WESTMONT – With summer just around the corner, several local groups in Westmont are excited to share what they have in store. Kicking off Memorial Day weekend, the Westmont Lions Club will host the Red, White and Bar-B-Q Festival and Competition at Ty Warner Park.
The annual Red, White and Bar-B-Q, which runs from May 24 to 26, is one of the Midwest’s biggest barbecue events, a grand showcase for serious cooks that draws in meat lovers and grilling enthusiasts.
The event is officially sanctioned by the Kansas City Barbeque Society, a nonprofit that “promotes barbecue as a culinary technique, sport and art form,” according to its website and Larry McIntyre, Westmont’s communications director.
In addition to barbecue, the festival offers other tasty eats from food vendors, carnival rides and live music.
Community members are invited to the Memorial Day Parade on May 27 to honor the servicemen and women who made the ultimate sacrifice and lost their lives. The parade starts at 10:30 a.m. at Cass Avenue and Naperville Road and leads into a ceremony at Veterans Memorial Park on Richmond Avenue.
In June, the Westmont Special Events Corp. returns with Cruisin’ Nights and Street Fair. While the event’s focus centers on the classic cars display, which stretches along downtown Westmont, the event in recent years has expanded to include fun, family-friendly activities.
McIntyre, who founded the special events corporation, said the Westmont Public Library, fire and police departments and many other area organizations have helped offer more entertainment. New this year, the street fair also will create space for an artist exhibit.
“The goal is to get art into the public and support our local artist community,” McIntyre said.
The Westmont Special Events Corp. also organizes the Taste of Westmont, a four-day festival that takes place from July 11 to 14. In addition to the food, McIntyre said he and his staff have booked an eclectic music lineup.
From Sixteen Candles, a popular 1980s cover band, to Rico, a group inspired by the sound of Santana, guests will have a chance to wine, dine and dance. As always, McIntyre said, the last day of the event is reserved as a tribute to legendary blues musician Muddy Waters.
While those full-scale festivities have transformed into a tradition for Westmont, McIntyre noted there are plenty of other events scattered all throughout the coming weeks for families and friends to enjoy, starting with the Westmont Chamber’s eighth annual Pet Promenade and Party in the Park on May 19 at Ty Warner Park.
Festivities begin at 11 a.m. and include animal shelter booths and live demonstrations of sheep herding, police K-9 units and more.
As for the Westmont Park District, residents can look forward to Movies in the Park, summer concert series and a fireworks display July 4.
“Westmont takes a lot of pride and puts a lot of energy into creating community events that offer opportunities for all ages, and so we welcome everybody throughout the area to come to Westmont and enjoy these events,” McIntyre said.
For more information, visit Westmont’s website at www.westmont.illinois.gov. Inquiries for vendor or volunteer opportunities should be directed to Larry McIntyre at firstname.lastname@example.org.