Taste of Joliet opens Friday, the first day of the weekend summer festival that combines a large selection of food with big music acts and lots of chances to run into people you know.
Headline acts for the weekend include Foreigner on Friday, Cole Swindell on Saturday and La Banda Zeta on Sunday.
A new touch will be added at the end of Swindell’s performance – a five-minute fireworks show sponsored by D’Arcy Motors.
Taste this year also adds Tito’s Handmade Vodka lemonade to the drink menu.
Otherwise, it’s 25 food vendors, lots of music, a carnival and other entertainment for families.
“If you’ve come to the Taste in the past, it will look a lot like previous years,” Joliet Park District interim Executive Director Brad Staab said.
The menu from the assorted vendors at Taste includes pulled pork sandwiches, seafood gumbo, pierogis, quesadillas, eggplant sandwiches, marinated steak, smoked wings, toasted ravioli and chocolate strawberries.
Some of the local restaurants at Taste this year are Cemeno’s, Jerrie’s Dogs and More, McWhethy’s and Pizza for U.
As in the past, there will be free admission from noon to 3 p.m. Friday when the Taste first opens.
After that, admission is $16 at the gate and $14 in advance Friday and Saturday. On Sunday, admission is $5 in advance and at the gate from noon to 3 p.m. Sunday admission goes up to $10 after 3 p.m.
Hours are noon to midnight both Friday and Saturday. On Sunday, Taste runs from noon to 8 p.m.
Also, as in the past, Friday is rock music night with 7th Heaven, Hot Mess and AD3 Acoustic Trio performing ahead of Foreigner. Saturday is country music with Scotty McCreery, Tyler Rich, Dillon Carmichael and Cooler by the Creek performing before Swindell.
Sunday bands also will include Los Humildes, Sonora Dinamita, Alex Hoffer and Big Dog Mercer.
Advance ticket sales for the concerts are $50,000 ahead of last year, Staab said. But the park district counts on people showing up the day of.
“This festival depends a lot on walk-ups,” he said. “A lot of people wait to see what the weather is like.”
More information about Taste is listed on the website tasteofjoliet.com.