Let the Fests Begin: Plainfield Trustees OK Irish Parade, Summer Events

The Plainfield Hometown Irish Parade will return this St. Patrick’s Day, while Plainfield Fest and the Midwest Brewers Festival are a go for summer 2013.

Winter is well under way, but Plainfield trustees were planning ahead for summer Monday as they signed off on plans for this year’s Plainfield Fest and Midwest Brewers Festival.

The village board also approved road closures for the Village Preservation Association's 2013 Plainfield Hometown Irish Parade, which is set to step off at 1 p.m. Sunday, March 17.

The event, which got its start as a small neighborhood St. Patrick’s Day celebration, drew more than 6,000 spectators last year, according to Tom Ruane of the Village Preservation Association.

Eleven years later, the parade has made its way into downtown Plainfield and is held in conjunction with a fundraiser for the St. Baldrick’s Foundation.

“It grows every year because of everyone’s participation,” Ruane said.

The Knights of Columbus is proposing to hold this year’s St. Baldrick’s head-shaving fundraiser, which supports childhood cancer research, at the former Plainfield Fire Protection District Station No. 1 on Des Plaines Street.

St. Baldrick’s would not be part of a larger St. Patrick’s Day celebration held by a private business, according to village documents.

The following road closures are proposed for the parade and expected to last from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. March 17:

  • James Street
  • Lockport Street (between James and Illinois streets)
  • Illinois Street (from Lockport to Commercial Street)
  • Commercial Street (from Illinois to James Street)

Other anticipated closures:

  • Des Plaines Street from Lockport to Chicago Street from 6 p.m. Saturday, March 16, to 6 p.m. Sunday, March 17. The area would be closed to provide an area for family entertainment, such as inflatables, and a viewing stand for the parade.
  • Des Plaines Street from Lockport Street north to Oak Street from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. March 17 for the St. Baldrick’s fundraiser.

Cost for parade entries (except for bicycles and non-profit entries) is $35. For an entry form, visit the Plainfield Hometown Irish Parade website or click here. Other forms, including parade waivers and entry forms for bicycles, are here.

The deadline to submit an application form and payment is March 7. 

Summer events

Plainfield Fest, the signature fundraiser for the Plainfield Riverfront Foundation, also got the nod on Monday.

Trustees signed off on road closures for Plainfield Fest 2013, set for Friday, July 19 through Sunday, July 21.

The board also gave the Riverfront Foundation the OK to use village-owned property for the event, held in downtown Plainfield.

The approvals will allow the foundation enter into contracts with vendors, seek sponsorships, obtain permits and continue with advanced planning, according to village documents.

The event, which features a carnival, food vendors and a lineup of musical acts, generated more than $70,000 for the Riverfront Foundation in 2012. The foundation is dedicated to advancing plans to develop the riverfront area near downtown Plainfield.

Midwest Brewers Fest was also approved for a third year; this time, the annual craft beer festival will take place Saturday, Aug. 24.

“It was a well-run event,” Plainfield Police Chief John Konopek said of the 2012 fest, which got off to a bit of a rocky start in its first year.

Last summer, Brewers Fest featured more than 50 craft breweries and raised $25,000 for the Plainfield Riverfront Foundation. It attracted 3,000 spectators and volunteers.

“These benefits were achieved without requiring road closures or other impacts to the Plainfield community, and any costs incurred by the village for municipal services required to support the event were reimbursed from event proceeds,” village planner Jonathan Proulx said in a memo to the village board.

The board’s approval of Brewers Fest 2013 came with some stipulations; namely, that fest organizers adhere to a schedule of “milestone dates” to ensure a smooth planning process.

The schedule requires organizers to execute a license agreement by April 1, have an insurance policy submitted and approved by May 6 and submit a liquor license application by the same date. They are also required to make a down payment for the anticipated cost of municipal services by Aug. 16, and provide disclosure of income and expenses by Oct. 7.

Ed Arter January 08, 2013 at 04:17 PM
Michael "Mike" Keniley January 08, 2013 at 04:57 PM
Mr. Arter...thanks. Unfortunately, the site hasn't been updated for this year's Irish Parade event.
Shannon Antinori January 08, 2013 at 05:22 PM
The organizers tell me they're checking into why the site is down ... I'll post parade signup information as soon as it's available.
Shannon Antinori January 08, 2013 at 07:48 PM
The story has been updated with Irish parade entry information and links to the website and application forms.
Michael "Mike" Keniley January 08, 2013 at 10:06 PM
Thanks Shannon & Mr. Arter!


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