Blocktoberfest a blowout
Once again, Blocktoberfest exceeded expectations.
Attendance estimates varied due to it being a non-ticketed event, but the consensus was the outdoor party in Glenview on a hot Oct. 2 drew more people than in its 2019 debut, which itself was a success.
Meghan Kearney of the Glenview Chamber of Commerce, one of the event's main organizers, estimated about 12,000 people attended Blocktoberfest, some 2,000 more than in 2019.
Greg Goodsitt, lead organizer from Friends of Downtown Glenview, thought the number was higher.
"I would not be surprised if 15,000 wasn't closer to the real number," he said. "We were packed from 11 (a.m.) to 11 (p.m.)"
Blocktoberfest, which brought live music, family entertainment, kids' games, food and drink to Glenview Road, between Pine and Church streets, was canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"I think the huge crowd was a great indication of people wanting to socialize, people wanting to listen to live music, people wanting to see friends, support the businesses," Kearney said.
Former Chicago Cubs great Ryne Sandberg, arranged to sign autographs by event co-sponsor Glenview Bank & Trust, drew a long line of people who brought their own memorabilia to be signed. Sandberg "met everybody with a smile," Kearney said.
"He took so much time with each person. It was heartwarming," she said.
Kearney praised the work put in over nine months of planning by the Blocktoberfest committee, the festival's sponsors, volunteers and vendors, and support by the Village of Glenview and the Glenview Park District to conduct a well-received event.
"Everyone had fun," she said.
Goodsitt said the crew of 70 volunteers nimbly handled whatever challenges were thrown at them.
"The event couldn't happen without them," he said. "It's a community-driven and organized event that's staffed 100 percent by volunteers."