Riverwalk opens May 18 with three days of special events
Loop North News

CHICAGO RIVERWALK

(Above) Fireworks launch from the east side of the LaSalle Street Bridge on May 20, 2017. The one-minute-long grand finale pyrotechnic waterfall was also performed on the west side of the Clark Street Bridge. Photo by Patrick Pyszka. (Click on images to view larger versions.)

1-May-18 – Riverwalk season will officially kick off Friday, May 18, with a three-day celebration that the city says will be an “extravaganza of music, art, architecture, fireworks, and more.”

The schedule from Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events includes walking tours, cruises, live music, fishing lessons, and special pricing from Riverwalk vendors.

Now stretching 1.25 miles from Lake Shore Drive to Lake Street, the Riverwalk will open with 13 vendors, including two new vendors. Chicago Brewhouse will take over space below Wabash Avenue that had previously been the Riverwalk location of The Hideout, which operated for a few months in 2015. The brewhouse, which has a three-year contract with the city, will specialize in microbrews made in Chicago.

She’s Crafty The day before the rest of the Riverwalk opens officially, City Winery will offer a free show by Chicago’s all-female Beastie Boys tribute band. She’s Crafty (left) performs on May 17 at 5:30 p.m. Raffles and proceeds from two specialty cocktails will benefit Chicago Period Project and Gilda’s Club Chicago.

The Northman, one of six vendors with a ten-year contract, will offer food and beverages – specializing in cider – on the west side of Columbus Drive.

Frost Gelato has a new location, now on the east side of Wells Street.

Vendors not returning are Cyrano’s Café on the Riverwalk, Dulce in Horto, Lillie’s Park Grill & Café, and Wheel Fun Rentals.

Friends of the Chicago River

(Above) More than 100 people showed up to “photobomb” Friends of the Chicago River on the Riverwalk on April 27 between Clark and LaSalle Streets. The event, said the organization, “acknowledges the improvements in water quality of the Chicago River and tries to bring greater awareness of Overflow Action Days before, during, and after heavy rainstorms.”

Art project explores possible uses for bridge tender houses

Highlights of the Riverwalk’s opening weekend include free tours of McCormick Bridgehouse/Chicago River Museum on May 18 and 19, from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. both days. A new exhibition, Tender House Project, spotlights, says the city, “creative possibilities for Chicago’s bridge houses.”

The project includes design proposals from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s Master of Architecture Program. In addition, archival home movies of the Chicago River between 1940 and 1970 will be projected onto the porthole windows of the Bridgehouse from 3:00 to 10:00 p.m.

Also scheduled for May 18 is a performance by young jazz artists from the Jazz Institute of Chicago, 4:00 to 5:00 p.m., between Wells and Franklin Streets.

At 8:15 p.m., “pyrotechnic waterfalls” will light up the LaSalle, Clark, Dearborn, and State Street Bridges.

Friday, May 18

7:30amBird Walks – Led by Chicago Audobon Society

Beginning at the McCormick Bridgehouse/Chicago River Museum. The walks will take place on select dates through September. Visit chicagoriverwalk.org for details.

99 East Riverwalk

9:50am-7:00pmChicago Water Taxi will have arrivals/departures every 15-20 minutes. Route connections will include Metra Stations (Ogilvie/Union), Loop, Chinatown, River North, and Streeterville (Michigan Avenue). Use promo code RIVERWALK when booking tickets online for $3 off your All Day Pass. Promo code is valid online only May 15-20. Tickets can be purchased on board, on your mobile device, or at any Wendella Ticket Office. For exact schedule details visit www.chicagowatertaxi.com.

105 West Riverwalk

10:00am-5:00pmMcCormick Bridgehouse/Chicago River Museum

Tour the historic bridgehouse and visit the new temporary exhibition Tender House Project spotlighting the creative possibilities for Chicago’s bridgehouses. The project includes student design proposals from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s Master of Architecture Program curated by Mejay Gula, a Chicago architect and educator. In addition, the South Side Home Movie Project will project river-related archival home movies (1940-1970) from 3:00pm to 10:00pm on the iconic porthole windows.

99 East Riverwalk

10:00am-6:00pmUrban Kayaks

Two-for-one rental special May 18-20. Tours include Historic Chicago Tour at 11:00am & 3:00pm and Sunset Tour at 6:00pm

435 East Riverwalk South

10:00am-10:00pmChicago Electric Boat Company

Enjoy 50% off our 12-Passenger Riverwalk Boat Rentals during the weekend of May 18-20. Online reservations required at www.chicagoelectricboats.com. Use promo code RIVERWALK50.

27 West Riverwalk South

11:00am-9:00pmO’Brien’s Riverwalk Café

Enjoy The Mix from old classics to the current chart hits beginning at 5:00pm. Happy Hour 3:00-6:00pm featuring a $6 special & $6 beer, cocktails, and appetizers. For families, face painting for the kids.

45 East Riverwalk South

11:00am-9:00pmIsland Party Hut and Boat Charters

Enjoy music, bocce, ping-pong, bags, specialty drinks, and great food all weekend. Boat charters will be 15% off all three days.

355 East Riverwalk South

11:00am-10:00pmTiny Tapp and Café

Enjoy one of Chicago’s finest DJs, Jeff Pazen at Tiny Tapp & Cafe at 6:00pm. For full programming information, visit www.tinytapp.com. Cafe hours are 7:00am-9:00pm on Friday.

55 East Riverwalk South

Noon-4:00pmChicago Park District Fishing at the Jetty

Chicago’s Fish’N’ Kids will teach children and adults of all ages to fish for free, including supplies and instruction. The fishing jetty is located at Franklin & Wells Streets along the Riverwalk.

4:00pm-5:00pmJazz Institute of Chicago – Jazz Links

Jazz Links Ensemble led by Joe Powers. Young Jazz artists perform for opening weekend as part of the Year of Creative Youth. Riverwalk between Franklin and Wells Streets.

8:15pmPyrotechnic Waterfall Display

Delight in the grand finale display of pyrotechnic waterfalls along the Riverwalk off the LaSalle, Clark, Dearborn, and State Street Bridges.

Saturday, May 19

9:00amChicago Architecture Foundation River Cruise aboard Chicago’s First Lady Cruises

Enter for a chance to win river cruise tickets aboard a FREE CAF River Cruise celebrating the Chicago Riverwalk’s season opening. Check out architecture.org/may19 for more information. The winning passengers will depart on the river cruise at 112 East Riverwalk South.

9:50am-7:00pmChicago Water Taxi will have arrivals/departures every 15-20 minutes. Route connections will include Metra Stations (Ogilvie/Union), Loop, Chinatown, River North, and Streeterville (Michigan Avenue). Use promo code RIVERWALK when booking tickets online for $3 off your All Day Pass. Promo code is valid online only May 15-20. Tickets can be purchased on board, on your mobile device, or at any Wendella Ticket Office. For exact schedule details visit www.chicagowatertaxi.com.

105 West Riverwalk

10:00am-5:00pmMcCormick Bridgehouse/Chicago River Museum

Tour the historic bridgehouse and visit the new temporary exhibition Tender House Project spotlighting the creative possibilities for Chicago’s bridgehouses. The project includes student design proposals from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s Master of Architecture Program curated by Mejay Gula, a Chicago architect and educator. In addition, the South Side Home Movie Project will project river-related archival home movies (1940-1970) from 3:00pm to 10:00pm on the iconic porthole windows.

99 East Riverwalk

10:00am-6:00pmUrban Kayaks

Two-for-one rental special May 18-20. Tours include Historic Chicago Tour at 11:00am & 3:00pm and Sunset Tour at 6:00pm

435 East Riverwalk South

10:00am-11:30pmChicago Electric Boat Company

Enjoy 50% off our 12-Passenger Riverwalk Boat Rentals during the weekend of May 18-20. Online reservations required at www.chicagoelectricboats.com. Use promo code RIVERWALK50.

27 West Riverwalk South

10:15am, 12:15pm, 2:15pm, 4:15pm, 6:15pmMercury’s Urban Adventure Cruise

Kids ride FREE all day on our most popular tour. Relax and unwind on our 90-minute Chicago River and Lake Michigan cruise. You’ll enjoy lively narration and stories of Chicago’s rich history. It’s fun for the whole family. “Kids ride free” offer available for purchase at box office only. Mention “RIVERWALK” to receive. Maximum four free kid tickets per paid adult ticket.

112 East Wacker Drive

10:15amFREE Mercury’s Canine Cruise

Calling all canines! Our summer Canine Cruise is making an early appearance for a special one-day cruise. Canines and their owners are invited to join us for a FREE 90-minute River and Lake cruise. Sit back, relax, and enjoy quality time with your dog as you learn about Chicago’s rich history and architectural marvels. Reserve your space at riverwalk-free-canine-cruise.eventbrite.com.

112 East Wacker Drive

10:00am-11:00amTiny Tapp and Café

Join us at Tiny Tapp & Cafe for a 60-minute yoga class for all levels, hosted by Kate Gisborne from Coconut Yoga (Northcenter), accompanied by Chicago musician Dave Hiltebrand. More info

55 East Riverwalk South

11:00am-9:00pmO’Brien’s Riverwalk Café

Enjoy a melting pot of musical influeces with The Shannon Rovers Irish Pipe Band at noon and Simple Remedy 2:00pm-5:00pm.

45 East Riverwalk South

11:00am-9:00pmCity Winery Riverwalk

Music featuring DJ Saundra Suave 3:00-7:00pm.

11 West Riverwalk South

11:00am-9:00pmIsland Party Hut and Boat Charters

Enjoy music, bocce, ping-pong, bags, specialty drinks, and great food all weekend. Boat charters will be 15% off all three days.

355 East Riverwalk South

Noon, 1:00pm, 2:00pm, 3:00pm, 4:00pmChicago Architecture Foundation Riverwalk West Walking Tours

Enjoy FREE 45-minute CAF docent-led walking tour along the Riverwalk. See some of the city’s newest skyscrapers and learn about the Riverwalk’s history and design. Meet at the Vietnam War Memorial at State Street & Wabash Avenue. Reservations required ($3 fee) at architecture.org/Riverwalk2018.

Sunday, May 20

9:50am-7:00pmChicago Water Taxi will have arrivals/departures every 15-20 minutes. Route connections will include Metra Stations (Ogilvie/Union), Loop, Chinatown, River North, and Streeterville (Michigan Avenue). Use promo code RIVERWALK when booking tickets online for $3 off your All Day Pass. Promo code is valid online only May 15-20. Tickets can be purchased on board, on your mobile device, or at any Wendella Ticket Office. For exact schedule details visit www.chicagowatertaxi.com.

105 West Riverwalk

10:00am-5:00pmMcCormick Bridgehouse/Chicago River Museum

Tour the historic bridgehouse and visit the new temporary exhibition Tender House Project spotlighting the creative possibilities for Chicago’s bridgehouses. The project includes student design proposals from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s Master of Architecture Program curated by Mejay Gula, a Chicago architect and educator. In addition, the South Side Home Movie Project will project river-related archival home movies (1940-1970) from 3:00pm to 10:00pm on the iconic porthole windows.

99 East Riverwalk

10:00am-6:00pmUrban Kayaks

Two-for-one rental special May 18-20. Tours include Historic Chicago Tour at 11:00am & 3:00pm and Sunset Tour at 6:00pm

435 East Riverwalk South

10:00amIsland Party Hut Boat Charters

Bottomless Mimosa Cruise! Sundays are Fundays when you cruise the Chicago River with a bottomless mimosa in hand. The 90-minute cruise is $35. Soda, wine, water, beer, mixed drinks, and food is available for an additional cost. For tickets visit IslandPartyBoat.com or call 312-600-8454.

355 East Riverwalk South

10:00am-8:00pmChicago Electric Boat Company

Enjoy 50% off our 12-Passenger Riverwalk Boat Rentals during the weekend of May 18-20. Online reservations required at www.chicagoelectricboats.com. Use promo code RIVERWALK50.

27 West Riverwalk South

11:00am-9:00pmIsland Party Hut and Boat Charters

Enjoy music, bocce, ping-pong, bags, specialty drinks, and great food all weekend. Boat charters will be 15% off all three days – does not include Bottomless Mimosa Cruise on May 20.

355 East Riverwalk South

11:00am-10:00pmTiny Tapp and Café

For family programming stop by Tiny Tapp & Cafe at 2:00pm for music and family fun. For full programming information, visit www.tinytapp.com.

55 East Riverwalk South

By Steven Dahlman | Loop North News | sdahlman@loopnorth.com

Published 1-May-18 2:10 AM

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