Chicago is undoubtedly the best city to be in the summer! From an endless amount of food festivals, free concerts and movies, to fun outdoor activities – there is something for everyone to enjoy! Here are my top Chicago summer events I’m looking forward too.
Cezanne Exhibit at the Art Institute, Now until Sept. 5
- The Art Institute of Chicago has teamed up with London’s Tate Modern to showcase the first major retrospective of Paul Cezanne’s work in more than 25 years! Visitors will be able to see Cezanne’s most iconic artwork, as well as a total of 90 oil paintings, 40 watercolors and drawings, and 2 complete sketchbooks.
- Cezanne Exhibit Event + Admission Info
Jazzin’ at the Shedd, June 15 – Aug. 31
- As the sun goes down, and the music turns up, grab a drink on the Shedd’s terrace with unbeatable skyline views or head inside to experience the unbelievable animals. This year will be featuring a lineup of Chicago’s top jazz ensembles, and members will receive discounted admission.
- Jazzin’ at the Shedd Event + Admission Info
Grant Park Music Festival, June 15 – Aug. 20
- This is the place to be for classical music lovers who enjoy show-stopping views of Chicago’s skyline. This year’s performances range from world premiere works of symphonies by Mozart, Haydn, and Shostakovich to classic Broadway pieces.
- Grant Park Music Festival Event + Admission Info
Chicago Pride Fest, June 18 – 19
- Pride Fest is a Chicago favorite. This year the fest is bring two days of music, drag, vendors, and LGBTQ-friendly events to Northalsted. There will also be arts and crafts from more than 150 vendors… and even a Pet Pride Parade at noon on Saturday!
- Chicago Pride Fest Event + Admission Info
Millennium Park Summer Music Series, June 20 – Aug. 18
- Every Monday and Thursday of this summer, Pritzker Pavilion will be hosting their 10-part music series, showcasing a wide range of music. From saxophonist Femi Kuti and elctronic artist HAT to Ukrainian folk-fusion quartet DakhaBrakha, there will be something for everyone to enjoy!
- Millennium Park Summer Music Series Event + Admission Info
Logan Square Arts Festival, June 24 – 26
- The Logan Square Arts Festival is a three-day celebration of diversity in Logan Square! After a two year hiatus, the festival is finally returning with two stages of live music, food and drinks, and a new focus on creating a one-of-a-kind experience in one of the most iconic green spaces in Chicago!
- Logan Square Arts Festival Event + Admission Info
Movies at Gallagher Way, Now until Sept. 21
- Gallagher Way, a plaza adjacent to Wrigley Field, is teaming up wit the Music Box Theatre to put on free outdoor movie screenings this summer. Admission is free, and everyone is welcome to bring their own food or enjoy on-site concessions. The list of movies has something for everyone!
- Movies at Gallagher Way Event + Admission Info
Taste of Chicago, July 8 – 10
- Taste of Chicago will finally be returning this year with food and music events in 3 Chicago neighborhoods! Taste of Chicago is the world’s largest free-admission outdoor food festival. Each year dozens of Chicago specialties to international cuisine participate, including food trucks and pop-ups. Enjoy great food and performances from local bands and dance companies!
- Taste of Chicago
West Fest Chicago, July 8 – 10
- A favorite of mine, West Fest has been one of Chicago’s most prominent and well-attended street festivals since 2004. Entirely planned and produced by the West Town Chamber of Commerce, the emphasis is on neighborhood retailers, restaurants, fine artists, crafters, food trucks, and more!
- West Fest Event + Admission Info
Bucktown Neighborhood and Garden Walk, July 9-10
- Returning for it’s 18th year, neighbors and visitors of all ages can explore hidden gems together throughout Bucktown! For one special weekend, Bucktown residents open their personal spaces and exclusive gardens to the public to showcase the neighborhood. There will also be live musicians as well as street artists throughout the gardens. A trolley will also allow for easy transportation, and several restaurants will serve as meeting points with live music for all attendees!
- Bucktown Neighborhood and Garden Walk Event + Admission Info
Wicker Park Fest, July 22 – 24
- Known as “Chicago’s Best Street Festival of the Summer” by the Chicago Tribune, Wicker Park Fest attracts visitors across Chicagoland and the country with it’s incredible music line-up! This festival celebrates Wicker Park’s eclectic music, great local food, arts and crafts, and retail vendors.
- Wick Park Fest Event + Admission Info
Chicago Air and Water Show, Aug. 20 – 21
- A Chicago favorite, this spectacular air and water show draws over two million to Chicago’s beachfront each year. Come watch military and pilots perform astonishing stunts right above Lake Michigan!
- Chicago Air and Water Show
With something for everyone to enjoy, I hope you and your friends and family have a wonderful summer!