Chicago, December 28, 2011. With 2012 just around the corner, the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events is getting into gear for summer. And it looks like they'll be some changes made.
The Taste of Chicago is back in the hands of the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs after a scaled down, somewhat anemic, run last season under the direction of the Chicago Park District.
According to today's press release the scaling down will continue with the Department of Cultural Affairs promising a new look and new dates for much of the 2012 summer festival scene. The Taste of Chicago 2012 will be getting both new dates and less days. The Taste, which until 2011 was the face of Chicago's 4th of July Festivities for 30 years running from late June until July 4, has been fast forwarded to Wednesday, July 11th through Saturday, July 15th for the 2012 season. It will remain in its longtime home in Grant Park on Chicago's lakefront and admission will continue to be free. No information was released on its new look. The release did say that "Taste will emphasize Chicago’s status as a “foodie” destination and feature classic Chicago favorites as well as offerings from Chicago’s new and emerging culinary scene."
The festival will continue to highlight entertainment such as cooking demonstrations from noted chefs, and local and national musical acts. The restaurants for 2012 will be selected starting early in the New Year. Applicants can apply online at www.tasteofchicago.us beginning in early January.
In addition to the changes for "Taste", the 27th Chicago Gospel Music Festival will be undergoing a facelift for Summer 2012 with new dates (June 21-24) and new locations. The 2012 Gospel Music Festival will take a cue from the Chicago Jazz Festival, providing free entertainment in several different locations, including Chicago’s Bronzeville, the south side neighborhood where the genre finds many of its roots. On Saturday, June 23 and Sunday, June 24 the event transforms the former Ida B. Wells public housing site, located on South Martin Luther King Drive from 37th to 39th Street, into a Gospel Music haven.
Dates for other large-scale City festivals include:
29th Annual Chicago Blues Festival, June 8-10.
54th Annual Chicago Air and Water Show, August 18-19.
34th Annual Chicago Jazz Festival, August 30-Sept 2.
14th Annual World Music Festival, September 13-20.