Cicero Fest Returns

By: Ashmar Mandou

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local NewsCicero Fest returns for its 20th year ready for families to have a memorable weekend at the Cicero Fairgrounds. “We are so excited to see the reactions of families this weekend,” said Patricia Salerno, Special Events Director. “So much planning goes behind putting on a festival of this size and we are excited for residents to see all of the hard work. This is a great community event.” Salerno recently spoke with Lawndale Bilingual News about what families can expect at this year’s Cicero Fest. Cicero Fest will take place at the Cicero Fairgrounds from June 20th through 23rd. The festival will run from 5-10pm on June 20 and 21, and 10a-11pm on June 22 and 23. Live music will start at 6:30p on Thursday and Friday and at 2pm on Saturday and Sunday.

Lawndale Bilingual News: We are days away from Cicero Fest, what can families expect this year?
Patricia Salerno: This year we have a carnival, a variety of food vendors, we have two stages for music, and we have different genres of music. We will be having free giveaways. Although it’s going to be a hot weekend, we know families are going to have so much fun.

Lawndale Bilingual News: This is Cicero Fest’s 20th year, do you ever feel the pressure to outdo the previous year?
Patricia Salerno: We always try to put on an even bigger festival thanks to President Dominick and the Board for all their support. This is always a great community event; we are always looking to do things bigger and better. We do always try to outdo and take recommendations from our community members. During Cicero Fest’s first year, we had 5,000 people attending and now we have up to 20,000 to 30,000 people attending the festival. That is largely due to the people and to the support of our Town President.

Lawndale Bilingual News: In your opinion what makes this festival so successful?
Patricia Salerno: The community comes out and there is tremendous support. It’s a local festival, put on with the help of our Board and the help of our residents. We listen to their needs and what they would like to see happen in the next year. There is community involvement. Everyone has a voice. It’s also free entry, which we know helps families. This festival is a celebration of our community. I think that’s why Cicero Fest has been able to go on for decades.

Lawndale Bilingual News: How important is it for you to make sure the Cicero community has a say?
Patricia Salerno: Oh, it’s extremely important. I live in this community, I am a mother; so I know the importance of having family-oriented events. Having their input shows just how much they care about what goes on in their community. This festival is family-oriented, so why not listen to them?

Lawndale Bilingual News: For those who have, yet to attend Cicero Fest what can they expect this weekend?
Patricia Salerno: Prepare to have fun, dance, eat, and make wonderful memories.

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