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Wild Hare to Host First Live Music in Three Years Friday

By Paul Biasco | July 31, 2014 5:36am
 The Wild Hare, 2610 N. Halsted St.
The Wild Hare, 2610 N. Halsted St.
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DNAinfo/Paul Biasco

LINCOLN PARK — The Wild Hare goes live again this weekend, more than three years after the last show at the original Wrigleyville location.

The reggae club moved to the Lincoln Park location at 2610 N. Halsted St. in early 2012, but had been operating as a restaurant and bar while awaiting the end of a legal battle.

A number of reggae bands are set to take the stage over the three-day Lollapalooza weekend kicking off with Gizzae, Dub Dis, and Fucha and friends Friday night.

Paul Biasco explains why neighbors (and the alderman) are upset about the return of live music to the popular reggae spot:

On Saturday the lineup includes Indika, Gizzae with Ugochi, Drea, and Boombostic and friends. On Sunday the Wild Hare is throwing a Lollapalooza after-party with live roots reggae.

 The stage at the Wild Hare in Lincoln Park.
The stage at the Wild Hare in Lincoln Park.
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DNAinfo/Paul Biasco

The Wild Hare faced neighborhood opposition in late 2012 and early 2013 and originally was denied a live music license.

The owners of the venue appealed the ruling and won in Cook County circuit court, but the City of Chicago quickly appealed that ruling.

The case had been in the courts until late June when the city unexpectedly dropped its appeal.

Ald. Michele Smith (43rd), who had fought the license, said she was "outraged" by the city's decision to drop the appeal.

In an email to neighborhood residents, Smith said the city did not seek her input.

"We got a slight heads-up, and we gave a heads-up to Wrightwood Neighbors, and boom," Smith said.

As part of the agreement to drop the appeal, the city entered into a plan of operation that the Wild Hare must follow to retain both its live music and liquor licenses.

Click here to view the plan of operation.

That eight-page plan requires the Wild Hare to soundproof the building and submit to testing of sound levels, provide free parking at the Home Depot lot located a block away from the venue and bans any music at the venue that contains lyrics or messages "that promote hate, intolerance or violence against any class or group of people..."

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