Big Chicken, the star-powered fast casual restaurant brand founded by Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal, announced the opening of its newest venue location at Wintrust Arena located on the McCormick Place campus.

The location officially launched with a grand opening on June 8, just before the Chicago Sky took on the Atlanta Dream with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Big Chicken’s concession location near section 116.

Big Chicken is continuing its expansion into high-profile arenas across the country and internationally through its partnership with Oak View Group (OVG), the largest builder of new arenas in the world. The group recently opened Big Chicken’s first international location at OVG’s newest world-class venue, Co-op Live, in Manchester, United Kingdom. Now, Big Chicken in Wintrust Arena will be joining several other OVG properties, including Chicagoland’s SeatGeek Stadium, ASU’s Mullett Arena, Arizona’s Footprint Center, New York’s UBS Arena, Moody Center in Austin, Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena and Palm Spring’s Acrisure Arena. 

“There’s no doubt that Big Chicken will be a game changer for fans with BIG appetites at Wintrust Arena,” said Josh Halpern, CEO of Big Chicken. “Thanks to our incredible partnership with Oak View Group, we’ve been able to captivate crowds of fans in Chicagoland at SeatGeek Stadium, and now Wintrust Arena as well. We partnered with Chicago’s iconic doughnut shop to create a one-of-a-kind sandwich for our debut in the city almost a year ago in Rosemont, and plan to continue to engrain ourselves into the local restaurant scene with a new location coming to Arlington Heights next year.” 

Big Chicken’s newest location in Wintrust Arena joins the existing Chicagoland locations in Rosemont and SeatGeek Stadium. Offerings at the arena location include The Original Big Chicken (Big Chicken Sauce, chicken breast and B&B Pickles), Uncle Jerome’s Nashville Hot (Nashville hot chicken, mayo and pickles), tenders and more concession items. In addition to DePaul University Men’s and Women’s Basketball, Wintrust Arena also serves as the home court for the Chicago Sky, 2021 WNBA Champions. The arena also serves as a dynamic, multi-purpose arena that frequently hosts tens of thousands of visitors for general sessions, business meetings, concerts and other special events.

“Adding Big Chicken at Wintrust Arena is a slam dunk and promises to further enhance the game day experience for Chicago Sky and WNBA fans,” added Ken Gaber, President of OVG Hospitality, the food and beverage division of Oak View Group. “The restaurant brings a taste of Shaq’s larger-than-life personality to the arena, providing fans with an outstanding dining option that complements the thrilling basketball action. The success of Big Chicken at our other Oak View Group properties speaks volumes about its appeal, and we’re confident all visitors to Wintrust Arena will enjoy these delicious offerings.”

In addition to becoming a staple in U.S. arenas, Big Chicken currently has 30-plus traditional and non-traditional locations open and more than 350 in development worldwide.

Emerging Concepts, Fast Casual, Growth, News, Big Chicken