Navy Pier Begins a Phased Reopening April 30 With Fireworks, Rides and More

Boat cruises, dining and cocktails, Ferris wheel rides and fireworks will begin their long-awaited return this month to Chicago’s iconic Navy Pier.

With stringent Covid-19 sanitation practices and safety protocols in place — from the garages to the shops, restaurants and the new 223-room Sable Hotel — guests should feel secure their visits will be safe, said Navy Pier officials.

“We are anxious to reopen our spaces and safely welcome guests back to the Pier,” said Navy Pier President and CEO Marilynn Gardner. “We recognize the critical role Navy Pier, as a key economic driver and cultural anchor for the city and state, plays in leading our community out of the devastation from the pandemic.”

The pier will officially reopen April 30, and a 10-minute fireworks show May 1 will highlight the opening weekend. The fireworks will continue every Saturday in May at 9 p.m. until Memorial Day weekend. The first fireworks presentation will be dedicated to health care professionals and frontline workers in honor of their hard work, sacrifice, and dedication to helping our community navigate the pandemic.

Courtesy of Navy Pier

The initial phase of the reopening will include Billy Goat Tavern, Giordano’s, Harry Caray’s Tavern, Margaritaville, Odyssey, Offshore Rooftop and Bar, Shoreline Sightseeing and Seadog.

Sable at Navy Pier, a Hilton-operated hotel, and its attached Latin-inspired restaurant Lirica, which opened in March, will continue to take on new guests. 

Sable Hotel Guest Suite. Photo by Mike Schwartz. Courtesy of Sable Hotel.

Select rides and attractions at Pier Park will be open for riders including the iconic Centennial Wheel, Pepsi Wave Swinger and Carousel. In the coming weeks, new rides will be open, officials said.

Indoor shops, spaces and more food options will begin opening for business throughout May.

Safety measures will include limiting the number of riders on park attractions, the use of electrostatic anti-microbial spray treatments throughout the park and use of face masks at all times. 

Visitors and employees are required to maintain 6-foot distance between unrelated parties and to regularly wash hands. Visitors and employees also are encouraged to use hand sanitizer available from dispensers throughout the pier. 

Visitors also will notice the presence of social distancing ambassadors, who will mingle among crowds to “cordially” remind visitors to maintain the proper social distancing. 

Pier hours will be 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Parking garages are open and currently cost a flat fee of $29 though Memorial Day weekend.  


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Amanda Marrazzo lives in the far northwest Chicago suburb of Algonquin. She has been a news reporter for 25 years, including 17 years writing for the Chicago Tribune. She is married with two adult daughters and two dogs.