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Navy Pier hosts job fair on Tuesday as businesses hope for a return to normal this summer

CHICAGO (SCS) — Hundreds of jobs are up for grabs tomorrow. You’d be working at a crown jewel of summer in Chicago: Navy Pier.

After tough times during the pandemic, Navy Pier is ready to let the fun times roll again.

Fun, fireworks and food. This is what makes any visit to Navy Pier a good one.

Arnaldo “Arnie” Rivera, Director of Administration and Equity, promises that and more ahead of the summer.

“We are excited about the possibilities of 2022,” he said.

But first, we have to go back to 2020, when the pandemic forced the pier to close for months.

Last spring it finally reopened, but only with around 70% attendance compared to pre-COVID times.

Rivera said the biggest challenge this summer will be trying to perform at 100% capacity “knowing that we’re still recovering like everyone else.”

Another challenge: hiring; both for Navy Pier itself and for its many businesses.

To fill the hundreds of vacancies, Navy Pier is hosting a job fair on Tuesday, both for full-time and seasonal jobs.

In addition to jobs working for Navy Pier itself, companies hiring this year include:

  • American dog
  • Aramark
  • City experiences
  • Completely Nuts
  • Fifth Third Bank
  • Garrett Popcorn
  • by Giordano
  • Harry Caray’s Tavern
  • by Kilwin
  • make history
  • McDonald’s
  • Margaritaville
  • Navy Pier Store
  • roof at sea
  • Oh yes Chicago
  • Belly
  • Brewery Bakery Teapot
  • The city store
  • Little Tavern
  • Virtual Rush: Chicago

“There’s no better place to work than the pier, especially during the summer,” Rivera said.

Kilwin’s is looking to bolster its staff to serve ice cream and sweets to peak season crowds; about 20 to 25 positions in total.

“Part-time, full-time; we have cook positions, chocolate maker positions. So quite a few openings,” Kilwin general manager Ira Fortner said.

Kilwin’s opened at Navy Pier last May during the pandemic, and Fortner said they were still having a mild summer.

They expect 2022 to be even bigger, so he is looking for more employees to succeed.

“We are ramping up,” he said. “I look forward to a busy season.”

Is it difficult to find the right people?

“A lot of people didn’t work during COVID. A lot of people didn’t want to come back. A lot of people found another career. What’s good about our business is that we have a lot of students for the first time, It’s a great place to learn and find out what a job is, what hard work is,” Fortner said.

The Navy Pier Career Fair runs from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Grand Ballroom. If you plan to attend, be sure to bring several copies of a printed resume and be prepared for an onsite interview.

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