Chicago Blues Festival Event Guide

Chicago Bluesfest 2017
Photo by Chicago Blues Festival

Every year, the city of Chicago hosts the annual Chicago Blues Festival, the largest Blues festival in the world as well as Chicago’s largest musical festival. Over 500,000 fans gather over three days to witness history in the making as Blues legends perform across five stages throughout Millennium Park.

From Chuck Berry to Ray Charles, BB King to Janie Hunter, Chicago Bluesfest has made a tradition of bringing the best in Blues to the stage, creating historic memories that last a lifetime for festival goers.

The first Chicago Blues Festival took place in 1984 and it has gained worldwide recognition ever since.

Here is everything you need to know about Chicago Bluesfest 2017.

Chicago Blues Festival Dates

Chicago Bluesfest takes place on June 9-11, 2017 in Millennium Park from 11 am-9:30 pm each day.

Chicago Blues Festival 2017
Photo by Chicago Blues Festival

Chicago Bluesfest Lineup

Bluesfest 2017 will bring you the best in Blues over three days of celebration.

Friday Lineup – Billy Branch & The Son of Blues, Freddie Dixon, Carlos Johnson, Bill McFarland and Chicago Fire Horns and Mae Koen & The Lights

Saturday Lineup – Nellie Tiger Travis, Theo Huff and The New Agenda Band and William Bell

Sunday Lineup – Ronnie Baker Brooks, Rhiannon Giddens and Gary Clark Jr.

See more of the Chicago Bluesfest Lineup.

Chicago Bluesfest Tickets

The city of Chicago hosts Bluesfest annually and has kept it free of admission for over 30 years.

Getting to Bluesfest

Bike – Bike parking is available on the park perimeter. Check the Chicago Bicycle Program for information and directions.

Car – Parking in Millennium Park is easy thanks to Bluesfest partner Millennium Garages. Get parking information, find directions, and pre-purchase tickets on their site.

Public Transit – The Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) makes it easy to navigate the city and get to the festival venue.

Chicago Blues Festival 2017
Photo by Chicago Blues Festival

Where to Stay for Chicago Bluesfest

The official Bluesfest hotel is the Essex Inn on South Michigan Avenue. Rooms start at $262/night.

Other hotel options include the 4-star River Hotel for $304/night or the elegant Palmer House for $253/night.

If you don’t mind staying a bit further from the festival, this 2-bedroom Chicago condo one block from Lake Michigan is $109/night.

Find all places to stay near Millennium Park

Chicago Blues Clubs

The fun doesn’t stop when the festival lights go out — you’re in the Blues Capital of the World! Check out one of the popular Blues clubs in the city. Rosa’s Lounge, Blue Chicago, B.L.U.E.S., Buddy Guy’s Legends, Gallery Cabernet, House of Blues, Kingston Mines, River Roast, Smoke Daddy, and Water Hole Lounge are all perfect venues to listen and dance to some Blues tunes.

Chicago Blues Festival Pro Tip

The Chicago Blues Festival goes beyond the event itself.  The city offers some other related activities. We recommend the Maxwell Street Neighborhood Tour on Saturday, June 10th and the Blues-items Market in New Maxwell Street Market on Sunday, June 11th, from 9:00 a.m to 3:00 p.m.

Also, don’t miss the 3 After shows to get a full experience!

Get all your festival questions answered on the Chicago Bluesfest FAQ page.

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