Rolling into Chicago’s Lower West Side the weekend of June 8th-9th 2019 is the fifth annual Pilsen Food Truck Social. As its eponymous name suggests, food trucks are the centerpiece of this well attended neighborhood street fest. Food trucks are featured along with local restaurant and retail vendors. There is an optional $5 donation to attend and a percentage of the proceeds from the event benefit local non-profits. 2018 benefactors included Pilsen’s St. Procopius Church soup kitchen and food bank, ArtReach Chicago, and the Chicago Dia de los Niños scholarship fund.
In addition to the mobile eats and the feel good charitable factor, other elements help put the “social” into Pilsen Food Truck Social. Pilsen’s own Thalia Hall programs the live music stage, promising a mix of relevant and cutting edge live music and local performances. In past years the event has featured youth bands from the Chicago Mariachi Project, and dancers and musicians from Academy of Mexican Dance and Music. The main stage also features an eclectic mix of local and touring bands and DJs of various musical genres. Headliners in the past have included Sonoroma, Helado Negro, Escort, Dos Santos and more. Pilsen's own 606 Records also participates at the event spinning tunes between sets. The 2019 live music and performance line up is TBA.
The neighborhood of Pilsen itself will be on showcase, with dozens of local artisans and retailers participating as vendors. Pilsen Food Truck Social also includes a good number of local restaurants along with the food trucks, in 2018 Azul 18, Dusek’s, Churro Factory, La Cebollita Grill, Honky Tonk BBQ, St. Procopius Church, and Dia De Los Tamales participated as food vendors. The 2019 retail and restaurant participants are TBA, and there are discounted vendor rates for local Pilsen area vendors.
Culture thrives in Pilsen, and Pilsen Food Truck Social patrons are invited to explore the heart of the community. Bold murals can be discovered in the most unexpected places — on the fronts of homes, along railway overpasses, and wrapped around train platforms. The artful vibe continues within storefront art galleries and studios. Pilsen Food Truck Social attendees are encouraged to spend the day, before, during or after the festival, discovering the diverse collection of vintage shops, independent coffee houses, art galleries, bodegas, panaderias, and restaurants throughout the neighborhood.
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