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City Made Festival in Uptown: 'Not Just Another Beer Fest'

By Adeshina Emmanuel | July 18, 2013 9:28am | Updated on July 18, 2013 10:34am
 A brew from Metropolitan Brewing, one of the breweries expected at the City Made festival in September.
A brew from Metropolitan Brewing, one of the breweries expected at the City Made festival in September.
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Metropolitan Brewing

UPTOWN — If it's not made in Chicago — forget about it.

The City Made beer, art and music festival planned by the Andersonville Development Corp. from Sept. 21-22 looks to celebrate "all things local," and touts itself as Chicago's "first ever local-only festival," according to the event website.

The two-block festival, which is free to enter but requests a $5 donation, will run along North Clark Street from West Carmen Avenue to West Argyle Street. Organizers with the Development Corp. and Andersonville Chamber of Commerce are seeking dozens of Chicago-based craft brewers, local artisans and musical acts for City Made's inaugural bash.

Chamber assistant director Jason Cox said he knows what some people might be thinking after hearing about the event: "'Great, another beer festival,'" he said, repeating a comment about the fest he saw online Wednesday.

“Oh, no. Actually, it’s not the traditional thing where you get this tiny cup and go around and try a hundred beers and then go somewhere and throw up,” Cox said. “There’s so many of those that we just thought it’s kind of oversaturated. We feel like this is something that’s really different than what everyone else is doing."

The festival will feature larger craft breweries such as Metropolitan Brewing in Ravenswood “that are pretty well established,” as well as “some of the smaller producers,” who are newer to the game, such as 4 Paws Brewing in Bowmanville.

While the festival will technically be located in Uptown, officials in Andersonville still do most of the heavy lifting when it comes to attracting and promoting commerce along Clark several blocks south of West Foster Avenue. Several new businesses have sprouted in previously empty storefronts in the area this year.

“We are looking at ways to sort of unify Clark Street. This is a really good big public event to bring down there,” Cox said

Proceeds from the event will benefit the Development Corp., an organization on "a mission to foster sustainable community and economic development in the Andersonville commercial district," according to its website.