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Update… Pitbull performs at Naperville’s Ribfest on July 5, followed by fireworks


Above / Pitbull, aka “Mr. Worldwide,” was featured at 2018 Ribfest on Thurs., July 5. (PN Photo)

UPDATE, July 6, 2018 / What energy and thoughtfulness were celebrated when gracious Pitbull performed his brand of music and dancing on the Navistar Main Stage for Ribfest 2018!

While attracting a mostly age-21-plus crowd in the tens of thousands, Pitbull offered many motivational words of wisdom to share with young people regarding hard work, technology and the woes of “likes” on social media—all of which were received with much applause and appreciation from the respectful audience.

Humble and grateful for his success at following the American Dream, here are a few of Pitbull’s upbeat messages:

“I’m taking all the negatives in my life, and turning them into a positive.”

“If you continue to work hard, let that be the fuel to your fire.”

“I don’t understand the word lose, I only understand the word learn.”

“Life is to live it, not to let it live you.”

PHOTO GALLERY / Click here for the PN photo gallery from Pitbull’s performance at Ribfest on July 5, 2018. 

UPDATE, July 5, 2018 / Stormy weather has resulted in evacuations and closing Knoch Park during the first two days of Ribfest 2018.

Currently, the Navistar Main Stage Concert featuring Pitbull is slated for 8:30 tonight, Thurs., July 5. Fireworks that were canceled last night will be displayed immediately following Pitbull’s performance, all weather permitting.

Thanks to Naperville public safety officials for helping communicate these challenging and disappointing weather-dependent decisions to assure that everyone celebrates safely.

According to local weather forecasts, July 6 and July 7 display all-clear signs with sunshine and cooler temperatures.

Rain or shine, know that your support of Ribfest makes a difference.  Since 1988, Exchange Club of Naperville has hosted Ribfest as a fundraiser for local agencies and organizations with a mission toward the elimination of domestic violence and child abuse in all forms. Through 2017, the Exchange Club of Naperville has donated over $16.5 million toward this goal, thanks to every sponsor, vendor, volunteer, festival goer, etc. Everyone’s generosity is appreciated.

UPDATE, May 31, 2018 / Early-bird pricing for Ribfest 2018 tickets ends at midnight, May 31, 2018. Check availability now for star-studded Navistar Main Stage Artists slated to perform July 4 though July 7.

Wed., July 4 – The Stray Cats & Guest Artist Melissa Etheridge with Independence Day Fireworks by Meijer®
Thurs., July 5 – Pitbull “Mr. Worldwide” 
Fri., July 6 – Jake Owen, Chris Janson & Jordan Davis 
Sat., July 7 – Steven Tyler & The Loving Mary Band 

According to Ribfest organizers, the only thing sold out is the Skybox on July 7. 

“Everything else is open,” said Mary Howenstine, Director of Marketing, for Exchange Club of Naperville’s Ribfest 2018.

For tickets, visit www.ribfest.net.

Also find everything you need to know about volunteering, carnival, Family Area, food and more at www.ribfest.net.

Original Post, April 3, 2018 /According to today’s news release, the Exchange Club of Naperville is yelling “Dale!”

Get set for 2018 Ribfest, July 4-7.

Exchange Club members again plan to host Naperville’s four-day Ribfest, thrilled to announce that internationally celebrated artist “Mr. Worldwide” Pitbull who often begins his songs with “Dale” or “Hit it!” will perform on the Navistar Main Stage at Ribfest on Thurs., July 5. 

“Pitbull’s performance at Naperville’s Ribfest is the final headliner announcement for 2018,” said Joel Carlsen, 2018 Ribfest Chair.  “It’s exciting to look at our lineup and see such amazing talent committed to playing each night of Ribfest.”

2018 Ribfest / July 4-July 7

Ribfest 2018 opens Wed.,  July 4 with guest artist Melissa Etheridge, the Stray Cats and a spectacular fireworks display sponsored by Meijer®.

The music festival, flavored with tastes of the best barbecue in the world and family entertainment, boasts Pitbull on Thurs., July 5, and country stars Jake Owen, Chris Janson and Jordan Davis on Fri., July 6.

Powerhouse rocker Steven Tyler and the Loving Mary Band close out the annual music festival on Sat., July 7. 


Photo by Randall Slavin

From Mr. 305 to Mr. Worldwide, Armando Christian Perez, aka Pitbull, rose from the streets of Miami to exemplify the American Dream and achieve international success. His relentless work ethic transformed him into a Grammy®-winning global superstar and business entrepreneur.

Along the way, he’s been the subject of specials for CNBC, CNN, CBS, NBC, ABC and more; he has made appearances on Empire, Shark Tank and Dancing with the Stars. His music has appeared in Men In Black III and The Penguins of Madagascar, and he even had a starring voiceover role in the animated 3D movie Epic.

In addition to the United States, his sold-out world concert tours have taken him to North and South America, Europe and the Far East. He has also completed headlining tours in China and Japan.

Pitbull ushered in 2018 with his fourth annual New Year’s Eve event at Bayfront Park in Miami, which was broadcast in-part on Univision, and capped off another stellar year that included the release of his tenth full-length album, Climate Change, a second co-headlining U.S. tour with Enrique Iglesias, the release of his first-ever Greatest Hits, and a new Spanish single.

Inspired by Education to Make It Right

Initially inspired to pursue his music dream by one of his high school teachers, Pitbull also understands the impact that education can make in one’s life. To spread that message and encourage quality education for children from all walks of life, he serves as an ambassador for SLAM!, the Sports Leadership Arts and Management charter schools he has helped to establish.

Launched in the Little Havana section of Miami where he spent some of his youth, the SLAM! model has now expanded to Las Vegas and West Palm Beach, Florida. Always striving to implement its mission to bring relevant experiences to its students, the SLAM! Foundation recently announced a new initiative: The first student-run national radio broadcast is planned to launch fall 2018 on SiriusXM.

On “Freedom,” Pitbull sums up everything: Went from a poor kid to a well-known all-around-the-globe world class citizen, man I paid all my dues and earned my stripes took all the wrong in my life and I made it right.

That is the dream, and Pitbull continually shows everybody it’s entirely possible. Dale!

Click here for a link to the website featuring Pitbull’s greatest and latest hits.

Ticket Choices

Tickets for Pitbull go on sale at 10AM Fri., April 6, through ribfest.net. Group sales and multi-day Ribfest packages will be available Thurs., April 5, also at 10AM.

Individual day tickets for guest artist Melissa Etheridge and The Stray Cats are on sale now as well as Jake Owen / Chris Janson / Jordan Davis, and Steven Tyler and the Loving Mary Band tickets.

There are a variety of ticket choices for Ribfest 2018.  For the concert lover, options include all Park General Access (which includes the Navistar Main Stage concerts and South Park), Standing Room Only, Skybox, VIP and various combination ticket packs. 

South Park Tickets

The South Park ticket option does not include access to the Navistar Main Stage music venue. South Park will feature local talent on the South Stage, and host the carnival, family area, and rib vendors, and offers a daily admission fee of $5 for ages 12 and older. 

Children 11 and under are free South Park General Admission every day.  On Independence Day, July 4, South Park admission is free after 5PM.  Veterans are admitted to the South Park for free all day on July Fourth. 

Ribfest Grand Sponsors

Ribfest returns July 4-7, 2018.

Current Ribfest 2018 Grand Sponsors are ABC7; Navistar; Meijer; Jewel-Osco; Naperville Bank & Trust, a Wintrust Community Bank…

Great Lakes Coca – Cola; Sunbelt Rentals; Medical Risk Services, Inc.; InnoDATAve Solutions; Nathan’s Famous Beef Franks; Coldwell Banker; The Real Estate Group; Guaranteed Rate; D & J Amusements; Miller Lite; and Euclid Beverage.

Visit ribfest.net and follow us at facebook.com/ribfestnaperville/ for all the up-to-date news.

Naperville’s Ribfest since 1988

Mission-driven and volunteer run, the Exchange of Naperville’s Ribfest is a premier Midwestern 4th of July concert series and celebration. In cooperation with its partners, the City of Naperville and the Naperville Park District, Ribfest, celebrating its 31th year, now draws more than 200,000 visitors annually.  Net proceeds from Ribfest directly support 50-plus agencies that work tirelessly to eliminate child abuse and domestic violence in all forms.  To date, Exchange has donated more than $16 million.

Agencies the Exchange Club supports include those who address daily challenges in the community:  hunger, families in crisis, homelessness, sexual assault, advocacy, housing, addiction, respite care for families of special need children, adult daycare, teen pregnancy support, to name just a few.  

The Edward Care Center, Loaves and Fishes Community Services, Families Helping Families, Little Friends, Inc., and Project HELP, a nonprofit organization established by the Club in 1992 that supports whole family and parenting health, are among those receiving allocations from Ribfest 2017 proceeds.

News release and photos submitted by Mary Howenstine, Director of Marketing, Exchange Club of Naperville’s Ribfest 2018.  


Editor’s Note / Kudos to 2018 Ribfest Chairman Joel Carlsen and the Entertainment Committee chaired by Bob Pschirrer for the attractive Ribfest lineup for July 4-7, now filled. Greg Walton, the service club’s contact to the music industry, deserves applause as well. Here’s to another four days of entertainment to benefit an important cause.


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PN Editor
PN Editor
An editor is someone who prepares content for publishing. It entered English, the American Language, via French. Its modern sense for newspapers has been around since about 1800.