Market Days 2014 opens in Boystown: Everything you need to know

Sat. August 9, 2014 10:55 AM by News Staff

belinda carlisle headlines market days, saturday, august 9

Fun, festivities and plenty of parties greet thousands of visitors as the 2014 Northalsted Market Days opens in Boystown.

Chicago, IL - Nearly 200,000 people from across the country will converge on North Halsted St. throughout the weekend for the 2014 Northalsted Market Days, the largest two-day outdoor street festival in the Midwest, which officially opened Saturday morning and runs through Sunday at 10 p.m.

Delicious food, endless shopping and plenty of people-watching marks the onset of the 33rd annual event. The music, however, is what has thousands returning to Boystown this weekend. Throughout the two days there will be over 40 different performances on three main music stages. 

"The line-up for Market Days is nothing short of spectacular this year," Northalsted Business Alliance Ramesh Ariyanayakam told "From headliners Belinda Carlisle and Neon Trees to KarminSteve Grand, Charice and more, there is a performer to meet every musical taste, and all of it can be had for a mere $10 donation."

(Full schedule: Saturday, August 9 | Sunday, August 10)

Northalsted Market Days is organized by the Northalsted Business Alliance, the same group behind Chicago Pride Fest.

"We are carrying a lot of momentum from our Pride Fest line-up, and Market Days will certainly not disappoint. We are looking forward to a fantastic weekend," said Ariyanayakam.

As first reported by in February, Belinda Carlisle, who is the lead vocalist of the Go-Go's, will be among the headliners with a scheduled performance at 8:45 p.m. on Saturday.

"She's been someone we have wanted for a while and the stars finally aligned for her to join us this year," Northalsted Business Alliance spokesperson Jen Gordon said.

( Interview with Belinda Carlisle)

Neon Trees is hitting the North Stage on Sunday at 5 p.m. with their unique brand of fun, alternative new wave music. Their first single "Animal" was No. 1 on the Alternative Rock chart and No. 13 on the Billboard Top 100 and their hit song "Everybody Talks" was ubiquitous on the radio and at the clubs as well. Lead singer Tyler Glenn, who was raised Mormon and made waves in March of this year when he publically came out in a Rolling Stone article.

"We are very much like a rock band when we play live," Glenn told "But I think that as much as we are a band playing our music, we put as much theatricality that we can in the show... I never stand still. I love to entertain. Even if you're not familiar with all of our music, I think it's an entertaining show."

Also headlining is the pop duo Karmin, made up of Amy Heidemann and Nicholas Noonan, who hit the North Stage Sunday at 8 p.m. You'll definitely remember jamming out and belting along to their 2012 hit "Brokenhearted," featuring Heidemann's dynamite vocals as well as the more recently released "Acapella" and "I Want It All."

"When we had an opportunity to come back we decided to do it," Noonan told

A plethora of musicians, both local and national, also make their marks at Market Days this year. Saturday features R&B singer Deborah Cox (best known for her 1998 single "Nobody's Supposed to Be Here"), Crush on the Radio, out singer/songwriter Steve Grand, who gained fame when his music video "All American Boy" went viral last year and indie rock band Girl In A Coma, along with many more, including a performance by the Chicago Spirit Brigade. Sunday's lineup includes Mary Lambert, best known for her collaboration with Macklemore on "Same Love," on the Roscoe Stage just after noon, as well as pop singer Aaron Carter, younger brother of Backstreet Boy Nick Carter, Lez Zeppelin and the festival-favorite 16 Candles.

(Top 6 must-see musical acts of Market Days 2014)

"Beyond the music, we have a brilliant selection of unique and interesting vendors which is, of course, how Market Days originally started," added Ariyanayakam.

The annual festival has become famous for the wide array of food and arts and crafts vendors that it attracts. Nearly 300 food and arts and craft vendors from across the country will showcase and sale their unique wares to the crowd.

Northalsted Market Days runs Aug. 9-10 on Halsted Street for six blocks between Belmont and Addison in Boystown. A $10 donation is recommended. Organizers are also bringing back a $20 per day VIP section at the North Stage, which includes front-of-stage access, a backpack, a Pride Fest T-shirt and local business coupons, while supplies last. Tickets will be available at the information tent, 3524 N. Halsted.

Market Days Schedule: Saturday, August 9 | Sunday, August 10

Interviews: Belinda Carlisle | Karmin | Tyler Glenn of Neon Trees is a media sponsor of Northalsted Market Days