Friday, July 29, 2022

Lolla Founder Says Music Fest Will be Around for Another Decade in Chicago

Lollapalooza kicked off yesterday and the massive events future in Chicago seemed to be in question as this is the last year of their official contract.  Well it seems like the fest isn't going anywhere anytime soon (via WGN):

Lollapalooza will call Chicago home for another decade. 

The festival’s creator, Perry Farrell, spoke with WGN’s Dean Richards on Thursday, the first day of the four-day festival. 

“The mayor has given us a 10-year extension in the park,” Farrell said. “So we’ll be around here for another decade.”
According to other news sources the deal hasn't been officially inked, but seems like there is mutual interest to keep one of the summers signature events in Grant Park.

While (likely) losing the Bears to Arlington Heights probably isn't closely linked to negotiations with Lollapalooza, it would be another black mark to Mayor Lightfoot if she lost Lollapalooza.  It's a huge boon for the downtown core - hotels, restaurants, events, etc - and it's to keep money flowing into downtown.

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Take a Driver Through the Chicago NASCAR Course Through Grant Park

We posted last week about the NASCAR race coming to Grant Park - if you are interested in how this course will look and how the drivers will attack it here is a good video:

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

City's Last Ditch Dome Option for Soldier Field Seems Costly and Unlikely to Keep Bears

Seems like a costly, unrealistic last ditch effort but we'll see what happens (via ESPN):

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot revealed three proposals on Monday for renovations to Soldier Field to entice the Bears to remain at their home stadium of the past 50 years. At the center of the proposal is the construction of a domed stadium, which could cost anywhere from $900 million to $2.2 billion. Lightfoot laid out three options for construction of a dome: 

• The first would fully enclose the stadium by rebuilding both end zones with columns that can support a dome structure. 
• The second would require both end zones to be rebuilt with columns to make the stadium dome-ready. 
• The third option calls for modifications to make Soldier Field a multipurpose stadium suited to host soccer games while also making it a viable location to accommodate major concerts and a range of events.

The Chicago Tribune hit the nail on the head with this blurb in the article we read:
While she (Lightfoot) tries to determine if it’s possible to keep the team in Chicago, the mayor also needs to prepare for a post-Bears future at the lakefront so she can present a forward-looking plan to try to defray the loss of revenue and civic prestige if they Bears leave, which helps explain Monday’s news conference.

Thursday, July 21, 2022

NASCAR Race Coming to Grand Park & South Loop in 2023

 I'm not a NASCAR fan, but this sounds pretty cool (via WGN):

Some of the world’s greatest drivers will get their chance to compete on the streets of the Windy City in 2023. 

The NASCAR’s Chicago Street Race will take place the weekend July 1 and 2 of next year. 

The series and the City of Chicago revealed the route on Tuesday afternoon when they made the details of the event final.

In general loud cars and bikes are a bit of a headache in the Sloop, but we're giving this a pass.  Also love how the finish line is right at Buckingham Fountain.  Should have some pretty iconic visuals for this race.

Kudos to the city for doing something different.

Thursday, July 14, 2022

Cafe Bionda Reopening at 1924 S. State

 Well this is exciting:

Cafe Bionda closed during covid, but was a popular staple in the southern part of the neighborhood.  Will be nice to have them back on Sate street.

Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Shootout at Roosevelt Collection Parking Garage Very Early Monday Morning

A scary scene at Roosevelt Collection super early on Monday morning (via ABC7):

At least one person was injured in a shootout in the South Loop early Monday morning after a person pulling into a garage was faced with gunmen, Chicago police said.

A male victim was pulling into a garage parking lot just before 3:40 a.m. in the 1100-block of South Delano Court when a black Jeep and white sedan followed him into the structure, CPD said.

A total of five male suspects exited the Jeep and sedan and pulled out guns, according to CPD.

The victim, a concealed-carry holder, also pulled out a gun, and a shootout ensued, police said.

The suspects then ran back to their vehicles and drove away.

Several minutes earlier, three male suspects in a black Jeep got out of the vehicle and struck a 48-year-old woman in the back of the head in the 700-block of South Wells Street and demanded her property, CPD said.

They took her Chrysler 300 and other belongings.

Tuesday, July 12, 2022

City Talks Museum Campus Ideas and Dome at Soldier Field ; Bears Promptly Say No Thanks

Lots of movement last week on the Bears vs. City of Chicago drama.

For those not up-to-speed, the Bears have one foot out of the proverbial Soldier Field door and ready to move to the burbs.

In a final hail mary, Mayor Lightfoot and her team came up with a bunch of ideas on how to improve the broader Museum Campus (and ultimately hopefully keep the Bears at Soldier Field):

There are some interesting and well needed things (hello bridges to Northerly Island!), but as it relates to the Bears - THEY GONE!

The Bears issued this statement in response (from MSN): 
“The only potential project the Chicago Bears are exploring for a new stadium development is Arlington Park.” 
“As part of our mutual agreement with the seller of that property, we are not pursuing alternative stadium deals or sites, including renovations to Soldier Field, while we are under contract.” 
There you have it. The Bears are all-in on the move to Arlington Heights. 
The initial agreement between the Bears and Churchill Downs Inc. last fall for the purchase of the Arlington Heights site was for $197.2 million. According to Churchill Downs Inc. CEO Bill Carstanjen, the company can close the sale of the property at Arlington Park by mid-2023.

This is the clearest sign from the Bears that they're moving.  So...we'll see what the city does.  

(Hat tip: PB!)