Navy Pier will move into the next phase of its reopening plans on Thursday, May 20, restoring public access to indoor spaces and continuing the gradual reopening of select businesses—with the goal of being fully open by Memorial Day Weekend. The Pier will also launch its annual slate of free summer arts and cultural programs over the holiday weekend with ample public health and safety measures in place.
As part of the second phase, the following will be open and accessible to the public: Fifth Third Bank Family Pavilion, Peoples Energy Welcome Pavilion, Polk Bros Park, North and South Docks, Pier Park (including all rides and attractions), East End Plaza, tour boats and cruises, the new Sable hotel, some retail shops and select restaurants and parking garages. More businesses will gradually come online over the coming week as the Pier looks to resume full operations by Memorial Day Weekend.
Starting Friday, May 28, hours of operation will transition to the following extended summer hours through Labor Day: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. from Sunday to Thursday and 10 a.m. to midnight on Friday and Saturday (hours may vary per establishment). Navy Pier parking garage rates will also change from the current flat rate of $29 to tiered hourly rates. Discounted parking is also available at nearby parking garages, including City Front Place, Grand Plaza, Ogden Plaza and Millennium Park. Discounts range from $13 to $15 based on the garage and with validation at Navy Pier Guest Services.
“As our community continues to make progress in recovery from the pandemic, we are thrilled to continue welcoming guests back to the lakefront safely,” said Navy Pier President and CEO Marilynn Gardner. “As tourism also begins to resume, we encourage local and regional travelers to consider a visit and overnight stay to take advantage of our vast open spaces, dining, retail, attractions, arts and culture and new hotel.”
Navy Pier’s popular summer programs are set to return to the lakefront—free and open to the public, thanks to ongoing philanthropic support of the Pier’s nonprofit mission. On Friday, May 28, the season kicks off with the popular outdoor Neighborhood Artisan Markets Presented by PNC Bank, featuring unique local artisans and small business owners from across Chicago. On Saturday, May 29, programming continues with the return of four classic weekly series: Wave Wall Moves, Wave Wall Wax, Live on the Lake! and Summer Fireworks. These series will serve as launch to more than a dozen individual and ongoing programs that will be offered throughout the summer.
All programs will be held with prioritized public health and safety measures. For events taking place on the Polk Bros Park Performance Lawns, the Pier will outline social distancing circles in the grass to allow guests to enjoy programs comfortably with those within their party, while maintaining at least six feet of distance from others. In addition, face masks will be required on site and Navy Pier’s social distancing ambassadors will be on hand to help ensure a safe, comfortable and enjoyable experience for all.
Navy Pier’s 2021 summer programming roster includes, but is not limited to:
|Neighborhood Artisan Markets
Presented by PNC Bank &
Supported by ComEd
|5/28 – 9/5 (select weekends)||11 a.m. – 5 p.m.||South Dock|
|Wave Wall Moves||5/29 – 9/4 (Saturdays)||3:15 p.m.||Wave Wall Platform|
|Wave Wall Wax||5/29 – 9/4 (Saturdays)||5 p.m. – 7 p.m.||Wave Wall Platform|
|Live on the Lake!||5/29 – 9/5 (Saturdays & Sundays)||Saturdays: 2 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.
Sundays: 2 p.m. – 8 p.m.
|Navy Pier Beer Garden|
|Summer Fireworks||5/29 – 9/4 (Wednesdays & Saturdays)||Wednesdays: 9:30 p.m.
Saturdays: 10:15 p.m.
Presented by Lifeway
|6/1 – 8/31 (Tuesdays)||Rush Hour Workouts: 6 p.m. – 7 p.m.
Sunset Yoga: 7:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
|Polk Bros Park – City Stage|
|Skyline Sessions||6/3 – 6/25 (Thursdays & Fridays)||3 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.||Wave Wall Platform|
|Wiggleworms||6/4 – 8/27 (Fridays)||10 a.m. & 11 a.m.||Polk Bros Park – Lake Stage|
|Navy Pier Pride
Supported by ComEd & Orsted
|6/26||1 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.||Pier wide|
|Water Flicks||7/8 – 8/30 (Mondays & Thursdays)||6:30 p.m.||Polk Bros Park – Lake Stage|
Supported by Allstate Insurance Company
|7/8 & 7/9||Wave Wall Platform|
Presented by Paul M. Angell
|7/2 – 8/27 (Fridays)||6:30 p.m.||Polk Bros Park – Lake Stage|
|Rhythm World||7/28||7 p.m.||Polk Bros Park – Lake Stage|
|LatiNxt||8/6 & 8/7||Friday: 5 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Saturday: 1 p.m. – 11:30 p.m.
|Noche Caribena||8/14||6:30 p.m.||Polk Bros Park – Lake Stage|
All events are subject to change. For more detailed information on each program, visit the Navy Pier website.
As Navy Pier continues to reopen, guests can expect the same level of heightened public health and safety measures as last summer. In addition, Navy Pier has gone above and beyond to ensure that its safety practices are of the highest standard. The organization recently earned the GBAC STAR Facility Accreditation, the cleaning industry’s gold standard accreditation for outbreak prevention, response and recovery, from the Global Biorisk Advisory Council, a division of ISSA—The Worldwide Cleaning Industry Association. The accreditation involved a comprehensive 20-element review process and thorough evaluation of the Pier’s facilities, cleaning procedures, staff training practices and more. Navy Pier has also partnered with NTT Corporation, City Tech Collaborative and a consortium of other leading technology and design partners to implement a Smart Solutions pilot program, which will allow the organization to carefully monitor guest volume and traffic across high-traffic zones on the Pier and alert staff members when a particular space or area is reaching its zone capacity. Click here for a full overview of the Pier’s COVID-19 safety measures. Given the fluidity and nature of the situation, the Pier is prepared to modify procedures as necessary.
Navy Pier was able to initiate its phased reopening thanks to the generous support of its dedicated board of directors and key individual, foundation, and corporate donors. As an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Navy Pier relies on philanthropic contributions to advance its mission as a world-class public place that celebrates and showcases the vitality of Chicago and provides for the enjoyment of locals and guests year-round. While this early philanthropic support funded the Pier’s reopening efforts, continued support from the donor community is critical to ensure Navy Pier remains a transformative cultural and community resource for residents, guests, local artists, fellow nonprofit organizations and Chicago businesses.
Navy Pier was temporarily closed to the public from September 8, 2020 to April 30, 2021 to limit the financial impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the nonprofit organization and the small and local businesses it houses. A top-attended civic space and nonprofit institution in Chicago, Navy Pier is home to nearly 70 independent businesses, several pop-up neighborhood markets, hundreds of annual events and many local artists who regularly showcase their work at the Pier, enriching the lives of Chicago residents and visitors, alike. Collectively, the on-site restaurants, retailers, attractions and nonprofit partners typically employ more than 3,000 people annually and contribute to the Pier’s reputation as one of the largest first employers for diverse young individuals in the city.
In addition, the Pier typically hosts more than 250 free public arts and cultural programs annually to educate, inspire and connect communities across the city and globe. With the undertaking of its critical nonprofit mission, Navy Pier recognizes its responsibility to the greater Chicagoland community and is committed to restoring the vitality of the Pier, its partners and the local economy as the city works to recover from the pandemic and its harrowing impact.
For more information, visit the www.navypier.org.