RTA offers help to navigate summer festival traffic jams; CHicago prepares to launch Taste of Chicago with preview

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RTA offers help to navigate summer festival traffic jams; Chicago prepares to launch Taste of Chicago with preview

By Ray Hanania

English: Overview of the Taste of Chicago look...

Summer Events and Festivals Mean Fun in RTA Region: RTA Trip Planner Offers Easy Way to Plan Routes; Avoid Traffic Jams on the Way to “Jam

Chicago – The Regional Transportation Authority (RTA) is continuing to remind riders that the fastest and most convenient way to get around this summer is by taking transit.  The fun is just a short ride away on a bus or train and a great way to avoid the second weekend of construction delays along the Kennedy Expressway and other congested areas in the region.

Choices include:

·         Escape the hustle and bustle of the city and hop on Metra’s North Central Service Line at Union Station to Long Grove for the Strawberry Festival (June 20) to immerse yourself in the scenery of a small historic town while taking in some great food and entertainment.

·         Take Metra’s Burlington Santa Fe line into Union Station from the western suburbs and make your way to the Gold Coast Art Fair at Grant Park (June 21-22). Enjoy incredible demonstrations by artists, live music, and interactive art projects.

·         The annual Swedish Days fest (June 20-22) in downtown Geneva will be filled with live music, a parade, a carnival, food vendors and kids games.  Jump on the Metra Union Pacific/West Line at the Ogilvie Transportation Center.

“Our transit system is the best way to reach your favorite destinations, whether it’s planning a mid-week visit to the museum, enjoying a night out for dinner or participating with hundreds of concert goers at one of the many free performances held at Chicago’s Grant Park,” said Acting RTA Executive Director Leanne Redden.

Riders can use the RTA’s Trip Planner to plan travel and select routes with handicap accessible services when necessary.  It is the only online site in the region that provides a variety of options for getting around our region, including transit, walking, bicycling and driving. For more information about how the RTA Trip Planner can help you plan your next trip, visit www.RTAchicago.org.  Not sure where to go?  Visit websites like Metromix (http://chicago.metromix.com) and Choose Chicago (http://www.choosechicago.com/articles/view/CHICAGO-EVENTS-FESTIVALS-2014-CALENDAR-HIGHLIGHTS/1243/#June), for a full listing of summer events in the Chicago region.



The Taste of Chicago is July 9-13 in Grant Park. Enjoy a “taste” of Chicago’s favorite food and music festival at a special Taste of Chicago Preview event on Wednesday, June 25 at Daley Plaza (50 W. Washington) from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. featuring eight Taste of Chicago restaurants and food trucks – plus two In the Kitchen with Mariano’s  chefs.

The new and long-time favorite Taste food vendors previewing their tasty 34th Annual Taste of Chicago menu items include:

Bridgeport Pasty – NEW Food Truck

Chicago’s Dog House – NEW Restaurant

Connie’s Pizza

Lawrence’s Fisheries – NEW Restaurant

Mamma Mia – NEW Pop-Up

Mariano’s – NEW Restaurant

Robinson’s No. 1 Ribs

The Smoke Daddy

Mariano’s, a new Taste partner and vendor will also bring their culinary expertise to the popular cooking demonstration area, In the Kitchen with Mariano’s, at the Taste of Chicago. At the Preview on Daley Plaza, two of Chicago’s leading chefs will give a cooking demonstration at noon.  Both chefs will be featured at In the Kitchen with Mariano’s at Taste.

Music selections from the Taste of Chicago Petrillo concerts will be played throughout event. The concert lineup previously announced is as follows:  AWOLNATION and Saints of Valory on July 9; Janelle Monáe and Gary Clark Jr. on July 10; Nickel Creek, Emmylou Harris and Parker Millsap on July 11; Jeff Tweedy and Lucinda Williams on July 12; and Aloe Blacc and The Wailers on July 13. Tickets for the seating pavilion at Taste concerts can be purchased at tasteofchicago.us and start at $18. During the preview, attendees will have a chance to win a pair of concert tickets to one of the five shows via the Taste of Chicago Facebook page and on Twitter, @TasteofChi2014.

Elysabeth Alfano, Host of Fear No Art’s The Dinner Party, will serve as the “emcee” for the Preview. The Dinner Party will be at the Taste of Chicago on July 10 at the Pure Leaf Celebrity Chef du Jour dining pavilion with Chef Andrew Zimmerman of Sepia and celebrity guests, actor George Wendt and Ji Suk-Yi of Windy City Live.

Taste of Chicago is presented by the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events and sponsored in part by Aquafina, Blue Bunny® Ice Cream, Bud Light, Chicago Transit Authority, Chicago Tribune, Communications Direct, CLTV-Chicagoland’s Television, Eli’s Cheesecake Company, Fleet Feet Sports, Gallo Family Vineyards, Genworth North America Corporation, Humana, Hyundai, Illinois Lottery, LaGrou Distribution System, Net 10 Wireless, Pure Leaf, Mariano’s, Martin’s Famous Pastry Shoppe, Olive Oils from Spain, Pepsi, Radio Disney AM 1300, Shoreline Sightseeing, Southwest Airlines, V103,  WGN-Television, WTTW 11’s Check, Please, 93XRT, 101 WKQX, and 103.5 KISS FM.

The 34th Annual Taste of Chicago is July 9-13 in Grant Park. For more information on the FREE admission festival, visit tasteofchicago.us, Join the conversation on Facebook at Taste of Chicago and follow us on Twitter, @TasteofChi2014.



Managing Editor at Illinois News Network
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