Boystown bars welcome crowds on Black Wednesday

Tue. November 26, 2013 9:32 AM by News Staff

ralphi rosario spins black wednesday at progressbar

Ralphi Rosario spins Black Wednesday at ProgressBar in Boystown

Chicago, IL - The night before Thanksgiving is unofficially considered the busiest night of the year for bars and taverns, so much so that the night is often referred to as Black Wednesday.

"I can tell you from years of bar tending on Halsted that it is an awesome night," said David Sikora, creator and managing partner of ProgressBar, which opened in June at the corner of Halsted and Roscoe in Boystown.

Neighborhood bar owners and managers agree that Black Wednesday often rivals New Year's Eve and St. Patrick's Day as popular party nights.

"It's really the last big party before New Year's Eve," Hydrate Nightclub general manager Sean Kowta told "Many take the opportunity to go out and party with their friends and catch-up."

The extended four-day weekend coupled with the influx of out-of-town friends and college students returning home makes the pre-holiday revelry especially popular with twenty-somethings.

"All the college kids are back in town," said Roscoe's promotion and marketing manager Shawn Hazen. "All the patrons and locals who have moved to other cities are back for the holiday. Black Wednesday is always a fun night out in Boystown."

The popular North Side neighborhood is not the only Black Wednesday destination for Chicago's LGBT population, Northwest suburban PhoenixBar is also expecting a capacity crowd.

"We're pretty excited to have the opportunity to showcase the new space for those who may not of been here yet," said PhoenixBar general manager Justin Romme. "We opened our doors just as all the college kids were returning to school so many may not have had the opportunity to visit us yet."

PhoenixBar opened in the former Hunter's space in October.

There are plenty of Black Wednesday events listed on the calendar including venues open Thanksgiving Day.

Related: Top Ten events for Black Wednesday


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