10th annual Blues, Brews & BBQ boasts all-star lineup Aug. 20-22 in McHenry

  • The John Todd Band once again will open Blues, Brews & BBQ this summer at Petersen Park, McHenry. The McHenry Area Rotary's 10th annual fundraising event starts Aug. 20 and concludes Aug. 22.

    The John Todd Band once again will open Blues, Brews & BBQ this summer at Petersen Park, McHenry. The McHenry Area Rotary's 10th annual fundraising event starts Aug. 20 and concludes Aug. 22. Courtesy of Gary Mertz

Updated 6/22/2021 5:13 PM

The scheduled return of Blues, Brews & BBQ to Petersen Park in McHenry this summer is welcome news to fest fans.

And for this special 10th anniversary event, nothing less than an all-star talent reunion will do, said Diana Mark, lineup chairwoman for the McHenry Area Rotary's Blues, Brews & BBQ Committee.


"We are bringing together some of our best fan favorites from over the years," Mark said of the Aug. 20-22 event. "From local faves John Todd, Jimmy Nick and Ivy Ford to Chicago Blues greats Toronzo Cannon and Howard and the White Boys, plus the always popular Blooze Brothers and Kevin Purcell, our 10th anniversary year will be one fans absolutely do not want to miss."

The fest -- co-presented this year by D.C. Cobb's-McHenry and Gary Lang Auto Group -- is scheduled for Friday, Aug. 20, to Sunday, Aug. 22.

Gates will open at 4:30 p.m. Aug. 20, 3:30 p.m. Aug. 21, and noon Aug. 22. The fest ends at 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and 5 p.m. Sunday. Full lineup details are available at mrbbb.com/blues.

Tickets are $12 at the gate and $10 if purchased by Aug. 14. VIP tickets are $50, and include run-of-fest, three-day admission plus one BBQ dinner and four beer or wine tickets per purchaser and admission to the VIP area.

by signing up you agree to our terms of service

Children 12 and younger are admitted to the fest free. Advance tickets are available online at Eventbrite.com.

As the fest's name implies, Blues, Brews & BBQ has more than just great music to offer. An impressive array of craft and domestic beers will be available, along with hard seltzers, wines and other offerings. And, of course, Petersen Park will be dotted with purveyors of mouth-watering barbecue and other taste sensations, organizers said.

"After a pandemic year of shuttered fests, food vendors are champing at the bit to be part of Blues, Brews & BBQ this summer," said Denis Buch, co-chairman of the 2021 fest along with Don Tonyan. "We're grateful for their interest; it bodes well for all who attend."

It also bodes well for the McHenry Area Rotary, which formed last year when Rotary Club of McHenry and Rotary Club of McHenry-Sunrise voted to combine efforts. The intent of the newly merged club -- which will host not only Blues, Brews & BBQ but also Sunrise Secret Santa -- is to do even greater good for the community, Club President Mike Lehman said.


"Blues, Brews & BBQ has generated more than $300,000 since its inception in 2012," Lehman said. "That enabled Rotary Club of McHenry to contribute substantially to entities like the Northern Illinois Food Bank, TLS Veterans, Pioneer Center and others. It's our aim that the merged McHenry Area Rotary can create even more benefit going forward."

A key factor in that will be fest support. Sponsorships are available for all budgets. And, because of the merger, sponsors will receive recognition not only at the August blues fest, but also at the club's fall and holiday-season events.

"That's a win-win for everyone," said Tonyan, who has co-chaired Blues, Brews & BBQ for each of its 10 years. "We are so grateful to all who've supported Blues, Brews all the way back to 2012, and we really look forward to an amazing time out at Petersen Park this August."

Along with the co-presenting sponsors, top cash and in-kind sponsors to date this year include the Northwest Herald, Prairieland Disposal, Elgin Recycling, Star 105.5, Adams Auto Body and Service Center, Wm. Tonyan & Sons Inc., Charles Herdrich & Son, Grinders Ale House and McHenry Outdoor Theater -- Golden Age Cinemas.

Article Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.