Guide to the Chicago Summer Music Festival – NBC Chicago


Officials began announcing the return of various music festivals to the Chicago area this summer after major shutdowns last year due to the COVID pandemic.

With vaccinations continuing in the Midwest, several events – new and old – are making a comeback in the region and could be a little different in the months to come.

Here are the festivals and music venues we know so far, in chronological order:

Pride in the park

Pride in the park announced their return to Grant Park in Chicago, with plans to move forward with a two-day outdoor festival in June.

The event is scheduled to take place on June 26-27, with an “COVID-free outdoor festival that brings fairness, diversity, security and sickening sounds to the main stage,” organizers said.

The lineup has not yet been announced. Tickets are on sale now for $ 75 for a two-day individual weekend pass and $ 210 for a VIP weekend pass, plus fees.

Ravinia Festival

Ravinia Festival has announced its summer concert lineup, preparing to reopen the park for the first time in over a year for a 2021 season in person.

The summer lineup will include 64 performances between July 1 and September 26, organizers said, and it will be the 85th season in Ravinia’s history as the country’s oldest outdoor music festival.

Some of the pop, rock, indie, country and reggae artists featured in the lineup this year include:

  • Classic Albums Live: Led Zeppelin IV, July 24
  • Yacht Rock Revue debuts in Ravinia on July 31
  • Sideline debuts at Ravinia, August 11 – Carousel Concert
  • Willie Nelson & Family and Nate Smith, August 14
  • Gladys Knight, August 18
  • The Infamous Stringdusters and Leftover Salmon in their Ravinia debut on August 20
  • The Beach Boys, August 21 and 22
  • John Hiatt and the Jerry Douglas Band, August 24
  • Lake Street Dive, August 26
  • Train, August 27 and 28
  • King Crimson and The Zappa Band debut in Ravinia on August 29
  • Collective Soul, Better Than Ezra and Tonic split the bill on September 1
  • Indigo Girls and Ani DiFranco, September 10
  • Black Violin and Blind Boys of Alabama, September 11
  • Ben Folds with the Ravinia Festival Orchestra, September 18
  • Ziggy Marley: A Celebration of Bob Marley, September 19
  • Andrew Bird, September 24

This year, all concerts will be shorter, with no intermission, and will take place outdoors in the open-air, reduced-capacity pavilion. Tickets must be reserved in advance and remote seats will be used throughout the facility.

General public tickets go on sale on Ravinia website in two stages: June 16 for concerts between July 1 and August 15, then July 21 for concerts after August 15.

Smoke from the windy city

Smoke from the windy city will be back in Chicago July 8-11.

The annual outdoor festival, which features dozens of local and national pitmasters and BBQ restaurants, is expected to accommodate up to 12,500 people per day, the city said. It is scheduled to take place in the parking lot of the United Center, with “an impressive musical lineup featuring country superstars and emerging talent.”

Grant Park Music Festival

the Grant Park Music Festival is back this year and will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays from July 2 to August 21.

The series will include 21 classical music concerts at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park. the the range includes Grieg’s Piano Concerto, the New world Symphony, the Guillaume Tell Opening, Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun, Animal carnival, Classic broadway and the annual Independence day salute.

According to city officials, all vendors, performers, ticket holders and staff will need to be fully immunized. Unvaccinated participants will be required to show proof of a negative COVID PCR test within 72 hours of entering the event.

Thunder Country

Country Thunder’s Wisconsin Popular Music Festival will continue this summer, with headliners like Blake Shelton, Dustin Lynch, Kane Brown and more, even as other state music festivals postpone or cancel due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Country Thunder has announced its 20-act lineup, saying the event will go on as scheduled July 15-18, 2021 at Twin Lakes.

Tickets are now on sale for Country Thunder. Other headliners include Clay Walker, Hardy, Chris Lane, Russell Dickerson, Tanya Tucker, Chicks with Hits and more.

Millennium Park Summer Music Series

The Millennium Park summer music series will run from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Mondays from August 2 to September 13, and at the same time on Thursdays from September 2 to 16 at the Pritzker Pavilion. Admission will be free, but advance reservations will be required for the seating bowl and large lawn in order to manage capacity. The lineup has yet to be announced, but will be revealed “soon,” the city said, with booking information to come.

Summer camp

The Illinois Summer Camp Popular Music Festival has announced plans to postpone its 20th anniversary celebration.

The festival website indicates that the 2021 event, which is scheduled to take place in Chillicothe, will now be held August 20-22 “due to the current circumstances surrounding the Covid 19 pandemic.”

An updated schedule is expected to be released “soon,” organizers said. Information for those in need of a refund due to the date change should also be published.

Previous lineup included titles like Moe., Umphreys McGee, Ween, Billy String, and Three 6 Mafia.


Union Park has announced plans to host ARC, a new dance music festival in Chicago, over the Labor Day weekend this year.

On September 4 and 5, ARC Music Festival will host a variety of house music artists, from Adam Beyer and Bob Moses to Camelphat and Cristoph, according to the website. At Union Park, located in Chicago’s West Town neighborhood, the music festival will take place on four stages over two days.

Tickets for ARC go on sale Thursday at noon. For early access, click here.

North Coast

Chicago’s annual North Coast Music Festival announced a lineup and venue change for the 2021 concert series last month.

During Labor Day weekend, September 3-5, North Coast will be held at SeatGeek Stadium in Chicago’s Bridgeview neighborhood.

The 2021 lineup includes an array of electronic music artists including Kaskade, Louis the Child, and Zeds Dead, among others. The music festival added a fourth stop this year to welcome artist-run record labels.

Tickets went on sale at the end of March and remain available here.

The Pace Bus service will offer a direct shuttle to CTA’s orange line, according to a statement. The four stages will be spaced out over different fields, with one inside a dome space.

Chicago in tune

Chicago in the air is a new city-wide festival celebrating the city’s “diverse and legendary music scene,” according to officials.

The festival has four events from 5:30 pm to 8:30 pm at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park “in honor of music born and innovated in Chicago”. This includes: gospel music (September 3), jazz (September 4), house (September 11) and blues (September 18).

Riots festival

Riot Fest returns to Chicago in September after postponing the 2020 festival due to coronavirus concerns, officials said.

From September 17-19, the alternative rock music festival will feature bands such as Smashing Pumpkins, My Chemical Romance and Pixies, among others, at Chicago’s Douglass Park on the city’s West Side.

On September 16, a day before the opening, Riot Fest announced that the festival will host a “preview night,” a special event for spectators who purchased tickets last year or who purchased tickets before the 16th. July. , first dibs on merchandise and carnival rides, according to the website.

Tickets are currently on sale for the festival here, starting at $ 159 for a weekend pass.

Summer festival

Summerfest, Milwaukee’s popular music festival, has released its lineup for the 2021 event, which will take place over three weekends in September this year and bring big names to Wisconsin.

The Jonas Brothers, Dave Matthews Band, Luke Bryan, Chance the Rapper, Chris Stapleton, Miley Cyrus and Zac Brown Band are among the headliners /.

Summerfest typically takes place from late June to early July each year, but has been pushed back to September this year to allow more time for the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine, organizers said.

The festival will now take place over three weekends: September 2-4, 9-11 and 16-18, with launch concerts on previous Wednesdays. Tickets are on sale now here.

Hyde Park Jazz Festival

the Hyde Park Jazz Festival returns this year, scheduled for September 25-26 at – where else? – Hyde Park.

the 13th annual festival is free (although a $ 5 donation is suggested) and will be presented on 14 stages in the park, with over 20,000 people expected to see 30 groups.

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