New summer security measures at Millennium Park

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The Jay Pritzker Pavilion during the Chicago Blues Festival in Millennium Park on Thursday, June 6, 2013. | Chandler West~For Sun-Times Media

The city of Chicago has announced an updated security plan for events held at Millennium Park this summer.

The summer event season launches on May 19, bringing more than 80 free concerts, movies and other cultural events to the Jay Pritzker Pavilion. New security measures, including bag checks and alcohol restrictions, will be taken this season to ensure the safety of all attendees, according to the Office of Emergency Management and Communications

“In the wake of terror attacks in major cities and entertainment venues across the globe, the City’s public safety officials have reassessed and strengthened the security measures at one of Chicago’s busiest tourist and cultural destinations,” said OEMC Executive Director Alicia Tate-Nadeau in a statement Tuesday. “We want everyone to enjoy their experience in a safe and secure environment.”

Starting in May, a security perimeter will be set up around the park for all events held at Pritzker Pavilion, with each guest passing through a bag check. Firearms, knives and other weapons won’t be allowed in, OEMC said.

Guests will be allowed to bring their own alcohol to most public events at the park, as they have in the past, but restrictions will be placed on the seven events that expect the biggest crowds. Outside alcohol won’t be allowed into the Chicago House Music Festival, Chicago Blues Festival, Chicago Mariachi Festival, Grant Park Music Festival, Independence Day Salute, Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me, the Broadway in Chicago Summer Concert or the Chicago Jazz Festival.

Guests can still bring their own food and non-alcoholic drinks to this event, and additional food and beverage options will be offered inside the venue.

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