Much like the Chicago Skyway and parking meters, Chicago is now looking to privatize the Taste of Chicago, but received only one bid, from Celebrate Chicago, LLC, to take it over. The move, if the city accepts this bid, will see patrons paying a $20 entrance fee, $10 of which will be rebated in the form of food and drink tickets.
The city lost more than $7 million on Taste and other lakefront festivals, like Blues and Jazz fests, over the last three years. Celebrate Chicago, a partnership between Jam Productions, AEG Live and the Illinois Restaurant Association, would take control of managing the festival and would try to bring in bigger musical acts to perform on the main stages during Taste. For that, tickets would top out at $65, but the admission fee into the festival would be absorbed into that. One thing that does sound interesting is the group is planning to restructure the set up by grouping restaurants together by neighborhood to give people a "real sense of Chicago," as reported in the Sun Times.
Sure, this is a way to help Chicago plug up some of its deficit since millions of people flock to the Taste each year, but if they charge $20 to get in, would you go? Leave a comment and let us know your opinion.
· Sole Bid for Taste of Chicago Would Increase Admission [Sun-Times]
What would you pay for Taste? [Photo: Chicago Free]