LINCOLN SQUARE — The Square Roots festival is now postponed until August due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The music festival was originally scheduled for the weekend of July 10 but has now been moved to the weekend of Aug. 28 in order to help slow the spread of the virus.
Gov. JB Pritzker on Thursday extended the state’s stay at home order until May 30, but he eased restrictions to allow garden centers, nurseries, state parks and surgery centers to re-open.
Square Roots is organized by the Lincoln Square Ravenswood Chamber Of Commerce and the Old Town School of Folk Music and over 30,000 fans typically attend the three day festival.
Future decisions regarding the new date will be made with “the health and safety of the community first and foremost as well as following recommendations from the CDC, City of Chicago and the State of Illinois,” said the organizers in a release.
Last year the fest included more than 300 musicians alongside food and beer from Gather, Luella’s Southern Kitchen, Bistro Campagne, Half Acre Beer Company, Dovetail Brewing and more.
Past performers have included Son Volt, Cracker, The Jayhawks, Mekons, Lydia Loveless, Urge Overkill, Pokey LaFarge, Dessa, Beach Bunny, Kermit Ruffins, Sidi Touré, Waco Brothers, Matthew Sweet and many more.
The festival had an economic impact of over $958,000 on the local economy during the 2019 festival, according to the chamber.
“We’re not outright canceling right now because of its importance to our area’s local businesses, vendors and musicians. Many of them are hurting right now,” said Rudy Flores, the chamber’s executive director. “This festival, like many in the city, brings in a lot of revenue for all of them in just one weekend.”
The August date is still subject to change but figuring out how to host the festival once the virus is better under control is important to the long term economic health of Lincoln Square’s commercial corridors.
“We’re looking at how social distancing would work and adding more hand washing stations,” he said. “We hope hosting this festival later in the summer could help them recoup some of the loses they’re experiencing right now.”
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