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‘The Black Phone’ review: From haunting scares to ’70s vibe, horror



From the film’s opening shot of an open can of Coors to the timely use of vintage pop hits to backyard toy rocket launchers to convenience stores with pinball machines to two-tone raglan baseball T-shirts worn by children in brown and gold color combinations in working-class suburban homes, “The Black Phone” has such a great 1978 vibe – and yet it’s almost like we’re watching a visualization of someone from today today telling the story of that time long ago when a serial killer known as “The Grabber” snatched boys from the streets.

After all, the same year the Grabber hid behind his masks while terrorizing a North Denver neighborhood, a Michael Myers escaped from a sanitarium, donned a white mask, and started a killing spree in the city. of Haddonfield, Illinois, and we were just a few years away from a masked murderer named Jason Voorhees who was making his way through Camp Crystal Lake in New Jersey. It was a bloody golden age for masked killers across America. Yeah !

Based on a short story by Joe Hill and directed with pitch-perfect style by Scott Derrickson, who wrote the screen adaptation with his “Doctor Strange” writing partner C. Robert Cargill, “The Black Phone” is hauntingly efficient, perfectly paced, consistently chilling and wickedly distorted gem of horror. Some elements might remind you of “Halloween,” as well as “The Silence of the Lambs,” “Stranger Things,” “Room,” “Saw,” and Stephen King’s “It” (perhaps not a huge surprise, considering Joe Hill is Stephen King’s son), but “The Black Phone” carves out its own identity as one of the best cinematic nightmares of recent years. It will scare you AND haunt you, as the best entries of this genre always do.

When we meet 13-year-old Finney (Mason Thames), he’s on the pitcher’s mound throwing a pretty impressive heat, but he gives up the game-winning home run to an opponent who tells him in the handshake line after -match (“Good game, good game, good game”) that his arm is “mint”, and that’s such a perfect term from the late 1970s.

It turns out that even though Finney plays baseball, he’s not so much an alpha jock as an outcast outsider – a science nerd who’s tormented by the requisite trio of bullies, can barely make eye contact with his classmate and clings to his younger sister Gwen (Madeleine McGraw) at home, where their alcoholic and abusive father (Jeremy Davies) could blast them at any moment and take the belt out. (It doesn’t help that Gwen inherited their mother’s “gift” of seeing the future in her dreams – a condition that drove their mother to suicide.) one of Finney’s friendliest classmates – and that day comes sooner than Finney expected, and in a far more gruesome way than he could ever imagine.

For about a year now, a dark figure in a black van with “ABRACADABRA ENTERTAINMENT SUPPLIES” emblazoned on the side has come out of nowhere and snatched some teenagers, along with a few stray black balloons floating out of the van, and it’s on the only clue the cops have. (As is usually the case in horror movies, law enforcement is slow to grasp the magnitude of the situation and are usually three feet away from the killer.)

That “The Grabber”, as he is called, is played by Ethan Hawke is particularly shrewd casting, as this eminently likable actor has the rare opportunity to play pure evil – and even if Hawke’s face is fully or partially hidden behind an interchangeable mask that can be turned off to reflect senseless menace, deep sadness, or smiling malevolence, he puts such an over-the-top and unique spin on his online deliveries that he feels like HIS expressions are actually changing.


As a villain called The Grabber, Ethan Hawke puts an over-the-top spin on his online deliveries behind a mask.

When Finney is snatched from the streets by the Grabber and locked in a dungeon-like basement with a crude toilet and a dirty mattress, we can feel the hopelessness of this situation. Finney says to himself: I never leave here.

But wait. There’s an old black rotary phone on the wall, and even though it hasn’t worked in years, Finney begins to receive calls from former Grabber victims, some of whom have forgotten their names but are still trying to help him escape. (Visualizations of these murdered victims are rendered in shocking and gory fashion.) Meanwhile, clairvoyant Gwen desperately tries to find her brother while negotiating with Jesus in a way that is both hilarious and deeply touching. Everyone should have a little sister who is a force like Gwen.


Gwen (Madeleine McGraw) is determined to find her missing brother, Finney.

With the gritty cinematography and period piece production design keeping that 1970s vibe, “The Black Phone” slowly builds to its heart-pounding final act, some of which is choreographed to the instrumental classic “On the Run.” Pink Floyd’s ‘Dark Side of the Moon’, and there’s a sequence that’s an obvious and terrific homage to one of the greatest thrillers of all time and we’ll leave it at that.

Ethan Hawke is a memorable villain, but the film is carried by two young actors who deliver remarkably authentic performances: Mason Thames as the resourceful Finney and Madeleine McGraw as the incredibly rude and fiercely determined Gwen, a half-pint who might just be tougher than all the adults in this town, including this bleepin’ Grabber.

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Best travel pillow of 2022




Travel pillows need to strike a tricky balance. Not supportive enough and you’ll end up with a crick in your neck, too big and stiff you’ll, er, end up with a crick in your neck. They also need to be compact, lightweight and easy to clean — no small feat for a humble travel accessory!

To find the best travel pillow on the market, we spent weeks testing 11 of the most popular and highest-rated travel pillows on the market. We evaluated pillows of all different designs and materials on both comfort and build to determine the best travel pillow for trips via plane, bus or car. And while many of the pillows we tested had their merits, there were two clear winners.

Best travel pillow overall

The Cabeau Evolution S3 is the Goldilocks of travel pillows: We found it firm enough to support our head and neck, soft enough to fall asleep on and perfectly portable, thanks to its being made of springy memory foam that enables you to compress it to half its size.

Best splurge travel pillow

The Ostrichpillow Go Neck Pillow will give you a truly luxurious travel experience if you’re a frequent traveler who’s willing to spend a bit more. Unlike traditional U-shaped travel neck pillows, it has full 360-degree memory foam neck support so your head and neck won’t bounce around, and still compresses down to 60% of its expanded size for easy transport.

The Evolution S3's adjustable front clasp let us slightly tighten or loosen the neck opening to our liking.

The Cabeau Evolution S3 updates the standard U-shaped travel pillow design with raised sides that gently cradled our head and neck when we used it. The S3’s flat back also rested relatively flush against our seat, preventing our head from uncomfortably jutting forward, while an adjustable front clasp let us slightly tighten or loosen the neck opening to our liking, which makes it possible to tailor the pillow to travelers of different sizes.

We found that the S3 works best when leaning your head to the side or as a cushion against a solid surface, but it still offered decent chin support. Its two built-in straps attached to nearly any seatback we tested on, keeping the pillow in place and helping to lessen whiplash during sudden stops or turbulence.

The S3’s memory foam manages to be soft, springy and supportive all at once; it’s firm enough that it kept our head from slouching too far to the side but not so firm that it dug into our cheeks and ears (unlike another popular memory foam model we tested). Of course, memory foam, however cushy, is never going to be the lightest or most breathable material around. And while we didn’t overheat while using the Cabeau, it also wasn’t the coolest pillow we tested.

The S3's cover (right) is made from a more breathable, quick-dry fabric that felt cooler to the touch than Cabeau's original Evolution pillow (left).

That said, the S3’s cover is a definite upgrade from Cabeau’s original Evolution pillow. Whereas that older model’s cover is made entirely from velour, the S3’s is made from a more breathable, quick-dry fabric that did indeed feel cooler to the touch. The S3’s cover is also fully removable and machine-washable — a must when it comes to something that touches highly trafficked surfaces like airplane seats. Actually getting that cover on and off the S3’s memory foam insert proved trickier than we’d have liked, but it held up perfectly well in a standard wash cycle.

The comfiest travel pillow in the world is useless if it’s too big to travel with, which is why one of the best things about the Evolution S3 is the fact that it compresses down to half its size. All you have to do is roll the pillow up like a cinnamon bun and then stuff it inside the included carrying case. Doing so took a bit of elbow grease and was easiest on a solid surface, but we think that’s a fair price to pay given how much space it ends up saving.

The S3’s carrying case, in turn, is another major upgrade from the original Evolution pillow and was far and away our favorite case of the bunch. It clips directly to your luggage and is made from ripstop fabric that’ll keep your pillow clean and protected until you’re ready to use it.


The Ostrichpillow Go Neck Pillow has everything you might be looking for in a travel pillow companion. It’s firm, but not too firm, and we found it to offer a tremendous amount of support. Plus, the exterior is made of a silky-soft, jersey-like fabric that made for the perfect environment for getting some rest while in flight. It’s more expensive than our overall recommendation, but it’s a great option if you travel a lot, want a truly luxurious experience and are willing to spend a bit more

Unlike traditional U-shaped travel pillows that see an opening at the front of the neck, the Go Neck Pillow offers 360-degree support. We found that this feature is worth its weight in gold. During our testing, we loved how the front Velcro enclosure created the perfect resting place for our chin, resisting our attempts to slump forward mid-nap. Plus, because it’s attached by a Velcro strap, the closure can be customized to fit any traveler’s size and desired support level.

Courtney Thompson

When it came to transporting the Go Neck Pillow, we found that it couldn’t have been easier. Though the pillow offered enough firm support to keep our neck upright — without being too upright — the pillow also folds down. When we were done using the pillow, the memory foam compressed to 60% of its size, allowing us to store it in the included travel storage bag for easy transport. Plus, the storage bag has its own drawstring closure to ensure the pillow stays compact and in its case.

Alternatively, the Go Neck Pillow can be left in its 360-degree position and wrapped around your luggage’s handle. However, we found it to be more convenient to be able to store the pillow in its bag in between uses, helping to avoid it getting dirty during the travel process. If it does get dirty during travel, the exterior sleeve is removable and washable to ensure your neck pillow stays clean ahead of your next trip.

The Go Neck Pillow is on the pricier side, which was our only gripe. But if you don’t mind paying $60 for the pillow, it’s a solid investment that’ll help to ensure your next flight — or train ride, car trip or bus journey — is much more comfortable.

The most important things to look for when shopping for travel pillows are comfort and portability. You need something that’s going to offer real support without taking up a bunch of space in your luggage (thus defeating the purpose of being a travel pillow). With these considerations in mind, we settled on two major rubrics for our pillow testing criteria: comfort and build. We then had one short tester and one tall tester evaluate how comfortable and supportive the pillows felt when behind our heads, under our chins and in the crooks of our necks. We gauged how easy the pillows were to transport by rolling them up, smooshing them down and packing each into its carrying case (if included). We attached those carrying cases to our luggage and noted how doing so impacted our mobility. We also noted how the pillows’ covers felt against our skin and then slipped those same covers off and put them through a machine wash cycle. Finally, we factored in the cost and looks of each pillow to determine their overall value and to choose the best pillow for most travelers.

We used the following specific categories and subcategories for testing.

  • Behind-head comfort/support: We noted how comfortable and supportive the pillow felt when placed around the neck and/or behind the head.
  • Side comfort/support: We noted how comfortable and supportive the pillow felt when leaning our necks to the side as well as when leaning against a hard surface (as a traveler would be able to do when sitting in a window seat). We also noted how simple it was to readjust the pillows while resting on them or to switch sides.
  • Front comfort/support: We noted how comfortable and supportive the pillows felt when letting our heads droop forward and resting our chins on them.
  • Fit: We noted whether each pillow fit people of different heights equally well and if they were adjustable at all.
  • Portability: We noted each pillow’s size, whether it included a strap or bag for easy toting and if it could be compressed to take up less space. While some pillows were indeed heavier than others (looking at you, memory foam models), we found that a few extra ounces weren’t noticeable when carting the pillows around. Overall size, case quality and the ability to attach pillows to our luggage made a much more meaningful difference in portability.
  • Fabric: Nearly all the pillows featured a soft, velvety shell made from a velour or fleece-like material, but there was a range in terms of plushness. We noted how each pillow felt against our skin.
  • Washability: Given that travel pillows touch your face, they need to be easy to clean. We also noted how difficult it was to get the pillows’ cases on and off when necessary.
  • Breathability: We noted whether the pillows felt breathable and cool to the touch as well as if they tended to trap heat.
  • Appearance: We made note of each pillow’s overall look and gauged how likely they were to attract funny looks.

The J-Pillow is a fantastically comfortable option with a big caveat: It works best if you’ve got a window seat. Because the J-Pillow doesn’t attach directly to your neck or your seat, it tended to slip around unless it was wedged against a hard surface. The J-Pillow was also too bulky for us to easily stuff into a carry-on bag or personal item.

While a less versatile option than our top picks, the J-Pillow’s lack of neck attachment might actually be a plus for those who find regular U-shaped travel pillows restrictive. And when we could lean against a hard surface, the J-Pillow offered excellent head, neck and front-facing/chin support. Like the Cabeau S3 and Ostrichpillow Go Neck, it comes with a sturdy (though less compact) travel case that clips to your luggage. There also aren’t any covers or zippers to deal with; the entire pillow can be tossed in the wash.

The Trtl is essentially a padded neck brace and was the most portable pillow we tested. It folds down relatively flat, taking up almost no space in your luggage, and one of our taller testers loved its sturdy support. That said, the Trtl proved far too big for our shorter tester, and both testers could feel the plastic brace in the middle poking through its padding. The Trtl was also very warm (which makes sense, given that you’re basically wearing a wool scarf), and we didn’t love that you have to fully unwrap and rewrap the pillow around your neck if you want to switch the side you’re sleeping on.

$29.99 at Bed Bath & Beyond

Cabeau’s original Evolution model is a very decent travel pillow and cheaper than our top picks. That said, it lacks the S3’s straps, more-breathable cover and far superior case. In a choice between the two, the S3 is definitely worth the minor bump in price.

As a lightweight option to toss in your bag for camping or backpacking trips, Therm-a-Rest’s compressible pillow is an excellent choice. It compresses down into a compact roll and is both supportive and comfortable when used like a normal pillow (lying down). But because it doesn’t wrap around your neck or have any straps to keep it in place, it’s not a great option for trying to rest while sitting upright.

Bcozzy’s popular pillow didn’t offer us nearly enough neck support, and the material, while soft to the touch, felt less luxurious than our top picks. On the plus side, it’s relatively small and lightweight, and can be folded in half for more support if you’ve got a surface to lean against (it’s prone to slipping around otherwise).

Travelrest’s bestseller is a well-made and supremely soft pillow, but its memory foam proved too stiff in our testing, and its sides were so tall that they pushed uncomfortably against our cheeks. This stiffness also made it difficult to compress the pillow into its carrying case. We prefered the squishier memory foam and shorter side profile of the Cabeau models.

If you know you’ll have a hard surface to lean on, the Huzi can be finagled into a very comfortable position. It requires an illustrated guide to do so, however, and on its own doesn’t offer very much neck support. And while we loved (loved!) its silky, breathable bamboo fabric, the Huzi doesn’t come with a carrying case and took up a ton of space in our luggage.

The ubiquitous microbead pillow is lightweight and inexpensive, but its low profile leaves much to be desired when it comes to actual neck support. We didn’t love the feel and sound of the microbeads when pressed against our ears, and this pillow also doesn’t come with a carrying case. Given that it also isn’t machine-washable, this probably isn’t a pillow you’d want to rub your face against long-term. We also found that it tended to flatten out a bit with continued use over the weeks that we tested.

If you want a very lightweight and portable lumbar pillow, the AirComfy Ease isn’t a bad choice. If you want a versatile travel pillow, this is simply too stiff, too small and too slippery to be of use. It conveniently attaches to the back of any seat for extra support, but it just isn’t very comfortable. And while inflatability is cool in concept, in practice it feels like trying to sleep on a fuzzy balloon.

Read more from CNN Underscored’s hands-on testing:

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Horror on the Fourth: Suspect in custody after 6 killed, dozens wounded at




More than eight hours after firing a “high-powered rifle” from a rooftop onto a crowd attending Highland Park’s Fourth of July parade, killing six people and wounding dozens in one of the worst mass shootings in Illinois history, a gunman suspected of causing the carnage was pulled over peacefully on U.S. 41 in Lake Forest.

At 6:45 p.m. Monday, the Highland Park police said a “person of interest” — identified as Robert E. “Bobby” Crimo III, 22 — had been “taken into custody without incident” on U.S. 41 at Westleigh Road in Lake Forest.

The arrest came after he was spotted by a North Chicago police officer and following a short chase. Crimo was taken to the Highland Park police station, police Chief Lou Jogmen said.

Christopher Covelli of the Lake County sheriff’s office and the Lake County major crimes task force said authorities were using the terms “suspect” and “person of interest” interchangeably.

As of 9 p.m., no charges had been filed, and the police gave no indication of what the motive for the shootings might have been.

As news of the arrest spread, people began driving by the Highland Park police station and expressing their thanks to officers, yelling “thank you” and “good job.”

Robert E. “Bobby” Crimo III, 22.

Robert E. “Bobby” Crimo III, 22.

Highland Park police department

Stacy Shaulman, a lifelong Highland Park resident, was among a few dozen people who gathered outside the police station to await Crimo’s arrival.

“It’s been a horrific day,” Shaulman said. “I’m glad they got him. And, unfortunately, he’s a Highland Park kid, and people knew his family. His family has been around a long time.”

The shooter used “a high-powered rifle” that has been recovered, said Covelli, who said the gunman fired from a rooftop. “He was very discreet and very difficult to see.”

He called the crime “very random, very intentional.”

It appeared that the gunman had used an “unsecured” ladder to climb to the rooftop, Covelli said.

Authorities said the ownership history of the rifle was being examined by the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Victims range in age from 8 to 85

Lake County Coroner Jennifer Banek said five people were dead at the scene, all adults, and another died at a hospital. It wasn’t clear how old the sixth victim was. All of the victims have been identified, she said.

Among them was Nicolas Toledo, a grandfather visiting family in Highland Park. Also killed was Jacki Sundheim, according to North Shore Congregation Israel, where she worked as a teacher.

Dozens of the injured were taken to Highland Park Hospital, Lake Forest Hospital and Evanston Hospital. The “vast majority” were treated for gunshot wounds, though some “sustained injuries as a result of the ensuing chaos at the parade,” according to NorthShore University Health Systems, which owns the Highland Park and Evanston hospitals.

At Highland Park Hospital, Dr. Brigham Temple said 25 of the 26 people treated there were gunshot victims and that 19 of them had been treated and sent home.

Temple said they ranged in age from 8 years old to 85. About “four or five” of them are children, he said. One child was transported from there to the University of Chicago Comer Children’s Hospital, and another was transferred to Evanston Hospital.

Dr. Brigham Temple gives an update outside of Highland Park Hospital about the 26 victims who were treated there.

Dr. Brigham Temple gives an update outside of Highland Park Hospital about the 26 victims who were treated there.

The injuries varied. “Some of them were minor,” Temple said. “Some of them were much more severe.”

“It breaks your heart to see innocents wounded,” said Dr. Mark Talamonti, a surgeon who was among those treating the injured.

Shots fired ‘in rapid succession’

At the parade scene, one witness said he counted more than 20 shots.

Miles Zaremski, a Highland Park resident, told the Chicago Sun-Times: “I heard 20 to 25 shots, which were in rapid succession. So it couldn’t have been just a handgun or a shotgun.”

Zaremski said he saw “people in that area that got shot,” including “a woman covered with blood …. She did not survive.”

Monday’s Fourth of July parade was the first in Highland Park since before the pandemic.

As panicked paradegoers fled the parade route on Central Street in downtown Highland Park, they left behind chairs, baby strollers and blankets as they sought cover, not knowing just what happened.

Adrienne Drell, a former Sun-Times reporter, said she was sitting on a curb along Central Avenue watching the parade when she saw members of the Highland Park High School marching band start to run.

“Go to Sunset,” Drell said she heard the students shout, directing people to nearby Sunset Foods.

A man picked her up off the curb and urged her to get out, Drell said.

“There’s panic in the whole town,” she said. “Everyone is just stunned beyond belief.”

She ran across to a nearby parking lot with other people who had been watching the parade.

“It was a quiet, peaceful, lovely morning, people were enjoying the parade,” Drell said. “Within seconds, to have that peacefulness suddenly ripped apart, it’s scary. You can’t go anywhere, you can’t find peace. I think we are falling apart.”

Terrified paradegoers fled Highland Park’s Fourth of July parade after shots were fired, leaving behind their belongings as they sought safety.

Terrified paradegoers fled Highland Park’s Fourth of July parade after shots were fired, leaving behind their belongings as they sought safety.

Eric Trotter, 37, who lives blocks from the shooting, echoed that sentiment.

“I felt shocked,” Trotter said. “How could this happen in a peaceful community like Highland Park.”

Chaos, and a frantic search for family members

As police cars sped by on Central Avenue, sirens blaring, Alexander Sandoval, 39, sat on a bench and cried. He’d gotten up before 7 a.m. to set up lawn chairs and a blanket in front of the main stage of the parade. He lives within walking distance from there, so he went home to have breakfast with his son, partner and stepdaughter before going back for the parade.

Hours later, he said he and his family ran after hearing the gunfire, afraid for their lives.

“We saw the Navy’s marchers and float pass by, and, when I first heard the gunshots, I thought it was them saluting the flag and shooting blanks,” Sandoval said. “But then I saw people starting to run, and the shots kept going. We started running.”

He said that, in the chaos, he and his partner Amairani Garcia ran in different directions, he with his 5-year-old son, Alex, she with her 6-year-old daughter, Melani.

“I grabbed my son and tried to break into one of the local buildings, but I couldn’t,” Sandoval said. “The shooting stopped. I guess he was reloading. So I kept running and ran into an alley and put my son in a garbage dumpster so he could be safe.”

Then, he said he ran in search of the rest of his family and saw bodies in pools of blood on the ground.

“I saw a little boy who was shot being carried away,” Sandoval said. “It was just terror.”

He found his partner and stepdaughter, safe, inside a McDonald’s nearby.

“This doesn’t happen here,” he said. “It shouldn’t happen anywhere.”

Don Johnson, 76. who lives about two blocks from the shooting scene, thought at first the gunfire was a car backfiring. He said he ran with several other people to a nearby BP gas station and described the scene as “surreal.”

“It’s just a terrible thing,” he said. “I never would’ve thought this would’ve happened in downtown Highland Park.”

Johnson said his daughter lives in Chicago with her son and that he’s been urging them to move to Highland Park, telling her recently, “It’s safe.”

Now, he said, it’s clear that “it can happen anywhere.”

David Goldenberg, the Midwest regional director of the Anti-Defamation League, was among those at the parade. He’d gone early to set up chairs for his family along the parade route. He said he ended up moving their chairs to be closer to friends.

If not for that, Goldenberg said, “We would have been awfully close” to the shooting.

“It was chaotic,” he said. “Those sorts of things that you hear about — those split-second moments accounting for everyone in your family as people are yelling, ‘There’s a shooter! There’s a gun!’ ”

He said he knows of an adult who was killed, though he declined to discuss details.

Meg Coles drove from Atlanta with her 11- and 13-year-old sons to visit her sister-in-law for the Fourth of July, a family tradition.

“I just tried to explain to them that this is rare and probably won’t happen again,” said Coles, whose family was sitting about two blocks away along the parade route when the shooting happened.

But they weren’t buying it, she said: “I think it’s going to take them awhile.”

Sisters Christina Sendick, 20, and Angela Sendick, 22, showed up late for the parade, as people ran, some screaming, others bleeding. They grew up near Waukesha, Wisconsin, where someone drove a sport-utility vehicle into a Christmas parade crowd last November, killing six people and injuring 62 others.

“It’s just crazy no one can figure out how to put a stop to all this,” Angela Sendick said.

Pritzker: Mass shootings an American tradition

Speaking in Highland Park Monday evening, Gov. J.B. Pritzker said: “If you are angry today, I’m here to tell you to be angry.

“I’m furious that yet more innocent lives were taken by gun violence. I’m furious that their loved ones are forever broken by what took place today.I’m furious that children and their families have been traumatized. I’m furious that this is happening in communities all across Illinois and America. While we celebrate the Fourth of July just once a year, mass shootings have become our weekly — yes, weekly — American tradition.”

In a written statement, President Joe Biden said: “Jill and I are shocked by the senseless gun violence that has yet again brought grief to an American community on this Independence Day.”

News of the shooting spree in Highland Park prompted other suburbs to cancel their Fourth of July celebrations.

Former Obama White House adviser David Alexrod tweeted that someone he knew was at the parade, writing: “A friend took his kids to July 4th Parade in Highland Park today. His son has special needs. When shots rang out, they ran for their lives, the dad pushing his grown son’s wheelchair —which at one point tumbled over. On America’s day, what has become a sickeningly American story.”

After Crimo’s arrest, across the street from a mobile command center that the police had set up, Jerry Felsenthal, who’s lived in Highland Park for 32 years, said he worries that, with so many guns on the streets, there will be more mass shootings.

“It’s going to happen again,” Felsenthal said. “It’s inevitable.”

Contributing: Zack Miller, Frank Main, Mitchell Armentrout, Michael Loria

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Road Closures, Public Transportation Information – CBS Philly




PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Wawa Welcome America festival returns to the boardwalk this holiday weekend, and the city released information on Friday regarding road and transit closures for festival-goers and city residents.

Philadelphia police say they will have increased patrols in and around the festival areas.

GUIDE: Where to watch the 4th of July fireworks in the Philadelphia area

Jason Derulo and Ava Max will be headlining this summer’s concert at the Art Museum and along the promenade on Monday July 4th.

Here is information on road closures and public transport.


Friday – July 1

Our America Now: Expressions of Freedom and Waterfront Fireworks
The east and west parking lanes of Columbus Boulevard between Race and Arch streets will be closed from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Sunday – July 3

POP on Independence
The east and west parking lanes of Columbus Boulevard between Race and Arch streets will be closed from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

  • North side of Market Street between 5th and 6th Streets, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • 5th Street between Chestnut and Market Streets, 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.

The city will also close 6th Street between Chestnut and Walnut streets, from 8 a.m. to noon, to prepare for the celebration of freedom ceremony.

Logan Circle and Winter Street, between 21st Street and Ben Franklin Parkway, will be closed from 3 p.m. Sunday until approximately 4 a.m. Tuesday, July 5 for worry and the festival.

MLK Drive closed to cars Sunday morning ahead of the festivities. The city says it will give people a safer place to watch the fireworks. The road will remain closed until 5 a.m. Tuesday.

Monday – July 4

Tribute to America Independence Day Parade
The following streets will be closed for parade formation.

  • 2nd Street between Race and Chestnut Streets starting at 6 a.m.
  • Chestnut Viaduct/Market Street between Chestnut and Front Streets to 2nd and Market Streets starting at 6 a.m.
  • Market Street between 3rd Street and Front Street from 6 a.m.
  • Front Street between Dock Street and Market Street from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Chestnut Street between 2nd and Front streets from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.

And the following streets will be closed from 10:30 a.m. until the end of the parade.

  • 3rd Street between Race and Streets
  • 4th Street between Race and Chestnut Streets
  • 5th Street between Race and Chestnut Streets
  • 6th Street between Race and Chestnut Streets
  • 7th Street between Race and Chestnut Streets
  • 8th Street between Race and Chestnut Streets
  • 9th Street between Race and Chestnut Streets
  • 10th Street between Race and Chestnut Streets
  • 11th Street between Race and Chestnut Streets
  • 12th Street between Race and Chestnut Streets
  • JFK Boulevard between Market and 15th Streets
  • North Broad Street between JFK Boulevard and Vine Street
  • South Penn Square from South Broad Street to East Market Street
  • East Market Street from Front Street to City Hall
  • 12th Street between Vine and Market streets
  • 13th Street between Vine and Market streets
  • Arch Street between 12th and Broad Street

Freedom Celebration Ceremony
6th Street, between Chestnut and Walnut streets, will be closed from noon to 4 p.m.

Boardwalk Party & 4th of July Concert & Fireworks
The city says the following road closures will take effect at 5 a.m. Monday and last until 4 a.m. Tuesday.

  • Benjamin Franklin Parkway, 18th Street to Eakins Oval (all lanes)
  • Eakins Oval (all routes)
  • Kelly Drive between Eakins Oval and Fairmount Avenue
    • The Kelly Drive entrance will be closed at Fountain Green Drive beginning at 5 p.m.
  • Back of the art museum – Promenade Anne d’Harnoncourt
  • 2000-2100 Winter Street
  • MLK Drive from Falls Bridge to Eakins Oval
  • Spring Garden Street between Pennsylvania Avenue and 31st Street
  • 23rd Street between Pennsylvania Avenue and Eakins Oval

The city says the following road closures will take effect at 5 a.m. Monday and last until 2 a.m. Tuesday.

  • 1900 race street
  • 1800-1900, rue de la vigne
  • I-676 Exit Ramp at 22nd Street
  • I-676 on-ramp at 22nd Street
  • I-76 eastbound exit ramp at Spring Garden Street
  • Spring Garden Tunnel
  • Park Towne Place between 22nd and 24th Streets
  • 22nd Street between Winter Street and Pennsylvania Avenue
  • 21st Street between Winter Street and Pennsylvania Avenue
  • 20th Street between Arch Street and Pennsylvania Avenue
  • 19th Street between Callowhill and Cherry Streets

The following road closures will come into effect at 1 p.m. Monday and last until 1 p.m. Tuesday.

  • All roads from Arch Street to Spring Garden Street, 18th Street to 22nd Street (local access maintained for residents)
  • All roads from Arch Street to Fairmount Avenue, 22nd Street to Corinthian Street (local access maintained for residents)
  • 16th and 17th streets, between Arch and Spring Garden streets, will only be closed if conditions warrant in the interest of public safety
  • 1600-1700 Benjamin Franklin Parkway will only be closed if conditions warrant in the interest of public safety

Finally, the following roads will be closed from 8 p.m. Monday until approximately 1 a.m. Tuesday due to public safety concerns related to fireworks.

  • Kelly Drive from Fairmount Avenue to Fountain Green Drive
  • Lemon Hill Drive
  • Sedgley Promenade
  • Walk of the aqueducts
  • Poplar walk

The city says that depending on the size of the crowd, closures on the boardwalk may begin earlier in the night.


The city says people can easily get to the festival and activities throughout the weekend using SEPTA’s subway lines, regional rail service and buses.

SEPTA will operate on a Sunday schedule for July 4, but additional journeys on the Broad Street Line and Market Frankford Line for the fireworks. Click here for more information on the SEPTA schedule.

Buses will be in place from approximately 4:15 p.m. Monday for people leaving the parkway until the end of the event on the following streets:

  • 21st Street – West side of street facing south between Winter and Race streets

The city says the PPA will not enforce residential parking meters, kiosks or time limits just for Monday.


  • The city recommends that ADA vehicles pick up and drop off along 22nd Street for the concert and along 18th Street for the boardwalk party. The city says there is no parking, however, at locations
  • The downtown Philly PHLASH bus loop will have a special holiday service schedule on Monday. You can find information about this in click here.
  • There will be designated carpool and taxi drop-off locations for the concert and party at 17th and Callowhill Streets or 19th and Callowhill Streets.

The concert will begin at 7 p.m. Monday, with the fireworks set to begin at 9:45 p.m.

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