How these listings work

We include mostly city events, with a few suburban highlights. One-of-a-kind events are listed by date. Unchanging summer-long events are listed each month by their first date. They are color-coded green for easy skimming. Many events start on Friday or Saturday and continue through the weekend, but we only list them opening day.

MON/1
Chicago Park District’s Movies in the Parks
Through Sep 14. 195 screenings in 150 city parks. Films begin at dusk. For a full schedule and locations, call (312)742-1134 or visit chicagoparkdistrict.com. Free.

Downtown Sound: Lee Fields & the Expressions + Theo Huff and the Platinum Band
Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park near the corner of Michigan and Randolph, (312)742-1168. 6:30pm. Free.

TUE/2
Rush Hour Concerts: Rush Hour Fusion
Jason Seed Stringtet with Yang Wei, pipa. St. James Cathedral, 65 East Huron. 5:15pm, reception with artists, 5:45pm, half-hour concert. Free. rushhour.org

Streeterville Farmer’s Market
Through October 29. European-style outdoor market. Museum of Contemporary Art Plaza, 220 East Chicago. 7am-3pm. Free.

Tuesdays on the Terrace: Eastern Block
Live jazz on the MCA’s garden lawn plus Summer Studios art making for families. Lawn chairs available for rental for $5. Hotdogs and burgers from the grill, and locally grown cuisine from the MCA Farmer’s Market. Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 East Chicago. 5:30pm-8pm, (312)397-4034 for dinner reservations. $25 dinner buffet. Free to attend.

WED/3
Grant Park Music Festival: Independence Eve Celebration
This musical celebration of America features a selection of traditional music. Christopher Bell, conductor; Janai Brugger, soprano. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph. 6:30pm. Free.

Green City Market
Outdoors every Wednesday and Saturday through Oct 26. Shop where the chefs do at this organic, local, sustainable-production-focused market. Located at the south end of Lincoln Park between Clark and Stockton, (approximately 1790 N. Clark), (773)880-1266. 7am-1pm. Free.

Second City’s Old Town Neighborhood Tour
Sundays at 10:30am and Wednesdays at 4pm through Oct 30. This walking tour both entertains and informs by highlighting the architecture, history and development of Old Town as well as various Second City alumni haunts and the stories that go with them. Tour begins at the Second City Theatre, 1616 North Wells, (312)337-3992. $15.

THU/4
African Caribbean Festival of Life
July 4-7. Reggae, soul, blues and gospel entertainers perform at this festival of food, music, arts and crafts, moving to the Near West Side for its 21st rendition. Union Park, 1501 West Randolph (312)427-0266. $15, festival pass, $40. martinsinterculture.com

Chicago SummerDance Festival
Thursdays-Sundays, Through Sep 15. An hour of dance lessons led by professional instructors followed by live music and dancing. Spirit of Music Garden in Grant Park, 601 South Michigan, (312)742-4007. 6pm-9:30pm; Sunday 4pm-7pm. Free.

Live Lit on the Lake
Thursdays and Fridays at 9:30pm through August 9. Write Club’s Ian Belknap hosts a rotating lineup of Chicago’s literary all-stars. Theater on the Lake, 2401 North Lake Shore, (312)742-7994. Free.

Loops and Variations: ICE + Nosaj Thing
New music meets electronica. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph, (312)742-1168. 6:30pm. Free. 

Low-Line Market
Through Oct 17. A new market offering goods from local and regional farmers, sweets merchants and bread sellers, as well as ready-to-eat stuffs, taking place every Thursday at the auxiliary exit of the CTA Brown Line Southport Station. 4pm-8pm till Sep 5, then 4pm-7pm thereafter. lowlinemarket.com

FRI/5
Chicago Tribune North Michigan Avenue Art Festival
July 5-7. Pioneer Court on Michigan next to the Tribune Tower, alongside the Chicago River. Friday and Saturday, 10am-6pm, Sunday, 10am-5pm. Free.

Grant Park Music Festival: Dvorák’s New World Symphony
July 5-6. Eugene Tzigane, guest conductor; Alessio Bax, piano. Also featuring Bolcom: Ragomania, “A Classic Festival Overture” and Barber: Piano Concerto. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph. 6:30pm Friday, 7:30pm Saturday. Free.

Pedal Oak Park
Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday morning at 9:30am through Sep. 29. Experience all twenty-two of Oak Park’s Frank Lloyd Wright-designed buildings on this two hour bicycle tour. Bring your own bike, or one will be provided for you at no additional charge. Greenline Wheels, 105 South Marion. GoWright.org. $35 for non-members. $30 for Preservation Trust members.

Wavefront Beachside Music Festival
July 5-7. Electronic music festival with four stages and a hundred acts including Mark Farina, Justice and Diplo. Montrose Beach, Montrose and Lake Shore. Single-day tickets $69.99, three-day pass $189.99. wavefrontmusicfestival.com.

SAT/6
The Chosen Few Old School Reunion Picnic
What started as a little get-together among house heads now attracts 30,000 fans to one of the largest house music festivals in the world. Chosen Few DJs Wayne Williams, Jesse Saunders, Alan King, Andre Hatchett, Tony Hatchett, Terry Hunter and Mike Dunn, along with many special guests. Jackson Park, 63rd and Hayes Drive. 7am-8pm. Advance tickets $15; various VIP and tent packages. chosenfewdjs.com

Millennium Park Workouts
Saturday mornings through Sep. 7. Start your weekend with free 45-minute exercise classes from the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs. Tai Chi at 7am, Yoga at 8am, Pilates at 9am and Zumba at 10am. Great Lawn, Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph, (312)742-1168. Free.

Tour of Bridgeport and Armour Square
Architectural and historic bike tour of Chicago’s neighborhoods, led by Lee Diamond. 11am. $10. bigshouldersrealty.com

MON/8
Downtown Sound: Dawes + The Cairo Gang
Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park near the corner of Michigan and Randolph, (312)742-1168. 6:30pm. Free.

TUE/9
Family Fun Festival
Every day July 9 through Sep. 2. Pop into the Family Fun Tent to entertain kids of all ages, with Wiggleworms music lessons from the Old Town School of Folk Music each day at 10am, a daily reading circle at 11am and concerts at 1pm, plus crafts and educational activities throughout the day. Chase Promenade North, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph. 10am-3pm. Free.

Rush Hour Concerts: Poetry and the String Quartet
Euclid String Quartet. St. James Cathedral, 65 East Huron. 5:15pm, reception with artists, 5:45pm, half-hour concert. Free. rushhour.org

Tuesdays on the Terrace: Fred Lonberg-Holm
Live jazz on the MCA’s garden lawn plus Summer Studios art making for families. Lawn chairs available for rental for $5. Hotdogs and burgers from the grill, and locally grown cuisine from the MCA Farmer’s Market. Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 East Chicago. 5:30pm-8pm, (312)397-4034 for dinner reservations. $24 dinner buffet. Free to attend.

WED/10
Grant Park Music Festival: Grant Park Pops: Let’s Dance
Jeff Tyzik conducts a selection of favorite dance melodies. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph. 8pm. Free.

Taste of Chicago
July 10-July 14. Sample food along the lakefront while enjoying music from the likes of Robert Plant, Jill Scott at the world’s largest outdoor food festival. Grant Park. 11am-9pm. Free to attend, but food and concerts cost.

Theater on the Lake: There Is A Happiness That Morning Is by Theatre Oobleck
Through July 14. 2401 North Lake Shore, (312)742-7994. Wednesday-Saturday 7:30 pm, Sunday 6:30pm. $18.

THU/11
Loops and Variations: Dan Deacon + Friends of the Gamelan
New music meets electronica. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph, (312)742-1168. 8pm. Free.

FRI/12
Grant Park Music Festival: Caminos del Inka 
July 12-13. A musical journey through South America in the form of a multimedia tribute to the vast empire of the Incas and the ancient melodies of the Inca Trail. Miguel Harth-Bedoya, guest conductor; Mary Stolper, flute; Walter Haman, cello. Works include Robles: El Cóndor Pasa, Martínez y Compañón: Colección de Música Virreinal, Luzuriaga: Responsorio, Lena Frank: Illapa, Tone Poem for Flute and Orchestra, Golijov: Mariel, for Cello and Orchestra, Soro: Danza Fantástica and López: Fiesta! Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph. 8pm. Free.

Square Roots Chicago
July 12-14. Old Town School of Music’s summer festival featuring original music in the alt-country, americana, indie rock, world music, soul and kids genres. Lincoln Avenue, between Montrose and Wilson, (773)728-3890. squareroots.org

SAT/13
Skokie Art Guild 52nd Annual Art Fair
July 13-14. Original art, including watercolors, oils, sculpture, photography, drawing, ceramics, pottery, and jewelry. Village Green, 5211 West Oakton, Skokie, 10am-5pm. Free admission and parking. skokieartguild.org 

Tour de Fat: Chicago
A bicycle celebration and parade. The bike parade begins at 11am at Palmer Square, but be there early to register. Stay after for beer, music and theatrics. Palmer Square, near the corner of North Kedzie and West Palmer. 10am-5pm. Free.

West Fest
July 13-14. Music-oriented neighborhood festival with exploding attendance features the usual assortment of shops, food and beer, with two music stages—a rock stage programmed by Empty Bottle (Saturday night’s headliner is Tortoise) and a house-music oriented stage with the likes of Derrick Carter and SuperJane. Chicago Avenue between Damen and Wood. Noon-10pm. $5.

MON/15
Downtown Sound: Fatoumata Diawara + Alasdair Roberts and Friends
Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park near the corner of Michigan and Randolph, (312)742-1168. 6:30pm. Free.

TUE/16
Rush Hour Concerts: Antonín Dvorák: “Slavonic Dances,” Op. 46
Joan DeVee Dixon, piano; Alice Fiedlerová, piano. St. James Cathedral, 65 East Huron. 5:15pm, reception with artists, 5:45pm, half-hour concert. Free. rushhour.org

Tuesdays on the Terrace: Fred Longberg-Holm
Live jazz on the MCA’s garden lawn plus Summer Studios art making for families. Lawn chairs available for rental for $5. Hotdogs and burgers from the grill, and locally grown cuisine from the MCA Farmer’s Market. Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 East Chicago. 5:30pm-8pm, (312)397-4034 for dinner reservations. $25 dinner buffet. Free to attend.

WED/17
Theater on the Lake: That’s Weird, Grandma by Barrel of Monkeys
Through July 21. 2401 North Lake Shore, (312)742-7994. Wednesday-Saturday 7:30 pm, Sunday 6:30pm. $18.

Grant Park Music Festival: A Rodgers and Hammerstein Celebration
Grant Park Orchestra And Chorus, Christopher Bell, conductor; Rebecca Luker, soprano; Doug LaBrecque, tenor;
William Michals, baritone. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph. 6:30pm. Free.

THU/18
Loops and Variations: Olafur Arnalds + Sarah Neufeld
New music meets electronica. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph, (312)742-1168. 6:30pm. Free.

FRI/19
Taste of River North
July 19-21. River North cuisine, art, music, shopping and music. Ward Park, 630 North Kingsbury (Kingsbury and Erie), (312)633-2600.

Grant Park Music Festival: Saint-Saëns Organ Symphony
July 19-20. Thierry Fischer, guest conductor. Also featuring Berlioz: Overture: “King Lear”; Martin: Concerto for Seven Winds. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph. 6:30pm; Saturday 7:30pm. Free.

Pitchfork Music Festival
July 19-21. Headliners for this three-day music festival include Bjork, R. Kelly and Belle and Sebastian. Union Park, 1501 West Randolph. Single-day tickets $50, three-day pass $120. pitchforkmusicfestival.com.

SAT/20
Sheffield Garden Walk & Festival
July 20-21. The garden celebrates its forty-fifth year with self-guided tours of ninety gardens, guided architectural tours, live music, including Poi Dog Pondering, activities for the kids and food. Webster and Sheffield, (773)929-9255. Noon-10pm. $7; $10 after 3pm. sheffieldgardenwalk.com.

Tour of West Ridge
Architectural and historic bike tour of Chicago’s neighborhoods, led by Lee Diamond. At Indian Boundary Park, 2500 W. Lunt. 11am. $10. bigshouldersrealty.com

SUN/21
Dearborn Garden Walk
Admission includes access to more than twenty rear gardens, narrated architectural walking tour of historic Dearborn Street and live jazz and classical performances in select gardens. Entry at The Latin Middle School, 45 W. North. Noon-5pm. $30 advance, $35 July 21. dearborngardenwalk.com

Rock N’ Roll Half Marathon
20,000 runners on a 13.1 mile looped course with start and finish in Grant Park. Live bands every mile with a free finish line festival.Go to competitor.com to register. 6:30am.

MON/22
Downtown Sound: The Handsome Family + AZITA
Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park near the corner of Michigan and Randolph, (312)742-1168. 6:30pm. Free.

TUE/23
Chicago Sidewalk Sale
July 23-24. Forty Chicago jewelry, accessory and apparel designers, along with independent boutiques will be offering their wares in this seventh annual event. Daley Plaza, 50 West Washington. 9am-3pm. Free.

Rush Hour Concerts: Music of Gabrieli, Beethoven, and Shostakovich for trombone quartet
Peter Ellefson, Randall Hawes, Timothy Higgins, Michael Mulcahy. St. James Cathedral, 65 East Huron. 5:15pm, reception with artists, 5:45pm, half-hour concert. Free. rushhour.org

Tuesdays on the Terrace: Jazz Links All Stars
Live jazz on the MCA’s garden lawn plus Summer Studios art making for families. Lawn chairs available for rental for $5. Hotdogs and burgers from the grill, and locally grown cuisine from the MCA Farmer’s Market. Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 East Chicago. 5:30pm-8pm, (312)397-4034 for dinner reservations. $25 dinner buffet. Free to attend.

WED/24
Grant Park Music Festival: Shostakovich: Symphony No. 5
Hannu Lintu, guest conductor; Kirill Gerstein, piano. Also featuring Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 1. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph. 6:30pm. Free.

Theater on the Lake: The Quality of Life by The Den Theatre
Through July 28. 2401 North Lake Shore, (312)742-7994. Wednesday-Saturday 7:30 pm, Sunday 6:30pm. $18.

THU/25
Made in Chicago World Class Jazz:  Dee Alexander’s Funkin’ With Acoustic Soul: Tribute to James Brown and Jimi Hendrix
Millennium Park, near Michigan and Randolph, (312)742-1168. 6:30pm. Free.

FRI/26
Grant Park Music Festival: Sibelius: Violin Concerto
July 26-27. Hannu Lintu, guest conductor; Karen Gomyo, violin. Also featuring Sibelius: “Pohjola’s Daughter“; Glazunov: Symphony No. 4. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph. 6:30pm; Saturday 7:30pm. Free.

SAT/27
Wicker Park Fest
July 27-28. Music-oriented street festival featuring local food and drink. Headliners include Ted Leo & the Pharmacists, and Roky Erikson. Milwaukee between North and Paulina. Noon-10pm. $5. wickerparkfest.com

Chicago Scene Boat Party 2013
Chicago’s “Play Pen” on Lake Michigan, between Ohio Street Beach and Chicago Avenue. Noon-6pm. Free, but you need a boat to ride on. chicagosceneboatparty.com

MON/29
Downtown Sound: Dessa +  Psalm One
Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park near the corner of Michigan and Randolph, (312)742-1168. 6:30pm. Free.

TUE/30
Grant Park Chorus: Songs of Praise and Devotion

Christopher Bell, chorus director and conductor, brings his chorus to the South Side. Featuring Parry: My soul there is a country, Miškinis: Dum Medium Silentium, Miškinis: Pater Noster, Miškinis: O Sacrum Convivium, Mawby: Alleluia, Christus resurrexit, Rachmaninoff: Three movements from “Vespers” Tormis: Two songs to words by Ernst Enno: “Early summer’s fairytale, Soundlessly somewhere”; Garrop: Sonnets of Desire, Longing, and Whimsy; Sametz: “I have had singing.” South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 South Shore Drive, 7pm. Free.

Rush Hour Concerts: Lyric Shorts: Rossini’s “The Barber of Seville”
Singers from the Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Opera Center at Lyric Opera of Chicago St. James Cathedral, 65 East Huron. 5:15pm, reception with artists, 5:45pm, half-hour concert. Free. rushhour.org

Tuesdays on the Terrace: Harrison Bankhead
Live jazz on the MCA’s garden lawn plus Summer Studios art making for families. Lawn chairs available for rental for $5. Hotdogs and burgers from the grill, and locally grown cuisine from the MCA Farmer’s Market. Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 East Chicago. 5:30pm-8pm, (312)397-4034 for dinner reservations. $25 dinner buffet. Free to attend.

WED/31
Grant Park Music Festival: Kalmar Conducts Bruckner
Carlos Kalmar, conductor. Bruckner: Symphony No. 2. Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park near Michigan and Randolph. 6:30pm. Free.

Theater on the Lake: Long Way Go Down by Jackalope Theatre
Through August 4. 2401 North Lake Shore, (312)742-7994. Wednesday-Saturday 7:30 pm, Sunday 6:30pm. $18.