CHICAGO — Riot Fest kicked off Friday despite pushback from residents who oppose large-scale festivals in Douglass Park.
The gates opened at 11 a.m. with eager fans waiting overnight to be the first to get in. Riot Fest comes as nearby residents are fed up with the festival and similar events taking over Douglass Park.
The community is demanding the city to stop allowing the park to be used for large profit festivals due to the limited access to residents and damage to the park grounds. Opponents also say festivals at Douglass Park violate quiet zones for Mount Sinai and Saint Anthony hospitals.
There have also been noise complaints and traffic concerns.
In response to the pushback, the Park District board president announced a proposal that mandate the full board to sign off these types of events — with more than 10,000 people attending each day.
Riot Fest continues through Sunday.
Their full statement is below.
“We understand the concerns from residents and want to do everything to mitigate those concerns and remain a positive asset to the community. We have been in Douglass Park since 2015, and we consider it our home. We are really happy to have hundreds of neighborhood music fans signed up to attend the festival with complimentary tickets from Riot Fest. Today as part of our effort to support local businesses, we launched a new app and neighborhood guide with a map of area stores, cafes and other businesses. Initial data showed fans mapping the neighborhood thousands of times in the first day.”