The Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island (formerly known as FirstMerit Bank Pavilion) is an amphitheatre uniquely located on the man-made Peninsula of Northerly Island, Chicago, Illinois. The views from the venue are up there with the best, with Lake Michigan, Burnham Harbor, Soldier Field and the Chicago Skyline. These impressive views are joined by the summer sunsets and coastal wildlife.

The venue is a fairly new establishment opening its doors in 2005 with an initial concert by Earth, Wind & fire. The theatre initially comprised of three stands allowing a seating capacity of 3,666 seats with an admission area of 4,500 seats. In 2010 the venue organizers sought for an expansion. In 2013 the expansion was granted, increasing the seating capacity to 14,000 thousand. Including the introduction to a lawn area which doubles up as a park, with a slope to allow better viewing angles. This lawn area can accommodate 22,000. Another addition is the enhanced audio systems, outputting booming sounds from the centre stage to the crowds of onlookers.

Huntington Bank Pavilion

The upgraded venue was opened on in June 2013 by by Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefer Band. Since 2005 some there have been exciting performances, such as rock band Incubus, O.A.R. – Rain or Shine and traveling acoustic artist Jason Mraz.

Huntington Bank Pavilion at northerly island

Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island is an outdoor amphitheater venue located on the peninsula Northerly Island, in Chicago, Illinois. The venue is a temporary structure, with the summer concert season running from May or June until September or October. The amphitheater first opened in June 2005. It was previously named the FirstMerit Bank Pavilion, and before that the Charter One Pavilion.

Many past residents call the venue the “Venue with a View” as it has views of Lake Michigan, Burnham Harbor, Soldier Field, and the Chicago skyline. This makes it one of the most scenic places to go to enjoy live music all year round.

Amphitheatre History

The venue lies on the former site of Meigs Field. On March 30, 2003, Mayor Richard M. Daley ordered a midnight demolition of the airfield. The construction crew excavated six large X’s on the runway. Daley stated the continued operation of the airfield was a threat to Chicago’s cityscape, using the events of 9/11 as a reference. No one within state or city government were consulted on the demolition besides Daley. The Federal Aviation Administration fined the city $33,000, with an additional one million paid in grants.

In August 2003, construction crews were sent in to continue demolition of the airfield. Originally, the space was planned to become an aviation museum. Daley refuted the plan and proposed the space become a lakefront park and nature reserve. Within the allocated 91 acres, Northerly Island was born. Over four acres were set aside for the forthcoming music venue.

What’s It Like at Huntington Bank Pavilion

You can look to the reviews and see that Huntington Bank Pavilion is popular with event goers across the country. But what is it that makes it stand out?

First, many reviews will tell you that they recruit only the best staff. The team handling the various stations and amenities are there to provide professional, courteous, and welcoming assistance no matter what you need. Guests always feel like they’re welcome VIP guests or warm and expected visitors whenever they drop by.

The venue also has a history of excellent music and comedy shows all year round including upcoming shows by Barenaked Ladies and Dave Matthews Band and the Goo Goo Dolls just to name a few. And with the state of the art stage lighting and sound tech, you can feel close to the show whether you’re on the lawn or up close and personal in front of the stage.

Most importantly, it’s got a great location as its around the corner from the best attractions and sightseeing that Chicago has to offer. Definitely a five-star experience worth your time.