CHICAGO (CBS)–Navy Pier has been Chicago’s go-to destination for New Year’s Eve fireworks for many years, but the Chicago River will rival Navy Pier’s fireworks show this year with a new display spanning nearly a mile-long stretch of the riverfront.
The new fireworks show for NYE 2018 will spread across five different launch locations along the Chicago River, from Lake Shore Drive west to Wolf Point.
Navy Pier’s show will still go on separately, starting at midnight, over Lake Michigan.
The Chicago River’s new fireworks show is being planned by Arena Partners, a River North-based event planning company that produced Chi-Town Rising in 2015 and 2016—a city-wide NYE party.
Spectators can gather along the river and watch the fireworks free of charge. The show will be synced to a soundtrack that will play in the hotels and restaurants that are affiliated with the show.
Whether you’re heading to Navy Pier for the traditional midnight fireworks show or decide to check out the riverfront’s new display (which also starts at midnight), here are a few spots to watch the fireworks on New Year’s Eve.
Chicago River: The fireworks will be launched from the Franklin Street bridge and the bridges at Clark Street and Wabash Avenue. The two other launch sites are the Hyatt Regency Chicago and the Sheraton Grand Chicago.
Lake Michigan: Navy Pier, 600 E. Grand Ave., usually fills to capacity on New Year’s Eve, so it’s not a bad idea to arrive early for the show, which can be taken in on the pier’s heated ferris wheel, a lakefront cruise or a variety of NYE parties being hosted on the pier.