Rockford Hosting Basketball Event to Celebrate NBA Championship

28 Jun, 2019

With Rockford native and NBA champion Fred VanVleet returning home after helping the Toronto Raptors win its first NBA Championship, the Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau and City of Rockford invite residents and visitors to attend a free community celebration in his honor. Fred Comes Home will take place in and around the City Market Pavilion from 2-5 p.m. on Saturday, June 29.

Prior to the event gates opening, the community is encouraged to meet at Rockford City Hall (corner of N. 2nd and E. State Streets) at 1:30 p.m. to participate in Dribble the City, a ceremonial tip-off to the festival led by Rockford Mayor Tom McNamara. Participants must bring their own basketballs from home to partake in the community dribble from City Hall to the City Market Pavilion. 

“I can’t think of a better way to welcome Fred home than with this event,” said McNamara. “Fred showed up on the court and represented Rockford with the highest regard, including a shout out to the city and his hometown fans on national television after winning the championship. We are proud and excited for this community event.”

Fred Comes Home will feature the FVV Shop Pop-Up Store, food and beverage trucks, a kid’s area including basketball hoops and activities and a main stage production at 3 p.m. featuring guest speakers, surprises and an appearance by Fred VanVleet. For more details, visit

Schedule of Events

1:30 p.m. - Community gathers at N. 2nd and E. State Streets

1:45 p.m. - Dribble the City begins

2 p.m. - Fred Comes Home festival gates open (City Market Pavilion, E. State St. and Water St.)

3 p.m. - Main Stage Production featuring Fred VanVleet

5 p.m. - Festival ends

"We are excited to welcome Fred VanVleet back to his hometown. He was an important member of the Toronto Raptors Championship team and is certainly a standout member of our community,” said RACVB President/CEO John Groh. “We know the community is excited to welcome him home, to show Fred the city’s excitement and appreciation first hand. Saturday will be a memorable, fun and festive day in the City of Rockford.”

RACVB exists to drive quality of life and economic growth for the citizens of Rockford and Winnebago County through tourism marketing and destination development.


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