We were so looking forward to taking part in City Made Fest this year. The event that focuses on crafts, products, beer and music that is made in the city of Chicago – not suburbs or anywhere else. This was our first Chicago street festival and our favorite. We loved the concept and the culture it promotes.
After our second year the organizing entity merged with the Andersonville Chamber of Commerce. We learned that last year the event was to be on hiatus with no reason given. It was assumed that major work being done on city water and sewer lines that started last fall was a cause. Today I learned that the festival is not going to happen this year either. A reason given was not explanatory enough – “based upon feedback”.
A great event that raised awareness of locally made goods and was well attended is not going to happen again for no real reason. The neighborhood Chamber of Commerce that now oversees this event has another, bigger, event they produce. Andersonville’s Midsommarfest is HUGE. It draws vendors and participants from all over the country. People from all around flock to Clark Street to experience it. One would think that such a festival would be enough, that a smaller fest held later in the summer is not needed in a neighborhood.
Roscoe Village, another Chicago neighborhood that also hosts street festivals, is capable of supporting 3 such festivals and they are only weeks apart. Two of the festivals are on the same street, covering same blocks. The beneficiaries of the revenues may be different but the organizing entities are pretty much the same.
Andersonville has been very kind to us and our relationship started with that first City Made Fest that we were a part of. We will continue to support this community as they have us. It is sad that such a needed unique event will not happen again and there is no explanation why.