Tuesday, May 11, 2010

If he makes the cut, Arlington Park will host Lee DeWyze party

Tickets for free concert will be available minutes after 'Idol' names its top 3 finalists!

By Sheila Ahern | Daily Herald Staff

Arlington Park will host Lee DeWyze and thousands of his fans Friday if he makes the cut Wednesday and is named one of "American Idol's" final three contestants.

A concert at the track will be the last event in an all-day hometown celebration of DeWyze, the affable young musician from Mount Prospect who has become a national star through his success on this year's "Idol." Tickets would be available minutes after vote results are announced on "Idol" Wednesday night.

Although his schedule is still being finalized, DeWyze will probably start his day on the Fox TV program "Good Day Chicago" followed by stops at local radio stations and an AT&T store.

After that, DeWyze will head to Wrigley Field to throw out the first pitch at the 1:20 p.m. Cubs game against Pittsburgh.

From Wrigley, DeWyze will head to the Northwest suburbs for a private stop at a District 214 school that will not be open to the public before kicking off a parade at 4:30 p.m. along Northwest Highway between Route 83 and Central Road, Mount Prospect spokeswoman Maura El Metennani said.

Fans would be able to park in the Mount Prospect village hall parking deck at 50 S. Emerson St., commuter parking lots along the railroad tracks on Northwest Highway and Prospect Avenue, and designated on-street parking.

From there, it's over to the track, where DeWyze will perform three songs in an hourlong concert starting at about 6:30 p.m. Horse racing Friday will start at 1 p.m. instead of 3 p.m. and wrap up around 5:30 p.m. to accommodate the concert, said track spokesman Dave Zenner.

At the performance, Mount Prospect Mayor Irvana Wilks will present DeWyze with a key to the village, and Arlington Heights Village President Arlene Mulder will greet the crowd and welcome Lee, his family, friends and fans.

"We're really excited," Zenner said. "How often does someone from our area get this far in the show?"

The track holds about 30,000 people, Zenner said.

Entrance to the DeWyze show will be free, but fans must get tickets. They will be available on the Arlington Park website, arlingtonpark.com, minutes after DeWyze makes it past the next round Wednesday night.

Fans can also buy a $6 general-admission ticket to get into the park before those with free "Idol" tickets.

Parking at the track will be free, Zenner said.

"American Idol" hometown celebrations are given to the top three contestants on the show. Mount Prospect officials are still planning the details of the event, which attracts MTV, "Access Hollywood," People Magazine and anywhere from 5,000 to 20,000 fans.

"Idol" fans who can't wait until Friday can cheer on DeWyze tonight at several local locations. Hundreds of fans are expected to attend an "Idol" party at the Blues Bar, 2 W. Busse Road, and Capannari Ice Cream will host a party at St. Raymond's Catholic School gym, 300 S. Elmhurst Avenue in Mount Prospect. Fans also gather at the Fox and the Hound, 910 W. Dundee Road in Arlington Heights.

Party: Free tickets to Arlington show, or $6 to watch horse races first

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source: dailyherald.

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