The River North neighborhood is getting into the street-festival racket with the inaugural Taste of River North, this Saturday and Sunday in Erie Park at Kingsbury and Erie. The fest opens at noon both days and presents music on one stage. Headlining Saturday at 8:30 PM is the Occidental Brothers Dance Band International, a local highlife band whose lineup includes two members of Ghana’s celebrated Western Diamonds; Reader critic Peter Margasak describes the OBDBI as a “strong live act that can get all sorts of crowds on their feet.” Also on Saturday’s bill are bluesman Dave Herrero, Talking Heads tribute band This Must Be the Band, Pipe Dream, and the Chris Greene Quartet. Headlining Sunday at 5:30 PM is seasoned alt-rock outfit Cracker, still plugging along as its platinum-selling 1993 album Kerosene Hat recedes in the rearview; the band is touring in support of the recent Sunrise in the Land of Milk and Honey (429). Also on Sunday’s bill are Red Wanting Blue, the Jesse White Tumbling Team, Alex & the All-Stars, and the kids’ show Super Stolie & the Rockstars. Other festival attractions include art from local galleries, food from neighborhood restaurants (Ai Japanese, Sullivan’s, La Madia), and a family fun and pet area with arts and crafts, face painting, a pet obstacle course, and handcrafted pet portraits. Admission is a $5 suggested donation. For more info see Fairs & Festivals listings by day, call 312-235-2617, or visit