The Greater Chicago Jewish Festival is produced by the Jewish Production Organization for Cultural Events and Theater (P.O.C.E.T.), a non-profit corporation. The Jewish P.O.C.E.T. is a production group comprised of professionals in the fields of art, music, theater, dance, radio, television, communications, community relations, education, engineering, finance, law and technology. They volunteer their time and expertise in planning and producing large scale events for the Jewish community. In addition to having diverse professions, they represent the full spectrum of Jewish diversity united by a common goal.
The outdoor showcase includes seven hours of continuous entertainment on four stages: two main stages for musical entertainment and a stage for dance groups, theater groups and storytelling. In addition, the festival includes a children's stage, a hands-on activity area, an art fair, a craft fair, an ethnic food fair and organization fair.
The Festival was first produced in 1980 and despite bad weather which forced us indoors, more than 6,000 people attended.
Subsequent Festivals (held in 1981, 1983, 1986, 1988, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1998, 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2008, 2010 2012, 2014) were overwhelmingly successful. Attendance grew from 18,000 in 1983 to over 40,000 and this year we celebrate our 30th Anniversary with great expectations and fond memories. The Greater Chicago Jewish Festival is one of the largest and longest running Jewish festivals in the United States and the largest Jewish event in the Chicago area. Many other Jewish communities have been inspired by the Greater Chicago Jewish Folk Arts Festival and have come to meet with us in an effort to emulate our concept,
Since 1980, the Greater Chicago Jewish Festival has created just that experience for hundreds of thousands. Today, it is the largest Jewish cultural event in Chicago and the largest ongoing Jewish festival in America. We call it the Heart and Soul of Jewish Chicago because on this one special day, you can find everything that is Jewish in Chicago. We create our own "town square" filled with the sights, sounds and smells of a dynamic and creative community. The Festival is a community event, not a commercial event.
The Jewish POCET is very proud that people come from all over the United States, as well as from Canada and Israel, to see the Festival, sell at the Festival and perform at the Festival. We are also gratified that every aspect of our community is represented in some way.
- Michael Lorge , Founder
P.O. Box 5215, Skokie, IL 60076
The Jewish P.O.C.E.T. (Production Organization for Cultural Events and Theater) is a not-for-profit organization committed to developing and producing quality Jewish art, music and theater events in the Chicago area.