Navy Pier celebrates 101 years

navy pier

Chicago, IL – – Saturday Navy Pier celebrates its 101 first birthday.

A full day of free concerts and performances are planned at the new Polk Bros Park Performance lawns.

A special opening ceremony at the Lake Stage kicks off the birthday party with Native American drumming and dancing by Seven Springs, and a  procession by Native Veterans and local community youth dancers.  Cultural programming also includes an African drum performance by Oyotunji followed by an Asian drum and lion dance performance.

Because Navy Pier’s birthday falls on the 15th, its hosting dozens of young girls celebrating their 15th birthdays in its second annual Group Quinceanera Celebration.  Quincenera’s are a popular Latin American and Caribbean tradition marking the transition from young girl to young lady.  The celebration will include a group picture of all the celebrants and performance by Emmy award winning Chicago band, Sones de Mexico.

The concerts continue at 7:30 p.m. at the Lake Stage with the Fifth Third Bank Centennial Celebration Lakefront Swing.  It features performances honoring jazz greats Ella Fitzgerald, Dizzy Gillespie, and Lena Horne.  Chicago Natives Felicia Fields, known for her 2005 Broadway debut as Sofia in “The Color Purple” and E. Faye Butler, theatre actress and singer, alongside Grammy Award-nominated trumpeter Victor Garcia will share the stage to perform a tribute to the jazz legends that have inspired their careers.

Navy Pier’s Birthday Bash ends with the  Aon Summer Fireworks show at 10:15 p.m.