CHICAGO — Pot-friendly street party Waldos Forever Fest has been canceled after a large fire broke out near where the event was supposed to be held Saturday.
The fire happened about 6 a.m. Saturday in the 5000 block of North Clark Street, according to the Fire Department. One person was hospitalized. Photos show the fire occurred in what appeared to be a pop-up COVID-19 testing site; it threatened to spread to other buildings, but firemen were able to stop it from progressing, according to tweets.
The “main body of fire” was put out by 9 a.m. The cause of the fire is still being determined, a spokesman said. Further details were not immediately available.
The fire derailed Waldos Forever Fest, which was supposed to return to the 5000 block of North Clark Street after two years of going quiet due to the pandemic. This was going to be the first Waldos fest since pot was legalized in Illinois.
Dispensary 33, which organizes the festival, announced the event’s cancellation online and in emails. Its Andersonville shop is also closed for the day, though its West Loop location remains open.
“It is with a heavy heart that we announce Waldos Forever Fest 2022 is canceled and Dispensary 33’s Andersonville location is closed today due to a large fire that broke out across the street from the dispensary late last night/early this morning,” according to a Dispensary 33 email. “Thank you to the Chicago Fire Department for their fast and brave work to keep people safe this morning.”
The festival was supposed to feature Junglepussy and Sudan Archives as music headliners, with performances from Bambi Banks-Couleé, Mom Jeans and Lucy Stoole. There were going to be “cannabis-forward” vendors and local food options.
On Saturday afternoon, Dispensary 33 announced a makeup show happening Saturday night featuring some performers from the canceled street fest.
Sudan Archives and Jessy Lanza will perform at the Empty Bottle, 1035 N. Western Ave., starting at 5 p.m., doors at 4 p.m. More performers will be announced throughout the day and tickets are $10. Find out more here.
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