Windy City Smokeout Returns to Chicago July 8-11

July 9, 2021

Expect street closures and traffic impacts for around the United Center

The Windy City Smokeout, the country music and BBQ festival will return to Chicago on July 8-11, 2021, outside the United Center. The Office of Emergency Management and Communications (OEMC) reminds eventgoers to enjoy the festivities safely and be mindful of weather conditions, traffic impacts and safety precautions for this event as well as the others throughout the summer. 

The festival is located at the United Center in Parking Lot C (1901 W. Madison St), entrance located at Madison and Paulina. Event Times: Thursday, July 8: 3 – 10 pm; Friday, July 9: 2 – 10 p.m.; Saturday, July 10 and Sunday, July 11: Noon – 10 pm. For additional details visit

Street Closures

Streets around the United Center are closed in both directions on Madison Street from Paulina to Damen; Wood Street from Warren to Monroe; and the south curb-lane is closed on Warren Street from Wood to Damen. Traffic Control Aides (TCA’s) will be on hand to direct flow and impacts from heavy traffic. 


OEMC advises Chicagoans to be aware of weather conditions and to follow instructions and heed all warnings from public safety officials, since forecasts predict the possibility of showers and thunderstorms throughout the weekend. 

Public Safety

Report Suspicious Activity:  If you See Something Say Something. OEMC encourages residents and visitors to report any suspicious objects, persons or any unusual activity, to call 9-1-1 immediately or notify security personnel on site.


Other Weekend Events

Other events throughout the weekend that may impact traffic/crowds include:

Taste of Chicago

Thursday July 8:

  • Pop-Up Taste at Austin Town Hall City Market (5610 W. Lake St.) 12–7 p.m.

Friday, July 9:

  • Taste of Chicago To-Go at ¡WEPA! Mercado del Pueblo (2559 W. Division St.) 4–8 pm.
  • Taste on Tap at Goose Island Brewery’s Tap Room (1800 W. Fulton) 5–8 pm.

Saturday, July 10

  • Taste of the West Side at food business incubator The Hatchery (135 N. Kedzie Ave.), 10 am – 2 pm.
  • Eli’s Cheesecake and Robinson’s No. 1 Ribs — Taste of Chicago’s tastiest team and long-time Taste of Chicago “booth neighbors” at Eli’s Cheesecake Company (6701 W. Forest Preserve Dr. at the intersection of Forest Preserve / Montrose / Normandy) 10 am – 4 pm.
  • Pop-Up Taste: West Englewood community (6300 S. Wood St.) 1 – 7:45 pm: Beer garden: Live performances by local musicians 1 – 8 pm.

Sunday, July 11

  • Let's Talk Women Picnic in White, an epic picnic at Millennium Park (201 E. Randolph Street.) 12 – 3 p.m.

Sundays on State –

  • Community and interactive block party: State Street from Lake to Madison closed for the first event in series on July 11 from 11 am to 8 pm.

Fireworks at Navy Pier -

  • Saturday, July 10, 10:15-10:25 p.m.


OEMC will Monitor Events: Through a collaboration with public safety partners, OEMC monitors events and activities throughout the summer to ensure safe, enjoyable festivals.  OEMC will issue any alerts and notifications needed to keep residents and attendees up to date on weather conditions and emergencies.  Sign up for NotifyChicago alerts at OEMC also issues TEXT alerts for lakefront notices, issues affecting businesses or COVID-19 updates:

  • CHILAKE: For lakefront notices, TEXT “CHILAKE” to 7-8-0-1-5
  • CHIBIZ: For alerts affecting businesses, TEXT “CHIBIZ” to 6-7-2-8-3
  • COVID: Get COVID-19 updates by TEXTING “COVID19” to 6-7-2-8-3

For additional information on emergency preparedness information, visit the OEMC website at Follow the Office of Emergency Management and Communications on Facebook (@coemc), Twitter (@ChicagoOEMC) and Instagram (chicago_oemc_911).


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