Security tight as thousands attend Mag Mile Lights Festival in Chicago

CHICAGO (Fox 32 News) - The Magnificent Mile Lights Festival Saturday wrapped up a two day gathering of families in Chicago.

In its 26th year, the festival is a chance for families to come from inside and outside Chicago to see a display of more than a million lights downtown.

The last of the security checks were put into place early Saturday afternoon just before the festival got underway. That gave way to a fantastic show of lights hours later.

But it was the work of Office of Emergency Management and Communications personnel, hours earlier, working to execute a security plan that had been in place for about a year,

“There's a lot of preparation and different city agencies that are involved,” said Rich Guidice, first deputy at OEMC.

Along Michigan Ave., a visible presence of Chicago Police officers were seen as salt truck barricades were readied to be placed along the parade route.

During the parade, mounted police units were ready to respond to calls at a moment’s notice.

The parade, featuring an appearance from Mickey and Minnie mouse, drew close to a million people, Guidice said, and the security precautions taken were on the mind of Terrance Perkins, who traveled from Willowbrook with his young son AJ.

“I'm not afraid to go places. If I want to go somewhere with my son or with my family, why not?” Perkins said.

Guidice said there was no credible threat to Chicago Saturday afternoon, allowing all in attendance to begin their holiday on a high note.