As the weather has begun warming up and more Chicagoans get vaccinated for COVID-19, pedestrian traffic to the Loop has been on the rise. | Provided
Sundays on State will host pedestrians and include recreational activities and shopping.
The Chicago Loop Alliance on Thursday announced its plans to host a weekly summer street festival, which will close down portions of State Street on Sundays for pedestrians, as part of the group’s initiative to help revive downtown’s economy in the wake of the pandemic.
Sundays on State will feature various outdoor performances along with recreational activities and shopping. The hope is to close down portions of State street to vehicle traffic and give pedestrians an opportunity to walk leisurely through different arts and culture experiences as well as visit retail shops and restaurants and bars.
While organizers are encouraging community members to get involved in the planning process and share any ideas with the committee, some possible programming for the event includes fitness classes musical and theatrical performances and art displays. There will also be “Instagrammable” backdrops for those who love snapping selfies.
“Sundays on State brings a refreshing new take on open streets to the city of Chicago,” Chicago Loop Alliance president and CEO Michael Edwards said in a statement. “The three primary goals of Sundays on State are to accelerate the economic recovery, unite the community, and create joy. We’re inspired to bring this revitalizing concept to one of the largest, most iconic streets in Chicago.”
“This exciting new initiative will allow us to go even further — bringing together people from near and far to enjoy not only our dining scene, but active recreation, art, culture, music, shopping and more,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot said in a statement.
Sundays on State is part of Chicago Loop Alliance’s Back In The Loop program, which is aimed at helping downtown’s economy rebound from the pandemic.
“Last year was incredibly challenging for the Loop community, which relies so heavily on the 370,000 workers and millions of visitors it normally sees,” Edwards said. “As vaccine distribution continues to ramp up, and as the weather warms, we see Sundays on State as an opportunity to attract people back to the Loop in 2021. In a time when people are eager for community and connection, but still want to stay healthy and safe during a pandemic, this free, outdoor block party is just what the city needs.”
Sundays on State is scheduled to take place each Sunday, beginning July 11, and will run for up to 12 weeks. The closures will last from 7 a.m. through 11 p.m., and the event itself will take place from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. For more information, go to LoopChicago.com/SundaysOnState.