “Restore Illinois” allow for larger gatherings. They will also use this time to plan for next year’s Freedom Festival.