Ponds packed for chamber event

Patrick and Emma McCormick were two of the many kids who had their faces painted by ECDC during the Light Up the Night event held by the Evanston Chamber of Commerce. (HERALD PHOTO/Kayne Pyatt)

EVANSTON — Evanston Chamber of Commerce Director Tammy Halliday said the chamber raised more than $2,600 from the Light up the Night Water Lantern Festival on Saturday, Aug. 24, at the Bear Ponds.

“It was a very magical night; calm and peaceful,” Halliday said.

Halliday said the chamber had a complete sell-out of 300 lanterns and it was estimated 700 to 1,000 people attended. There were four food vendors catering to the crowd, DJ’s Rand and Mary Walberg played a variety of music throughout the night, Suds Brothers Brewery kept customers happy and ECDC kept children entertained with face painting, sidewalk chalk, hula hoops and blowing bubbles.

As people arrived and picked up their lanterns, they went to tables under the pavilion set up with paper and markers to decorate their lanterns. Adults and children alike appeared to enjoy putting their own special touches on their lanterns. 

At approximately 8:30 p.m., Halliday announced that lanterns could be lit and placed carefully in the pond water. Lights from the lanterns, held by people lining the edge of the ponds next to the pavilion, filled the night sky and reflected in the water. As lanterns were released into the pond, a peaceful calm fell over the crowd watching.

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