It’s summertime, and Chicagoans couldn’t be happier! The sun and heat have officially settled in, beach volleyball is in full swing, and urban gardens and farmers markets are bursting with fresh berries, tomatoes and preserves. The only downside might be the astronomically long lines at ice cream and frozen yogurt stores abound, but I think we can let it slide.
Get ready to break out your best neon glasses, tank tops and dance moves. This music festival draws people from all over the world to hear some of the top DJs play electronic dance music tracks all weekend long. Rock out to stars, such as Dillon Francis, Kaskade, deadmau5, Steve Aoki, and more! Make sure to mark June 10th-12th on your calendar, and purchase tickets in advance.
We all love taking our children to the zoo, but wouldn’t it also be great to have a night to revel with the animals, beers and wine, and live entertainment? Set your kids up with a babysitter for the evening of July 21st and head to Lincoln Park Zoo for a special, adult-only experience. Side note: this is a cash-bar event.
For family fun, head to Shedd Aquarium on Wednesdays from June 22nd-September 14th for an evening of Jazz music, cocktails and fireworks. Enjoy the animals and music, along with fireworks on the lake! This is a perfect setting for a birthday party, as well.
Run through Chicago’s sunny streets the weekend of July 17th at the Rock N’ Roll Half Marathon in Grant Park! There will also be a festival following, where runners, family and friends can celebrate in triumph together. Make sure to check out the fitness expo at McCormick Place beforehand and sample a few protein bars, purchase some accessories and get fired up for the run ahead!
Eat your heart out at the Taste of Randolph street festival from June 17th-19th. Enjoy performances by top musicians, bands and DJs, and taste innovative dishes from over twenty of Chicago’s best restaurants. The festival benefits the West Loop Community Organization, which helps grow local businesses and offer financial support.
It’s back! We’re excited—are you? The outrageous comedy has returned to The PrivateBank Theatre and will run from July 1st to August 14th. Make sure to purchase tickets in advance, as the show is incredibly popular! Hit up a delicious dinner nearby before the show starts. We recommend Atwood or State and Lake Tavern!
The premier outdoor food festival in Chicago, Taste of Chicago showcases over 33 restaurants, live entertainment, and three-course specials with top chefs for a VIP experience. Whether you want to eat by the food trucks, sip wine in the wine garden, or enjoy beer with your buddies in the beer hall, there’s a place for everyone. Enjoy great music on the Grant Park lawn and dance with your family and friends. There’s also a kids’ zone, for those who want some extra adult-time!
Celebrate Lollapalooza’s 25th year July 28th-31st weekend in Chicago’s Grant Park and take in great sounds from music legends. Expect music from Red Hot Chili Peppers, Ellie Goulding, Bloc Party, Radiohead, Alessia Cara, and more! Get your dance moves ready and your energy high, because this is surely one festival worth traveling to Chicago for!
Enjoy the fresh air and show August 20th-21st with blankets, lounge chairs, watermelon wedges and family-filled activities. Chicago’s skyline is the perfect backdrop to watch the planes soar high, and admission is open to everyone and free, on a first-come basis for camping spots. Alcohol, open grills, fireworks, kites, pop-up tents and pets are not allowed, but blankets, chairs and coolers are fair game!
From June 6th through August 25th, head to Millennium Park at 6:30pm for eighteen, free music shows on the Mondays and Thursdays of the week throughout summer. The musical series incorporates local, national and international stars that can appeal to all genres and preferences. Enjoy soft blues, DJ tunes, and even traditional African beats in Chicago’s beautiful, summer evenings. Note: July 4th and 7th will not feature any entertainment.
Between sunbathing, beach volleyball, swims in Lake Michigan, and outdoor festivals, there’s plenty of fun to be had on Chicago beaches this summer. Get outside and enjoy the sunshine and energy with fellow Chicagoans, who have waited months (and months!) for the warm weather to appear. Join in on a sports game or set up lounge chairs and coolers with the family. Whatever makes you happy!