Insider Info About The Galena Halloween Festival and Parade

I reached out to leaders in the Galena community to get their advise on how to get the most out of the Galena Halloween Festival and Parade and here’s what the “Insiders” told me.  See our sister post on the weekend’s events.  We’ll update this page as more help comes to us.
“Finish out October with a bang! The Galena Halloween Parade wows thousands of visitor each year with amazing floats and festivities. Unlike any parade you’ve seen, Galena lights up Main Street with large bursts of fire. You don’t want to miss this event!” – VisitGalena

GALENA HALLOWEEN PARADE PARKING

With 10,000 – 15,000 people attending, where is the best place to park?
Galena Welcome Center:  VISITGALENA.ORG
“To accommodate the high volume of parade goers, there will be four shuttle buses operating between 4:30 pm and 9:00 pm, excluding parade times between 6:30 and 8:30pm. (Be prepared: even at 4 PM the line for the shuttle can be quite long.) Shuttle parking and pickup will be at the Walmart and Galena High School Parking Lots. Shuttle bus drop off will be in the parking lot next to Galena Cellars Tasting Room on the South end of Main Street. Cost is $1 per person (roundtrip). Children 6 and under ride free.”
“Another option for those coming from the Galena Territory is to drive in on Stagecoach Trail, park at Recreation Park on the edge of town, and walk to Main Street from there (use a stroller for the young ones). Might be an easier exit from there also.”
Betsy Kaage, Social Media Specialist Galena/Jo Daviess County Convention & Visitors Bureau:
“The Depot Parking lot and cross the bridge or Recreation Park (with a bit of a walk)…”
Colin Sanderson, Director of Sales and Marketing, Eagle Ridge:
“We will be offering transportation from the Inn to the bridge I believe and I think it will be $10 per person round trip.”  PLEASE CHECK WITH EAGLE RIDGE TO CONFIRM THIS TRANSPORTATION OPTION.
Lori Swalley, A to B Cab Company (formerly Galena Cab)
“If you’re going to use private transportation to get from your house to and from the parade, my advise is to make your reservations in advance.  At least a week out.”
Contact: Lori Swalley

RESERVE A SEAT FOR THE PARADE

QUESTION: When should we try to “reserve” a seat for the parade?  THIS QUESTION IS A BIT OF A STICKY WICKET SO FOLLOW THIS ADVISE AT YOUR OWN PERIL!  Frankly, we’re going to stake a claim as early as possible.  Will the seats be there upon our return?  Who knows… but we’re gonna give it a shot.  I’m awaiting a response from the Galena Police to get a final answer… when I do, I’ll post it.
Galena Chamber:
At 5:00pm on October 31, parking will not be allowed on the east or west side of Main Street from the Flood Gates to Franklin Street. Barricades will be put in place Saturday morning. For safety reasons, please do not attempt to move the barricades. To accommodate persons with disabilities, the Chamber and City of Galena are designating twelve (12) available parking spaces along Main Street (between Green and Washington Streets) during the Halloween Parade with the use of a special permit. Those who qualify and are interested should contact City Hall to register for the parking permit. All requests for permits should be made by October 23. If more than 12 applicants are received, a lottery will be conducted the week before the parade to determine those who receive the 12 permits/parking spaces.
At 5:15 pm, Water Street will be closed to allow for parade line-up from the Flood Gates to Franklin Street.
Betsy Kaage, Social Media Specialist Galena/Jo Daviess County Convention & Visitors Bureau:
“4 pm is a good time to scope out your spot with kids. Some of the group can save the spot while others walk around or get a bite to eat.”
Colin Sanderson, Director of Sales and Marketing, Eagle Ridge:
“People start lining up or getting their seats in the afternoon. Some bring chairs others just blankets.”

BEST PLACE TO WATCH THE GALENA HALLOWEEN PARADE

QUESTION: Best place to watch the parade.
Betsy Kaage, Social Media Specialist Galena/Jo Daviess County Convention & Visitors Bureau:
“The announcer is at the intersection of Hill and Main.”
“The Parade will begin at 6:30pm on Main Street starting on Franklin Street and will run the opposite direction (south) down Main Street ending at the Flood Gates. This should allow an extra two to three blocks of standing room for spectators”
THESE ARE NOT HARD AND TRUE THINGS YOU HAVE TO DO… MERELY SUGGESTIONS.  AND… AND… THESE ARE SIMPLY PEOPLE’S OPINIONS SO DON’T BE LIKE: “I read your post and this is what you suggested I should do and it didn’t go as planned.”  Someone once said: “If you want to make God laugh… make plans.”  SO, MAKE YOUR PLANS AND PLAN ON SOMETHING THROWING A WRENCH IN TO YOUR PLAN… PLAN ON IT!
If you have other suggestions, please leave a comment.
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