Milan Independence Day Events Expected To Be Bigger Than Ever

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On the 3rd and 4th of July, fireworks will light up the sky over most of the QCA. However, one show may attract more people this year than ever before.

As of 5pm on July 3rd, 2014, Camden Park in Milan, Illinois was already filling up with people holding blankets, chairs, and coolers. Organizers say they expect a bigger turnout this year since Red, White, and Boom! in Rock Island/Davenport got cancelled due to flooding.

Because of that, some people were staking out spots as early as 7am on Thursday.

"We think this is the best spot because the fireworks are right above our heads," says Beth Moore, who lives in Davenport and spoke to News 8 right after cooking breakfast on the grill for her family. "We have a good time. A lot of good food and a lot of good company."

It's not just spectators. Vendors are also preparing for a crowded event.

We're getting ready to take off and go get some more supplies... because of the weather and also because I think there's going to be more people here than I think we anticipated," says Toni Darr from East Moline, who runs a lemonade shake-up stand.

Milan Mayor Duane Dawson says they usually have between 10,000 and 15,000 people in Camden Park on the 3rd of July. He says they expect to reach or beat that number tonight.

"This will be packed tonight," he says. "The roadways will be full and we're inviting everybody from the Quad Cities to come out."

Mayor Dawson will also be part of the pre-show events. He is going to be using an air gun to launch t-shirts at spectators. The t-shirts promote the village's upcoming 2nd Annual Fireworks Fun(d) Run on October 4th, 2014 at Camden Park. Proceeds from the run go directly to the Fireworks Fund.

"This is one of our prime events for the year," he says. "It's probably the most fun event we have all year. We've been doing this for 30 or 40 years - at least. Maybe longer."

If the Milan Fireworks Show is not enough, click here for a full list of area events taking place over the 4th of July Weekend.