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Buckingham Fountain Turned On For Season

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Buckingham Fountain was running again on Thursday. (Credit: Mike Krauser/WBBM Newsradio)

Buckingham Fountain was running again on Thursday. (Credit: Mike Krauser/WBBM Newsradio)

CHICAGO (CBS) — Buckingham Fountain roared back to life on Thursday in Grant Park.

For 86 years, the iconic fountain in Chicago’s front yard has drawn tourists and locals.

It’s been the subject or backdrop for countless photos, with 360-degree views of historic buildings or the lake in the background.

For the first time, a charity, the March of Dimes, had the honor of starting the fountain for the season.

A 7-year-old girl named Kayla Kernan, who has benefitted from the March Of Dimes, got to pull the lever.

Her mother said it was an experience Kayla will never forget.

Bob O’Neill, with the Grant Park Conservancy, said he loves the fountain and visits often, even though he’s lived in the city for 30 years.

He said the iconic fountain is inspiring to him and makes him feel like he’s on vacation.

O’Neill says about six million people visit the fountain every year, more than visit “The Bean,” but not by much.