El Grito @ Millennium Park

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Tonight the Chicago skyline lights up red, white and green in honor of  the 198th Mexican Independence Day Celebration. After all, we are the second largest Mexican community in the nation (L.A. takes first). “El Grito” is the traditional reenactment of the speech by Father Miguel Hidalgo that sparked  the 11-year war that led to Mexican independence from Spain. In the motherland, President Felipe Calderon will repeat the words of Hidalgo and ring the actual bell Hidalgo used in 1810. Here in Chicago,Manuel Rodríguez Arriaga, the current consulate general for the city will officiate the ceremony.  The five hour celebration at Millennium Park tonight is worth leaving the house, putting on a good sweater and celebrating downtown with your proudest friends. La  Orquesta Sinfónica de Michoacán will close the night after some regional jams, baile folklórico and of course Los Mariachis. If you’re worried about getting cold bring out the wine to the park, and if you’re really badass pull out la tequila on a Monday night. Viva Mexico!

Fiesta: 5pm-10pm  Jay Pritzker Pavillion