City Market, Brat Days to carry on despite expected heatwave

Local News

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — As we head into the final weeks of July, temperatures are set to rise higher than the Stateline area has felt since the summer of 2012.

The extreme heat will not stop two large traditions this weekend, as Rockford City Market and Alpine Kiwanis Brat Days are still happening…although some changes are being made to keep customers cool while they enjoy their summer fun.

“It’s always hot, but the extremeties of temperatures this year is something we have not experienced before,” said Co-Chair of Brat Days, Kathy Vigna.

Vigna has worked the Brat Days event in Rockford for decades, but this weekend the heat is forcing the group to prepare a bit differently.

One organizer said they may fire up the grills overnight, so the cooks aren’t in the fire during the hottest part of the day.

“They have ice water, bottles of water in front of them all the time,” Vigna said.

The Rockford City Market is also changing things up for Friday’s event.

“We will be moving any vendors that we can, inside the market hall,” said Manager Cathy McDermott. “The rest of the vendors will be under the pavilion, so they will have a little bit more shade and opportunity to stay cooler out there.”

Even with being inside, some vendors have already decided they don’t want to deal with the heat and are staying home.

“We decided to make an exception, with the extreme heat this weekend,” said McDermott. “We have had some of our food trucks and food vendors decide not to come.”

There are air-conditioned areas close by for both events, and organizers will be keeping a close eye on their customers.

“Customers that come through, who want to partake in that entertainment, we’ve got an eating tent and we do have people assigned to work in there, so we’ll be watching those folks as well,” Vigna said.

Neither event will employ misting tents this weekend because the devices were already rented out, organizers say.

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