Citizens Step Up To Make 2018 Freeport Fireworks Happen – Date Set For July 7th At Fairgrounds

UPDATE June 14, 2018 – From the Light the Night Freedom Fest group:

“We have exceeded our funding goal! Additional donations will be used to round out the event and any surplus will be used to fund the legal work to establish our not for profit to make sure this event continues for years to come. We will add next years event to our fundraising profile so that you can choose where your donations go. You can also add recurring monthly donations if you would like to give a few dollars per month. Thanks so much to EVERYONE who is supporting this!”

From 5-9pm we have carnival games, Inflatables, live music, dance teams, carnival food as well as local food favorites and then Fireworks at dusk.

There will be Music from 5-9 at the Fireworks and a dance club coming to perform. Two 11 year olds Mack Massingill and Carson Hartog will be playing and singing, Walter Hayward is singing, Kris Valkema will be playing and singing and The Frazer Project plays from 8-9 pm.


Freeport, Illinois — Before you shoot the messenger, let us state right from the start that we do not like this back and forth fireworks story any more than you do. You know what we’re talking about. It’s the news over the past few years of “no more fireworks in Freeport”, and then, at the last minute, the news changes to this big push to make sure the event still happens.

It’s not our fault. It’s not your fault either. It’s not the citizens of Freeport.

Because of lack of funding according to the city, our citizens have been playing a fireworks dance over the past few years. Due to the news this year, a number of local citizens fed up with the dance, have formed a group with the goal of putting an end to all the drama over fireworks for good.

First, Freeport Fireworks for 2018 ARE set to happen. A date of July 7th at the Fairgrounds has been set.

Jesse Martin & Sami Nunez with Computer Pros, Nick Jupin from City Transit Solutions, Liz Eslinger with Linens Galore & More and Michelle Magee from Logan’s have lined up a fireworks company, obtained all the permissions, have approval from the Fairgrounds board and have a scheduled date set for July 7th (a Saturday) to hold a July 4th fireworks celebration in Freeport for 2018.

For the price of $13,000 (group is trying to raise $14,000 for insurance and other costs) Freeport can have a 30 minute show of Fireworks this year from the same company that does the Stockton, Illinois Fireworks. The show this year would be without music.

As of right now The Enzor Family, Freeport Crush Softball, The Beauty Boutique, Black Diamond Music Studio, 312 Beef & Sausage, Pub 219, Deininger Floral and Mort’s Bar & Grill have all pitched in $100 each. Computer Pros in downtown Freeport has given $500. (see below for updated donors)

We know that no one likes this.

But because of the recent news regarding Freeport’s July 4th celebration, any hope of ever continuing to have this event is going to have to be put together, and run, by the people. That means if we would like to keep the tradition of Freeport fireworks alive, we have to come together.

Because of the time crunch, in order to ensure enough funding is raised for Fireworks this year, 130 citizens (or area businesses) are being asked to pitch in $100 each. Right now, any amount is being accepted.

In future years, and starting with next year, the goal will be to involve a few thousand citizens which would keep everyone’s donation amount down to a few bucks. For example, if a few thousand people gave just $5.00 next year, (or even this year) the event could run smoothly well into the future and no one has to go broke doing it.

To donate, everyone is being asked to drop off either cash or make checks payable to Logan’s. An online donation page has been created so you can donate online. The following businesses also have drop off buckets where you can stop and make your donation.

Drop off locations are:

  • Landmark Restaurant
  • Rita Way Furniture
  • Swing n Splash
  • Computer Pros
  • Logan’s
  • Gemorifics
  • Contemporary Hair Salon
  • Beauty Boutique
  • Barely Used
  • World Finance
  • Good People Automotive
  • Deininger Floral
  • K&J Tan Studio
  • Sawicki Motors
  • Dimond Brothers Insurance
  • One Main Financial
  • Fitness Nutrition Center
  • Security Finance

Additional drop off locations will be added as we get them. A Facebook page has also been created for people who would like follow the developments of this years efforts. The page is called Light the Night Freedom Fest.

If your business would like to be a drop off location, you can contact Liz Griffin Eslinger on her Facebook page here.

Here are the donations as of 12:00 p.m. June 13. A total of $8,093 has been raised.

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  • The Enzor Family – $100
  • Freeport Crush Softball – $100
  • The Beauty Boutique – $100
  • Black Diamond Music Studio – $100
  • 312 Beef & Sausage – $100
  • Pub 219 – $100
  • Deininger Floral – $100
  • Mort’s Bar & Grill – $100
  • Computer Pros- $500
  • Walker Mortuary and Cremation Services $2,000


There are others who have donated online also.

About Light The Night (LTN) Freedom Fest

Light The Night (LTN) Freedom Fest is an annual Independence Day Celebration in Freeport Illinois. This event brings community members from across Stephenson County together to enjoy and celebrate our Freedom. The 2018 event is planned to be fireworks only, but future events will include a parade, family friendly festival with food, live music and family events and then concluded with a special fireworks show. This event is completely funded via donations, so every dollar is important to the event and its collaborators.

The money collected will be responsibly spent on the event to ensure a great experience for the community and to ensure long term continuity of the event.

We encourage you to not only donate to this event, but to become a fundraiser yourself and recruit donors from your circle of friends and family. This event is for everyone, so if you have suggestions, while we may not be able to incorporate them in 2018, we will certainly review your input for future years.

**Please be aware that if enough money isn’t raised for 2018, you donations will roll to the 2019 event unless you request your money to be returned by the end of July.**



3 thoughts on “Citizens Step Up To Make 2018 Freeport Fireworks Happen – Date Set For July 7th At Fairgrounds

  • June 8, 2018 at 7:49 am

    So nice to see Freeport coming together .Freeport is where I was born and raised and I will contribute, so my Grandchildren can experience some of my wonderful past traditions. Thank you to all citizen’s.

  • June 25, 2018 at 9:05 am

    Is there a phone number to call to get more details?
    Really nice to see everyone coming together but there is a mayor of Freeport and people in charge of this city they should be the ones taking care of it not the hard working businesses and the people of Freeport

    • June 25, 2018 at 11:23 am

      You can call (815) 232-4592 and ask for Michelle.

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