True confessions: WE LOVE PARADES.
We love parades so much, we decided to write an article about our favorite parades in Champaign-Urbana. We do this with the caveat that EVERY PARADE IS A GREAT PARADE.
Parades in the Champaign-Urbana area start around St. Patrick’s Day and go through Christmas, with high parade season taking place between June through September, and then a dip up until the Christmas parades start up again in November.
This article will focus on summer parades, in other words, parades between Memorial Day and Labor Day. We will do another article about fall parades and winter-holiday parades later this year.
Here’s a list of three of our favorites, listed in chronological order. We will even add in a few of our readers’ favorites as well, so let us know – email us at email@example.com, or message us on the social media channel of your choice. Below is a listing of all summer parades on our calendar (and we keep adding more, so check in again.)
Tolono Fun Days Parade
TIME OF YEAR: end of June (typically the weekend before the Fourth of July)
WHERE: Tolono (about 15 minutes south of Champaign, if you’re not familiar. Take Route 45 South.)
WHY YOU SHOULD GO: Tolono Fun Days parade is the first of the Fourth of July parades. We love it because it always involves a lot of kids on floats, tons of fire trucks, and loads of candy. It’s authentic to its community, and that’s always the hallmark of a great parade!
Seymour 4th of July Parade
TIME OF YEAR: 4th of July morning
WHERE: Seymour (about 10 minutes south of Mahomet. Take I-72 west towards Monticello and get off at the Mahomet exit and head south, not north towards Mahomet.)
WHY YOU SHOULD GO: If you’re looking for a nostalgic small-town 4th of July parade near Champaign-Urbana the morning of the 4th of July, this short drive from C-U is a winning option. Tons of tractors and fire engines in this parade, along with local marching bands and more.
Labor Day Parade (aka The Candy Parade)
TIME OF YEAR: Labor Day. No really, this is actually ON Labor Day. Typically in the morning.
WHY YOU SHOULD GO: This is called the Candy Parade for a reason: because your child will get TONS of candy. Typically this parade gets really hot weather, so much so that people enjoy the floats with the kid supersoakers.