Community Events

4th of July in Northbrook

4th of July Porch Parade4th of July

Thank you to everyone who participated in Northbrook’s 4th of July Porch Parade and made this Independence Day one to remember! The winning displays are as follows:

Overall Best

  • 2647 Maple Avenue
  • 1125 Walnut Lane

Most Patriotic

  • 2323 Walters Avenue
  • 1346 Shermer Road

Most Original

  • 2201 Center Avenue
  • 2208 Crabtree Lane

Most Likely to Make You Smile

  • 2703 Crabtree Lane
  • 1762 Birch Road


Porch Parade Details

As an alternative to the traditional 4th of July parade, Northbrook residents are invited to create their own "floats" by decorating their porch, house, front yard, or front window! Follow the interactive parade route map to see the locations of your choice, drive safely, and enjoy! Download a printable map here

Displays will be up throughout the day, but community members are encouraged to travel the parade route from 2-4pm - when they’ll find special giveaways! Stop by the Village Hall parking lot along the way, where volunteers will be passing out coupons to local businesses, reusable bags, mini flags and 3D glasses, and "Northbrook Strong" bumper stickers and window signs, while supplies last.

1st and 2nd place winners in four categories will be selected by ’celebrity judges’. The four categories are: overall best, most patriotic, most original, and most likely to make you smile. Winners will receive gift cards to local restaurants.

Decoration Rules & Regulations

  • Displays must be fully decorated by 10am on Saturday, July 4.
  • Display MUST BE appropriate for a family audience.
  • Displays are not a place for commercial marketing. Businesses are welcomed and encouraged to participate with a focus on the mission of bringing community together while staying home.
  • The Village of Northbrook reserves the right to exclude any displays that do not meet our guidelines or that feature content not aligned with our mission.
  • Registrations are limited to one per household, per location.
  • Registration for the “Porch Parade” and/or tagging with related photos or videos on social media, grants the Village of Northbrook permission to use your images, media and footage on any platform.

Porch Parade Judges

Get to know our five Northbrook ’celebrity judges!’ Each judge was asked (1) What do you love about the 4th of July? (2) What are you looking for in a ‘Porch Parade winner’? and (3) What’s on your ideal BBQ plate? 

Roger Adkins, Northbrook Chief of Police

  1. The 4th of July gives us the opportunity to gather as a community as well as with family and friends to celebrate America’s independence and participate in the events of the day.
  2. A Porch Parade winner will let their creativity and originality shine brightly by presenting a unified theme of what the 4th of July means to them.
  3. The ideal BBQ plate will have ribs, chicken, corn on the cob, and potato salad!

Kathy Fielding, CEO of North Suburban YMCA

  1. I love the parades, spending time with family and friends, and of course fireworks!
  2. Creativity and fun and celebrating summer and freedom!
  3. I love a good BBQ – I love a good cheeseburger, my mom’s potato salad, corn on the cob, and watermelon! For dessert, éclair cake or ice cream sundaes!

Kate Hall, Executive Director of the Northbrook Public Library

  1. I love being out in the community on a day that celebrates our independence. Normally, on the 4th of July, I would be running the Rotary Pancake Breakfast in Village Green before running home to shower and line up for the 4th of July Parade with the Library. And while I don’t get to do that this year, I am thrilled that I will still get to celebrate the 4th in a fun way.
  2. I’m looking for something that will make me smile and chase away some of the sadness we will all be feeling on the 4th when we can’t be celebrating as we usually do.  
  3. A cheeseburger, pickle, and some tangy coleslaw paired with a glass of wine sounds just about perfect. And then some cherries for dessert.

Neil Steinberg, Chicago Sun-Times Columnist & Northbrook Resident

  1. I love the 4th of July because it is a celebration both of our freedoms and of the struggle required to win and maintain those freedoms.
  2. I’m looking for a display that is visually dramatic, creative, and of course patriotic.
  3. Chicken, beans, cole slaw, ribs, corn bread.

Isabelle West, Glenbrook North’s 2020 ’Outstanding Girl’

  1. I love the community aspect of the 4th of July and how everyone comes together to have fun and celebrate this occasion.
  2. I am looking for passion, effort, uniqueness, and creativity. I would love to see a porch that celebrates the essence of the 4th of July and the people who created the porch decorations.
  3. My ideal BBQ plate is a cheeseburger, grilled corn, a watermelon slice, and a nice fresh salad.

Update on 4th of July Events - Fireworks Rescheduled to September 5

After much deliberation and the consideration of safety first, the Village of Northbrook and the Northbrook Park District have canceled most of the traditional Independence Day activities due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The annual Mile-long Parade, the Bike Parade, and the Police and Fire Department softball game have been canceled. The Rotary Club of Northbrook canceled the Pancake Breakfast and plans to reschedule the Rubber Ducky Race.

Fireworks Display 

The fireworks display has been rescheduled for Saturday, September 5 at dusk. Safe Viewing Sites: Techny Prairie Park and Fields, Northbrook Jr. High School & the Ed Rudolph Velodrome

Liberty Loop Virtual 5K Run/Walk

The Liberty Loop is going virtual this year! To participate, simply walk, jog, or run the distance of 3.1 miles at home, around the neighborhood, in a park, or on your treadmill anytime on July 4. Snap a photo of yourself and your tracker, pedometer, or treadmill console with your finishing time. Images must be uploaded at nbparks.org/liberty-loop by 11:59pm on July 4. The event is open to participants ages 6 and older. Cost is $10 per person. Register at nbparks.org/online-registration. Learn more about the Liberty Loop here.

Host a Safe Flamingo Friday Event in 2020!

FlowersFlamingo Opens in new window
This year the Community Relations Commission encourages residents to follow the instructions on how to host a safe Flamingo Friday event . Also, new this year, consider decorating your new feathered friend for Flamingos on Parade.

Flamingos on Parade

Decorated  flamingos are on display and featured on this Flamingos on Parade map for you to enjoy either virtually, or take a walk, ride, or drive to see them live! 

About Flamingo Fridays and How to Host a Safe Event

When neighbors get to know one another, an improved sense of support, understanding, well-being, and safety are the result. Flamingo Fridays offer neighbors a casual opportunity to get together during the summer.

Every Friday around 6 p.m. from Memorial Day through Labor Day a neighborhood gathering is held in someone’s driveway. The host provides the driveway – everyone else brings their lawn chairs, beverages, and snacks, as desired. Depending on the group, gatherings can last 30 minutes or several hours. Despite its name, Flamingo Fridays do not have to take place on Fridays. Each neighborhood can determine what time/date is most convenient. The neighborhood’s pink lawn flamingo travels from host to host. Display the flamingo early - Monday or Tuesday – to get the word out.

Gatherings should strictly adhere to State of Illinois guidelines for physical distancing and local regulations pertaining to gathering size. Host a safe event!

Look for an event around the neighborhood or on social media using #nbkflamingofriday!

Northbrook Plein Air Photography Festival – Ended June 21

PHOTO plein Air Poster

This year, due to the cancellation of the Plein Air Painting Festival, the Northbrook Arts Commission is hosting a “Plein Air” Photography Festival for Northbrook residents only with over 100 prizes to Northbrook restaurants.

Normally, Plein Air (French for “in the open air”) refers to a style of painting where the artist paints what is before them. In the spirit of Plein Air painting, the Arts Commission is hosting an event with photography (camera or smartphone is fine) that allows virtually any Northbrook resident to participate!

The Festival, which takes place from Monday, June 1 to Sunday, June 21, will include challenges that will encourage you to celebrate life in our community, document this moment in history, and discover beauty that you might otherwise pass right by. Photos must be taken within the challenge time frame. 

Photo assignments will be issued twice per week on Sundays at 5pm and Thursdays at 5pm. Contestants will submit their digital photos online by the deadline listed. Judges designated by the Northbrook Arts Commission will evaluate the entries for each daily challenge. Prizes will be awarded based on how well an entry meets the daily artistic assignment.

Winning photos will be announced on the Village of Northbrook Facebook page: facebook.com/northbrookillinois
Please be patient, our judges are still processing photos and prizes!

Click here to see Round One Winners

Click here to see Round Two Winners

Click here to see Round Three Winners

Click here to see Round Four Winners

Click here to see Round Five Winners

Click here to see Round Six Winners

Memorial Day - May 25, 2020

Please join us in observing Memorial Day to honor those who gave their lives for our country. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the Stay-At-Home Order in place, the traditional Memorial Day Parade and ceremony was canceled.

Virtual Memorial Day Ceremony

In lieu of an in-person service, a virtual ceremony was streamed at 10:30am on Memorial Day. The ceremony features American Legion Post 791 Commander Tom Mahoney, Retired Air Force Brigadier General Thomas Kittler, Village President Sandy Frum, and a special ’Post Everlasting’ ceremony to honor recently deceased members of the American Legion Post 791. 

National Night Out - Canceled

Join Northbrook Police and the Northbrook Park District on the first Tuesday in August for an evening of fun, food, music, games, and prizes. National Night Out is designed to promote the partnership between the police and the community and to share information about crime prevention and public safety. The event is held at Meadowhill Aquatic Center from 6 to 9 p.m.

Check back for details on the 2021 event!

Plein Air Painting Festival

The Northbrook Arts Commission, in partnership with the Park District, hosts the annual Plein Air Painting Festival. Held in the fall, the event features dozens of artists painting Northbrook landscapes throughout the Village. The event features live music, painting demonstrations, and a chance to purchase original art.

Check back for details on the 2021 event!

Fire Department Open House

Kids can climb in fire trucks, use a fire hose, meet Sparky the Fire Dog, view demonstrations, tour Fire Station 12, and dress in firefighter gear at the annual Fire Department Open House. The event takes place during October’s Fire Prevention Week. 

Check back for details on the 2020 event!

Halloween & Trick-or-Treat

Trick-or-Treat hours are 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. on Halloween, October 31, rain or shine. To welcome Trick-or-Treaters, switch on your porch lights or any exterior lights.

Safety tips for Trick-or-Treating:

  • Walk in groups or with an adult and stay on the sidewalks
  • Fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags to help drivers see you
  • Bring a flashlight when heading out after dusk
  • Examine all treats before eating them and eat only factory-wrapped treats
  • Wear well-fitting costumes and comfortable shoes to avoid blocked vision, trips, and falls

Please welcome Trick-or-Treaters carrying official United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) collection boxes. Halloween is National UNICEF Day and many children share the holiday by Trick-or-Treating for the UNICEF.

Celebration of Cultures

Each year, the Village’s Community Relations Commission (CRC), in partnership with the North Suburban YMCA, hosts a Celebration of Cultures featuring many of the cultures represented in the North Shore.

Check back for details on the 2020 event!

Earth & Arbor Day

Since 1989, the Village and Park District have hosted an annual Earth & Arbor Day Celebration in April. The celebration includes recycling opportunities, a sustainable vendor exhibition, and volunteer opportunities. 

Check back for details on the 2021 event!