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Navy Pier Invites Chicago Nonprofits to Apply for its Community Rides Program, Granting Free Access to Special Experiences at the Pier

All eligible Chicagoland 501(c)(3) organizations encouraged to apply by June 29; Recipients will be announced on July 15 in honor of Navy Pier’s 102nd anniversary.

CHICAGO – In honor of Navy Pier’s 102nd anniversary this July, Chicago’s mission-driven cultural destination is awarding 102 local nonprofit organizations the opportunity to either ride the iconic Centennial Wheel or experience the popular Fifth Third Bank Winter WonderFest for free as part of its annual Community Rides program. The Pier is accepting applications from now through Friday, June 29, and recipients will be announced on Friday, July 15 to coincide with the Pier’s anniversary.

Applicants must be Chicagoland-based 501(c)(3) nonprofits in good standing, and must serve a community primarily located in Cook, Dekalb, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Kenosha (WI), Lake, Lake (IN), and/or Will counties in order to be considered. Past recipients are welcome to reapply. Awarded nonprofits will be issued complimentary Centennial Wheel tickets or Fifth Third Bank Winter WonderFest following the announcement on July 15. Centennial Wheel tickets will be valid through May 31, 2019, while Fifth Third Bank Winter WonderFest tickets will be valid through the duration of the event (from November 30, 2018 to January 6, 2019). Interested organizations are encouraged to apply online by close of business on June 29.

Now in its third year, the annual Community Rides program has quickly become a popular program within the local nonprofit scene. Mara O’Brien, executive director of past recipient, SitStayRead, shared how the program afforded her students the rare opportunity to venture out of their school and neighborhood and allowed them to see and appreciate their city from a unique perspective while riding the Centennial Wheel. Girls in the Game’s Teen Programs Manager Elizabeth White added, “The experience provided the opportunity for girls from different backgrounds to come together as a team and have fun, while proving to our participants that they are part of a larger community and family across Chicago.”

The Community Rides program is a shining example of Navy Pier’s ongoing commitment to its mission and values, as the organization strives to establish and nurture meaningful partnerships with other nonprofits, offer unique opportunities and experiences to underserved communities, and remain an accessible place for all.

For more information, visit www.navypier.org or download the Navy Pier app on any Android or iOS device.

About Navy Pier

Located on Lake Michigan, Navy Pier is one of the top-attended nonprofit cultural destinations in the Midwest, stretching more than six city blocks and welcoming more than 9 million guests annually. Originally opened in 1916 as a shipping and recreation facility, this Chicago landmark showcases more than 50 acres of parks, restaurants, attractions, retail shops, sightseeing and dining cruise boats, exposition facilities and more. In 2018, Navy Pier continues to usher in its second century with ongoing pier-wide redevelopment efforts – including the Fifth Third Bank Family Pavilion, Peoples Energy Welcome Pavilion, 220-room hotel and more – in addition to free, year-round arts and cultural programming designed to inspire, educate and connect communities across the city and globe. For more information, visit www.navypier.org or download the free Navy Pier app for Android and iOS device users.

Navy Pier Mission Statement

Navy Pier is the People’s Pier, Chicago’s lakefront treasure, welcoming all and offering dynamic and eclectic experiences through partnerships and programs that inspire discovery and wonder.

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