Virtual Memorial Day Parades and Events for Chicago Families

Memorial Day was born after the Civil War to honor soldiers who had died. Called Decoration Day because of the way that graves were decorated to remember soldier combatants, it was officially named Memorial Day and designated as the last Monday in May in 1971.


Though it has unofficially marked the start of the summer, the remembrance day also includes parades and cemetery memorials, which are changed for the 2020 observance. Some parades have been canceled, while others have adjusted to include virtual memorials for Americans who died in service. Here are some Memorial Day events perfect for Chicago families.


Arlington Heights Memorial Day Virtual Ceremony


When: 9 a.m., May 25


Cost: Free


Watch the Memorial Day ceremony on a live stream as Arlington Heights honors its fallen soldiers. Channel 6 for WideOpenWest, channel 17 for Comcast and on the Village’s government channel on AT&T.


WOOGMS Memorial Day Parade


When: 11 a.m., May 25


Cost: Free


The Wellington-Oakdale Old Glory Marching Society’s virtual ‘parade’ will be similar to the annual event in many ways, including the Pledge of Allegiance led by neighborhood kids, the raising of the flag, with special appearances by Congressman Mike Quigley, Secretary of State Jesse White, Alderman Tom Tunney, and others, as well as a recorded past WOOGMS performance by the Jesse White Tumblers. Participants are invited to tune in and march from home, and share photos and videos of them doing so via social media.


The Kids Table: Virtual Cooking Class


When: 1 p.m. & 2:30 p.m., May 25


Cost: $15 per class


The Kids Table is excited to continue to share is love of cooking and real food during this time of physical separation. Cooking is a wonderful way to spend time together – and hey, you’ve still gotta eat. Classes will be live-streamed at the scheduled time, so that questions can be answered in real time. Visit The Kids Table website in advance for complete recipes and needed items. Today’s recipes: Build-your-own pizza.


Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address


When: 3 p.m., May 25


Cost: Free


President Abraham Lincoln interpreter George Buss is reprising his legendary role for Memorial Day. He will be performing Lincoln’s second inaugural address (1865), sad yet triumphant as the address came at the end of slavery and beginning of Reconstruction.


Summer in the City Adventure


When: 4 p.m., May 25


Cost: $10 drop-in


Kids ages 2-5 can enjoy Memorial Day learning all about the wonders of summer in this Bubbles Academy virtual class.


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