(CBS) – Downtown Chicago will be a spectacular scene of fireworks, live music on multiple stages and hopefully tens of thousands of people, under plans for a New Year’s Eve celebration unveiled Thursday.
The mega event entitled “Chi-Town Rising” is considered a first-of-its-kind event for the Second City. Instead of New York’s giant glitter ball in Times Square, a star will rise at midnight along the west tower of the Hyatt Regency Chicago.
The privately financed event on both sides of the Chicago River between Michigan Avenue and Columbus Drive is sponsored by Hyatt and Corona, and supported by the city’s tourism arm, Choose Chicago, as well as the Illinois Office of Tourism.
“We are thrilled to welcome a new tradition to our city, changing the way that Chicago and the Midwest celebrates New Year’s Eve,” John Murray, Executive Producer of Chi-Town Rising, said in a news release.
Chi-Town Rising is meant to make Chicago a “destination” for New Year’s Eve and help support Mayor Emanuel’s tourism goal of welcoming 55 million visitors annually by 2020, organizers said.