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Celebrate Hyde Park Festgoers Get Their Fun on Close to Home

By Sam Cholke | July 22, 2013 7:19am
 Neighbors came out for funk and jazz and local cooking at the Celebrate Hyde Park festival on Saturday and Sunday.
Celebrate Hyde Park
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HYDE PARK — Many Hyde Parkers put off seeing former Kenwood Academy alum R. Kelly at Pitchfork to celebrate the neighborhood more locally at the Celebrate Hyde Park Festival.

For those who chose to abstain from Phish and other big concerts in the city over the weekend, the two-day festival on 53rd Street offered music, food and shopping.

On Saturday at the east entrance at Harper Avenue, Shawn Bullen and Alex Larson-Walker worked on paintings of Hyde Park musicians Milly Mango and Willie Pickens.

“I was working on a series of jazz portraits and I started asking around, 'Who were the legendary players from Hyde Park? And everyone said Willie Pickens,” Bullen said while adding some red spray paint to Mango’s lips.

In the festival grounds proper on Saturday, the longest lines were for Maurice Jackson’s rib tips.

Jackson said his barbecue sauce has been perfected over three generations of cooks in his family.

“My mom’s barbecue sauce, it’s right there, it’s like, 'That is barbecue sauce,'” Jackson said. “But mine is a step up.”

Many of the weekend’s performers and other musicians milled around with those waiting to get Jackson’s ribs.

Rodney “Sir Nose” Trotter of Parliament-Funkadelic and other funk bands was hanging out at Hyde Park Records listening to the DJs, shopping for records and taking pictures with fans.

Legendary funk band The Family Stone capped off the weekend festival with a performance on Sunday night.