CHICAGO (CBS) — This weekend, Marist High School in Mount Greenwood is hosting a major fundraiser to raise money for students, more than half of whom rely on financial aid and scholarships to pay for $14,000 in tuition.
Father Tom Hurley, organizer of the South Side Summer Fest, said that to alleviate those costs, the school is hosting a music festival on Saturdays from 4 to 10 p.m. at the football stadium at 115th and Pulaski.
Hurley, a former pastor of Old St Patrick’s Church said the festival is modeled on the world’s largest block party, an old tradition hosted by Old. St. Pat’s through 2019.
“I took the playbook and said, ‘Well, let’s do it here on the south side, and I’m here at Marist full-time. So I came back to my alma mater and I found out that just like all Catholic schools, the price tag keeps going up, and not every family can afford it,’ he said. “At least 50% of our students and families depend on financial aid, so we said we should continue to organize events to raise some money.”
South Side Summer Fest, now in its second year, features food, cocktails, and three bands: American Pie, Mr. Blotto and Freddy Jones Band.
“Last year we had about 2,500 people. We’re expecting probably double this year. The crowds in the neighborhood have been great,” said Hurley.
Last year’s festival raised about $60,000, and Hurley said they hope to double that this year.
You must be 21 to attend the festival. You can get tickets online. Pre-sale tickets are $35, and VIP entry – with access to a VIP tent including drinks and food – is $150. Tickets cost $40 on the day of the festival.