Chicago summer festivals include: ChicagoFest was a summer music festival in the city of Chicago, started in 1978 by Mayor Michael Bilandic. It was held annually at Navy Pier, and lasted for roughly two weeks. It featured sixteen separate stages, each sponsored by a national retail brand and a media sponsor compatible to the stage’s format, e.g. Rock WLUP, Chicago Tribune Jazz, Miller Brewing Company Blues and WXRT, that broadcast live from the festival. The stages were: Rock, Classic Rock, Country, Blues, Comedy, Roller Disco, Pin Ball Arcade, Jazz, Children’s, Variety, Ethnic, as well as a Main stage seating 30,000. There were approximately 600 performances produced each year.
The Chicago Jazz Festival is a popular and well-known four-day free celebration of jazz now based in Millennium Park located in the Loop area of downtown Chicago. It is run by the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and programmed with the assistance of Jazz Institute of Chicago during Labor Day weekend, integrating both world-famous and local artists playing a wide variety of jazz music.
The Taste of Chicago (known locally as The Taste) is the world’s largest food festival, held for five days in July in Chicago, Illinois in Grant Park. The event is the largest festival in Chicago. Non-food-related events include live music on multiple stages, including the Petrillo Music Shell, pavilions, and performances. Musical acts vary from local artists to nationally known artists like Carlos Santana, Moby, Kenny Rogers or Robert Plant. Since 2008, The Chicago Country Music Festival no longer occurs simultaneously with Taste of Chicago as it departed the Taste of Chicago for its own two-day festival typically held in the fall. Rides are also present, such as a Ferris wheel and the Jump to Be Fit.
The Chicago Blues Festival is an annual event held in June, that features three days of performances by top-tier blues musicians, both old favorites and the up-and-coming. It is hosted by the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (formerly the Mayor’s Office of Special Events), and always occurs in early June. The event has always taken place at Petrillo Music Shell in Grant Park, adjacent to the Lake Michigan waterfront east of the Loop in Chicago.
Lollapalooza is an annual music festival featuring popular alternative rock, heavy metal, punk rock, hip hop, and EDM bands and artists, dance and comedy performances and craft booths. It has also provided a platform for non-profit and political groups and various visual artists.