Remember a few years ago, when the East Side was lousy with empty bars, empty buildings, and gone-out-of-business businesses? Yeah, it’s not really like that anymore. If you needed proof, this past Saturday’s Summer Soulstice Music Festival should have done the trick. Yes, the East Side was alive with pleasant weather, a festive and diverse crowd, terrific music, great food (though it should be said that the best festival food is always the $5 church/Legion burger), and an overall sense of rejuvenation. Gone were (most of) the For Lease signs; in were Hacienda Beer Co., Crossroads Collective, Izzy Hops, Kawa Ramen and Sushi, Merge, Black Cat Alley, that secret Shanghai bar, and plenty of North Avenue stalwarts. It was kind of great!

Want to see the action for yourself? Enjoy these photos, and scoff at a certain website that once thought the East Side was dying. (All photos courtesy of Tayler Photography unless otherwise noted.)

Photo: Matt Wild

Photo: Matt Wild

Photo: Matt Wild

Photo: Matt Wild

Photo: Matt Wild

Photo: Matt Wild

Photo: Matt Wild

Photo: Matt Wild

Photo: Matt Wild

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