The Chicago Scene Boat Party, a shindig "consistently voted the wettest and wildest event of the summer" according to its organizers, had better hope they didn't invest to much in printing banners and flyers for this year's edition as they've moved their raucous event some 10 miles south in response to the city's call for them to secure proper permits, insurance and security.
The party's move to the marina near Hammond, Ind., announced Friday, was rumored after Crain's Chicago Business reported earlier this week that the July 30 party was in jeopardy of being shut down unless they complied with city regulations for large events. Reportedly, the party came to the attention of city officials last year when marine police ticketed participants for displaying sponsors' billboards on their boats, potentially distracting drivers on the nearby Lake Shore Drive.
Party organizer Ted Widen, however, contended that city police simply do not want to deal with monitoring the traditionally raucous event. Further, he noted, the event had been held for some 10 years in Chicago "and [they have] never had to fill out a form," as Widen told Crain's. He described the city's ticketing of boats adorned with sponsors' billboards as "ridiculous."
The party, prior to its move, was expected to attract at least 600 boats filled with some 5,000 revelers to the "play pen" just off the Chicago Avenue Beach. The party's (somewhat not-safe-for-work) website also proclaimed that organizers are aiming to best a Guinness World Record for the largest tie-up of boats -- 1,650 -- with this year's edition. It appears unclear whether all those boaters will now be down for their longer party commute.
Unsure what all the hubbub's about? In honor of the upcoming holiday weekend, check out a super hip, bikini-intensive highlight reel (soundtracked by that unforgettable "Oh Yeah" song best known from "Ferris Bueller's Day Off") from last year's festivities. (Hat tip to Chicagoist for making this gem's existence known to us.)