Chicago Riverwalk kicks off 2017 season despite rain

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Saturday's rain didn't stop a daylong celebration at the Chicago Riverwalk as the newly expanded attraction kicked off its summer season.

Under the clouds on Saturday morning, the Riverwalk kicked off its 2017 season even as the rain dampened the turnout.

"I don't think there is as many people here as there might have been if the weather have been nicer but you can't control the weather," said Alma Lizcano.

"We are ready for it. We got our jacket. We got our umbrellas. It's Chicago," said Erica Gardunio.

All day Saturday the city offered a sample of what can be expected this season along the Riverwalk. The final portion of the walkway was finished last Fall and now stretches nine blocks. It goes from Lake Shore Drive west to Lake Street with action not only on the ground but also on the river.

"Five years ago this was a desolate spot; no one could imagine that this could be the new center of our city," said Commissioner Mark Kelly from Chicago's Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events

Adrian Colmenares just moved to Chicago and wanted to spend more time at the Riverwalk this afternoon, but the weather changed his plans.

"I was planning on going to one of those boat tours just to get to know the city, but as soon as I heard lightning outside of my window, it wasn't the best day," said Adrian Colmenares.

The Riverwalk season runs through October with a variety of programming.

"Hopefully by June we will have more heat, more warmth, less rain," said Chantia Kindle.
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