CHICAGO (AP)- Hurt by the economy, small towns in northern Illinois have struggled to pay for July Fourth fireworks, forcing some to cancel or scale down shows in recent years.

That looks set to change this year, as communities band together to share the tens of thousands of dollars in costs and find other ways of raising the cash.

The (Arlington Heights) Daily Herald reported Saturday that one such collaborative effort involves the towns of Elgin, Hanover Park, Hanover Township and Hoffman Estates. That has ensured the Northwest Fourth-Fest from July 4-8 will feature a fireworks display. Those Chicago suburbs are billing it as their biggest one ever.

And in Mount Prospect, donations are collected in cans placed at businesses in a campaign dubbed “Bang for a Buck.”

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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