A&E

All the park’s a stage this Thursday through Sunday in Joliet

Free ‘Shakespeare and Art in the Park’ event comes to Bicentennial Park

Enjoy a “”a wild anarchic sense of play” and the works of local artists at the Billie Limacher Bicentennial Park and Theater during its free, outdoor “Shakespeare and Art in the Park” event this Thursday through Sunday.

The event opens at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 1:30 p.m. on Sunday.

Local artists, many of whom at part of the Joliet-based The Art Movement, will display their works for viewing and purchasing.

In addition, the Joliet Drama Guild will present William Shakespeare’s “Comedy of Errors” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday on the park’s pavilion.

Features of the play includes two sets of twins separated at birth as well as " mistaken identities, slapstick swordplay, misbegotten romance, verbal violence, explosive wit and glamourous adventure,” all with a steampunk twist, according to a news release from Bicentennial Park.

Toss in some Victorian-era romance and science and post-apocalyptic visions of Industrial Age Europe in the 1800′s and the result is “a wild anarchic sense of play and joy in storytelling perfectly fit to welcome the 2021 audience back to the stage,” Matthew Dodge, play director and Joliet Drama Guild’s vice president, said in the release.

“It’s time to get back to dreaming the big dreams that only theatre can make reality, and Joliet Drama Guild is here to supply the fairy dust,” Dodge also said in the release.

Artists associated with the Strange and Unusual Gallery in downtown Joliet did all retro-futuristic set designs.

The Billie Limacher Bicentennial Park and Theatre is located at 201 W. Jefferson St. in Joliet. The main entrance is still accessible from Jefferson Street, even though Jefferson Street bridge is under repair.

Cash bar will be available. Bring own blankets or lawn chairs for seating. CDC social distancing protocols must be followed. Free parking.

For more information call 815-724-3761 or visit www.bicentennialpark.org.