Where were the mosquitoes? I pondered, on a September-like evening at Ravinia last night, enjoying the sounds of British raggae group UB40. At our house, they would have descended upon all, wreaking havoc on our party. But here, as seems to be the norm, there were none to be found. It made for a much more pleasurable night outdoors.
Ravinia is a wonderful outdoor musical theatre, in the north Chicago suburbs. There is an outdoor pavillion to watch performances, or you can pay a low $15 for lawn seats to picnic and listen to concerts, the symphony, and kids’ concerts. When I was in high school, lawn seats were only $5, and we went to see a number of concerts, including annually Chuck Mangione and Jackson Browne. My high school graduation was held on the pavillion stage.
Some of the concerts today still seem like the high school “parties” I remember there from high school, with many large groups of friends and family coming together, some indulging a bit too much. Now we might have more refined food and beverage than in HS, but I think we have as much fun. Last night there were many people dancing on the lawn, as I have seen at other concerts in recent years including the B-52’s, The Coors, and Elvis Costello.
It is a little strange sitting in lawn chairs, sipping wine, listening to music over loud speakers. Couldn’t we do that at home? Yes, but here we can walk up to the stage if we choose, mingle with our friends, no one has to set up or clean up (other than our small tables), and it is such a relaxing, welcoming ambiance on a beautiful summer night. Our only time to go this year, we always wonder why we do not go more often. Summer just slips through our fingers, before autumn rolls in. It was one more enchanting Ravinia memory to file away, as the UB40 concert surprisingly fizzled to a close rather than ending in triumph. C