Things to do in Chicago

Things to Do in and Around Chicago This Weekend

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Chicagoans can enjoy warm temperatures and clear skies over the next couple days as the city winds down for one of the last weekends of summer.

From Pitchfork and Vegandale festivals to monarch butterfly tagging and baseball games, there are plenty of ways to enjoy this holiday weekend in Chicago.

Here are some things to do around the city this weekend:

Snack on Vegan Bites at Vegandale Fest

Chicago's Grant Park will be filled with plant-based foodies as the Vegandale Festival runs from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Tickets are $10 to enter and are available online or at the entrance. Over 100 vendors will be serving up an array of vegan dishes from meat-free corn dogs and tacos to dairy-free cakes and donuts, among other bites.

Groove Along to Alternative Music Performances at Pitchfork Festival

Pitchfork Music Festival returns to Chicago this weekend, running through Sunday in the city's Union Park.

The music festival will feature a variety of alternative, rock and indie music artists, including Phoebe Bridgers, St. Vincent and Erykah Badu, among others. Single-day tickets are still available at $90.

Full lineup here.

Get Up Close and Personal With Monarch Butterflies at 'Flutter Into Fall'

On Sunday, the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum will host their Flutter Into Fall festival, which celebrations the monarch migration. The day will consist of activities like storytelling, nature walks and monarch tagging.

Catch a White Sox or Cubs Game

The Chicago White Sox play the Boston Red Sox Saturday at 6:10 p.m. at Guaranteed Rate Field and again on Sunday at 1:10 p.m.

At Wrigley Field, the Chicago Cubs play the second game Saturday of a three-game series against the San Francisco Giants at 1:20 p.m. and again Saturday and Sunday at 1:20 p.m.

Explore Old Town's New HideSeek Museum

Old Town's new immersive museum is meant for people to "feel like a kid again" with a ball pit, slinky room and giant bean bag chairs, among other features.

Located at 1620 N. Wells St., HideSeek is open Friday from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Stroll Through the Chicago Botanic Garden

The Chicago Botanic Garden in suburban Glencoe is open this weekend from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., although the Rose Terrace closes at 3 p.m. on Saturday.

Due to COVID-19 mitigations, all visitors must pre-register to walk through the gardens and wear a mask indoors if not vaccinated against the virus. Parking on the weekends is free for members and costs $30 for non-members.

Go on a Food Tour Around Chinatown

Chicago Food Tours offers a guided 3-hour long food tour through classic spots in the city's Chinatown neighborhood every Saturday and Sunday through October.

The tour includes five sit-down meals and tastings of foods like Hong Kong Dim Sum, spicy Szechuan and sweet milk egg tarts. Tickets cost $80 for adults and $50 for children over 6 years old.

Visit a Classic Chicago Museum

Chicago museums return to normal operational hours last weekend, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced, as part of Chicago's move to a full reopening.

Some museums will continue to have COVID-19 protocols in place, though. The Shedd Aquarium still asks that visitors purchase tickets in advance, but will no longer require vaccinated guests to wear masks.

Savor a Bite at Chicago Restaurants Indoors or Outside

Restaurants and bars across Chicago are allowed to return to full capacity in Phase 5, as well as allow for fully vaccinated guests to walk around without a face covering.

However, some establishments may opt to keep COVID-19 restrictions in place until further notice.

As Chicago expected sunny skies and warm temperatures this weekend, many could be on the hunt for places to wine and dine outdoors. The city is known for its foodie scene, filled with plenty of patios and rooftops.

Choose Chicago has offered up a list of places currently offering outdoor dining in Chicago. Here are some highlights:

Avli Taverna: 1335 W. Wrightwood Ave.
Beatrix Fulton Market: 834 W Fulton Market
Beatnik on the River: 180 N Upper Wacker Dr.
Aba: 302 N. Green St. 3rd Floor
Ema: 74 W Illinois St.
Mesler: 1401 E. 53rd St.
The Duck Inn: 2701 S. Eleanor St.
Theater on the Lake: 2401 N. Lake Shore Dr.
Beatnik on the River: 180 N. Upper Wacker Dr.
BOKA: 1729 N. Halsted St.
Formento's: 925 W. Randolph St.
Siena Tavern: 51 W. Kinzie St.
Offshore: 1000 E Grand Ave
Wood: 3335 N. Halsted St.
Happy Camper: 1209 N. Wells St.
Tzuco: 720 N. State St.
LuxBar: 18 E. Bellevue Pl.

Take a Trip South to See the Caverns Opening Weekend For First Time in Over 10 Years

Caverns in southern Illinois reopened to the public for the first time in over 10 years this summer, after being closed due to an abundance of caution, officials announced.

The southern attraction reopened as another spot for residents to enjoy as the state moved into Phase 5 of its coronavirus reopening plan. Until October, the caves will be open Wednesday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Take a Swing at the Maggie Daley Park Miniature Golf Course

Maggie Daley Park’s 18-hole, Chicago-themed miniature golf course, and ribbon is open daily. In the summer, the ribbon is transformed to welcome scooter users, rollerbladers, and roller skaters. Weekend rentals are now available.

Pick Seasonal Produce at a City Farmers Market

Farmers markets across Chicago are welcoming residents back for the 2021 season into the fall. Scattered throughout the city, the markets are open at various times throughout the week.

Sail Down the Chicago River or Lake Michigan By Boat, Kayak

Take in the city's iconic architecture while sailing along the Chicago River on one of several boat tours. The 90-minute tours run every hour and a half and cost $40 for an adult and $18 for a child.

Due to COVID-19 mitigations, the Wendella boat tours require that passengers wear a face covering while on the vessel and practice social distancing.

Trying to see the city's skyscrapers from a new angle? Guided kayak tours and rentals give you a trip down the Chicago River into Lake Michigan.

Enjoy the Skyline While Relaxing on Chicago's Lakefront Beaches

Chicago beaches along Lake Michigan opened to the public with lifeguards on duty Memorial Day weekend, and have seen many residents heading over to enjoy the water.

The city's beaches were closed during the summer of 2020 in line with COVID-19 restrictions.

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