Navy Pier is hosting a job fair on Tuesday as companies hope for a return to normal this summer

CHICAGO (CBS) — Hundreds of jobs are up for grabs tomorrow. They would be working on one of Chicago’s summer crown jewels: Navy Pier.

After tough times during the pandemic, Navy Pier is ready to get the fun times going again.

Fun, fireworks and food. They make every visit to Navy Pier a good one.

Chief Administrative and Equity Officer Arnaldo “Arnie” Rivera promises this and more as we head into the summer.

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

But first we need to take a look back to 2020, when the pandemic forced the pier to close for months.

It finally reopened last spring, but with only about 70% visitors compared to pre-COVID times.

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

Another challenge: attitude; both for Navy Pier itself and for its many shops.

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

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

  • America’s dog
  • Aramark
  • city ​​experiences
  • Totally crazy
  • Fifth Third Bank
  • Garret Popcorn
  • Giordanos
  • Harry Caray’s Tavern
  • Kilwins
  • write history
  • MC Donalds
  • Margaritaville
  • Navy Pier Store
  • offshore roof
  • Oh yes Chicago
  • stomach
  • Teapot Brew Bakery
  • The City Store
  • Tiny tavern
  • Virtual Rush: Chicago

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

Kilwin’s is looking to expand its staff to serve ice cream and sweets to the high season crowd. a total of about 20 to 25 digits.

“Part Time Full Time; we have cooking stations, chocolatier stations. So quite a lot of openings,” said Ira Fortner, Kilwin’s general manager.

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

They expect 2022 to be even bigger, so he’s looking for more employees to pull it off.

“We’re gearing up,” he said. “I’m looking 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 freshmen, first jobs. It’s a great place to go to to learn and experience what a job is about, what hard work is about,” Fortner said.

The Navy Pier job fair is Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. in the Grand Ballroom. If you wish to attend, be sure to bring several copies of a printed resume and prepare for an on-site interview.

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