Two days of jazz, blues and BBQ come to Starved Rock Country for 2023

Popular Downtown La Salle street fests return

Update: This story has been revised to include the correct spelling of Hartauer Insurance Inc.

The return of two of La Salle’s most popular street festivals, BBQ-n-Blues and Jazz’N the Street, arrives Friday and Saturday, Sept. 8 and 9, at 600 First St. The pair of celebrations will bring food vendors and top-notch musical acts right to the heart of downtown La Salle.

The fun starts with BBQ-n-Blues, running from 4 to 10 p.m. Friday. The festival is one of the best evenings of curated live blues that Starved Rock Country has to offer. La Salle’s First Street will be taken over by four leading blues and blues-rock acts: the Lizzi Neal Band, Duke Tumatoe, Steve Cerqua & Crossroads and Toronzo Cannon.

Although the music is second to none, barbecue is really the core of Friday’s festivities. A panel of judges will sample the works of more than a dozen amateur barbecuers coming from all over Illinois. The rib cook-off will start at 7 a.m., and contestants will have until 6 p.m. to submit their slowly smoked masterpieces, with the cook-off winners being announced at 8 p.m.

There also will be a number of professional barbecue vendors, who are not competing in the event, along with other stands selling meals, drinks and snacks: Lil’ Bellas Pizza, La Salle VFW, The Dog House, 9th Street Pub, Haze Smokehouse, The Taylored Plate, Tropical Sno and The Perfectly Flawed Foundation.

Saturday’s festival takes a turn toward jazz. Jazz’N the Street, which entertains from 4 to 10 p.m., will feature a stacked lineup of nationally touring jazz talent and a beverage tent serving wine, craft beer and signature cocktails.

Main-stage acts include the Illinois Valley Community College Jazz Band, Ben & Kate, Sam Fazio and Tammi Savoy.

Saturday’s food vendors include Lil’ Bellas Pizza, La Salle VFW, The Dog House, 9th Street Pub, Haze Smokehouse, The Taylored Plate, Tropical Sno and The Perfectly Flawed Foundation. Domestic beer and seltzers, signature cocktails from Star Union Spirits and wine from August Hill Winery also will be available throughout the night.

Fireworks will close out the two-night event at 10 p.m. As with BBQ-n-Blues, Jazz’N the Street offers free admission and free parking. All ages are welcome, but pets will not be permitted on the festival grounds. The event is held rain or shine.

This two-day fest is made possible by Geneva Holdings, Hartauer Insurance Inc., La Salle State Bank, Inman Electric Motors, Carus, Hometown National Bank, Burgess Funeral Homes, Memory Lane Lounge, Illinois Cement Co., LaSalle Eastside Shell, Tieman Builders, Peru Federal Savings Bank, Ficek Electric & Communication Systems, Eureka Savings Bank, Cyclops Welding, Aplington Kaufman McClintock Steel & Barry, Bernabei Balestri & Fiocchi Law Offices, Burgess Funeral Home, Hurst Funeral Homes, JB Contracting, John Pohar & Sons, Koolmaster Co., La Salle Body & Fender, Machinery Maintenance, Sasso Jewelry & Gifts, Sherman’s Inc., State Farm Insurance – Cody Burroughs, Uptown Grill, Wayland Financial and Wilson Landscaping Co., Illinois Valley Building and Construction Trades Council, Illinois Valley Labor Management.

For more information on either festival, visit, and be sure to follow the La Salle Business Association on Facebook for more upcoming fests at