Downtown Festival Districts

Map showing boundaries of Downtown Festival District for Friday Night Live 2024

Map 1 – Friday Night Live Downtown Festival District

A Downtown Festival District allows customers of participating downtown restaurants and bars to purchase and take open containers of alcohol from the licensed premises and consume the beverage in the public right-of-way located within a designated area and limited timeframe. Alcohol must be purchased from a participating downtown business (no bring your own beverage), which will give the patron a City-branded wristband and cup from which the individual can consume their purchased alcoholic beverage in the public right-of-way. More information below in the frequently asked questions section.

Declared Events

Two Downtown Festival Districts have been designated for multiple dates in 2024. One will be held throughout Downtown Champaign in conjunction with Friday Night Live. A second will be held late night on a closed section of Market Street.

Friday Night Live Downtown Festival District

The area displayed in Map 1 has been designated a Downtown Festival District from 5:00-9:00 pm on these 2024 dates:

May 31, June 7, June 14, June 21, June 28, July 5, July 12, July 19, July 26, August 2, August 9, August 16, August 23, August 30, and September 6, 2024.

Map of Downtown Festival District for Taylor Street

Map 2 – Market Street Late Night Downtown Festival District

Market Street Late Night Downtown Festival District

The area displayed in Map 2 has been designated a Downtown Festival District on Friday and Saturday nights from 9:00 pm – 1:00 am on these 2024 dates:

May 31, June 1, June 7, June 8, June 14, June 15, June 21, June 22, June 28, June 29, July 5, July 6, July 12, July 13, July 19, July 20, July 26, July 27, August 2, August 3, August 9, August 10, August 16, August 17, August 23, August 24, August 30, August 31, September 6, September 7, September 13, September 14, September 20, September 21, September 27, September 28, October 4, October 5, October 11, October 12, October 18, and October 19, 2024.

Designated Areas

The designated boundary area of the two declared Downtown Festival Districts are shown in the maps on this page. Click an image to enlarge the map, or use the links below to download copies of the maps.

City Regulations

To learn more about City regulations concerning Downtown Festival Districts, please review City Code section 5-62.2 and Rule 26 in the Rules of the Local Liquor Commissioner.


Frequently Asked Questions

Guest Questions

Participants can only carry or consume alcoholic beverages on public property when a Downtown Festival District has been designated. Carrying an open container or consuming alcohol on public property at any other time is prohibited.

The boundaries of a Downtown Festival District can vary but will generally include the core business area of Downtown Champaign, including the area around participating bars and restaurants. Specific boundaries will be established and promoted on this website for each specific event. At the time of the event, signs will also be conspicuously posted around the perimeter of the Downtown Festival District to provide a visual reminder of the boundaries to those participating.

No, you cannot bring your own alcohol into the Downtown Festival District. All alcoholic beverages being consumed on public property in a Downtown Festival District must be purchased from a licensed bar or restaurant within the Festival District. Downtown establishments that sell liquor are not required to participate or to allow alcohol to be taken from their premises.

Downtown liquor establishments that have chosen to participate in the Festival District must provide a wristband to anyone who purchases an alcoholic beverage for consumption on public property. The wristband is a visual way to confirm the individual consuming alcohol in public is of legal drinking age and that they purchased the beverage from a participating establishment within the Downtown Festival District.

Downtown establishments that sell liquor are not required to participate or to allow alcohol to be taken from their premises. Downtown restaurants and bars that have chosen to participate must follow certain additional rules, including issuing wristbands and serving “to-go” alcoholic beverages in paper or plastic cups.

No. Consumption of alcohol in any City-owned parking lot or parking deck is prohibited and outside the boundaries of the Downtown Festival District.

Champaign police officers and other security personnel will patrol the Downtown Festival District and surrounding areas to ensure that participants are following the rules and acting in a responsible manner. Police will provide reminders and guidance for those who appear unsure of the rules or the boundaries of the Downtown Festival District. Liquor establishments participating in the Downtown Festival District are also required to follow and enforce liquor rules as required by City Code.

To protect the public from hazards associated with broken glass, alcoholic beverages carried or consumed in public within the Festival District must be in a plastic or paper container.


Liquor Licensee Questions

In general, Class A, R, and RT licensees located within the designated Downtown Festival District are eligible to participate and sell alcohol for consumption within the Downtown Festival District. Licensees must first submit an application to the Liquor Commissioner. For specifics rules and regulations licensees should review Rule 26 in the Rules of the Local Liquor Commissioner.

No, licensees are not required to sell alcohol for public consumption in the Downtown Festival District. Participation is voluntary.

Yes, eligible licensees must submit an application to the Liquor Commissioner, but for 2024 the application fee is waived. The application is only for the duration of specific Downtown Festival District dates as designated by the Liquor Commissioner. Participating licensees must apply to participate in each Downtown Festival District date.

Yes.  Alcoholic beverages sold for public consumption in the Festival District MUST be served in plastic cups provided by the City.  No glass, bottles, or aluminum containers are permitted in the Downtown Festival District.

In addition to the Liquor Ordinance that all licensees are required to follow, licensees must also abide by all the Rules of the Local Liquor Commissioner. Licensees should carefully review Rule 26, which pertains to Downtown Festival Districts.

Wristbands are provided by the City to licensees who choose to participate in the Downtown Festival Districts. Wristbands are used to verify the wearer is of legal drinking age and that the individual purchased their alcoholic beverage within the Downtown Festival District. Wristbands will help both licensed establishments and law enforcement.

No. Wristbands are provided to participating licensees free of charge. A licensee may not charge a customer a fee, directly or indirectly, for a Downtown Festival District wristband.