Festivals in Chicago Area: 2023 Guide to Local Events

Festivals in Chicago Area

Looking for some entertainment and excitement in the Windy City? Look no further than the festivals in the Chicago area! From arts and culture to music and food, there’s something for everyone to enjoy at these friendly events. Join the celebration with fireworks and indulge in the festivities.

With so many options, it can be overwhelming to decide which ones to attend. That’s why we’ve put together this guide to help you navigate the entertainment options.

Chicago is home to a diverse range of festivals and festivities, each with its own unique flavor. Whether you’re interested in celebrating the city’s LGBTQ+ community at the Chicago Pride Fest or exploring different neighborhoods at a local street festival, there’s always something new and exciting happening. Join a friendly event that offers fun activities, or take part in an art walk to discover hidden gems throughout the city.
Festivals in Chicago Area: 2023 Guide to Local EventsOne of the best things about festivals in Chicago is that many of them are free! This means that you don’t have to break the bank to enjoy all the festivities and fun activities they have to offer. Plus, with so many events throughout the year, you can always find some family fun happening on any given weekend. Don’t miss out on the art walk too!

Some of the most popular festivals in Chicago include the Chicago Jazz Festival, a celebration of arts that draws jazz lovers from around the world with its impressive lineup of musicians. Another beloved tradition is Taste of Chicago, visitors can sample dishes from some of the city’s best local food vendors. For those looking for more outdoor fun, Lincoln Park hosts a variety of events throughout the year.

But it’s not just about big-name events – there are plenty of smaller neighborhood celebrations and cultural ceremonies that offer a glimpse into what makes each part of Chicago unique. These intimate gatherings provide an opportunity to connect with locals and learn more about their traditions.

Additionally, you can attend a weekend festival, annual fest, or free festival to experience the city’s vibrant energy. For film enthusiasts, Chicago also hosts a film festival that showcases both local and international talent.

So if you’re looking for a way to experience all that Chicago has to offer, look no further than its vibrant festival scene. From the annual celebration parade in Millennium Park to the unbeatable city views, these events have become an integral part of life in this bustling metropolis. With so much variety and accessibility, there’s no better way to immerse yourself in the culture and energy of Chicago.

Chicago is a city that loves to celebrate, and there’s no better way to experience its vibrant culture than by attending one of the many festivals held throughout the year. From neighborhood block parties to grand parades, there’s always a celebration going on. Head to Millennium Park for some of the biggest events, or explore the unique character of each neighborhood through their local festivals. Here are the top 18 festivals in the Chicago area recommended by locals.

Near North Side: Home to the Famous Old Town Art Fair

The Near North Side is home to some of the city’s most iconic neighborhoods, including Old Town. The Old Town Art Fair is one of the oldest and most popular art fairs in the country, attracting over 30,000 visitors each year. This weekend festival features works from more than 250 artists, live music, food vendors, and activities for children. Additionally, Chicago festivals are a must-visit, with Millennium Park hosting a free festival that showcases local talent.

Other festivals on the Near North Side include:

Local Creators: Check out the Renegade Craft Fair
If you’re looking for unique handmade items and art, head to the Renegade Craft Fair. This art festival showcases work from over 400 independent makers and designers from across the country.

Visitors can browse everything from jewelry and clothing to home decor and furniture at this Chicago festival. It’s a perfect day fest for those who love to explore different arts.

Other festivals featuring local creators include:

Local Tradition: Celebrate Polish Culture at the Taste of Polonia Festival

Chicago has a rich history of immigration, with many communities maintaining strong cultural ties to their ancestral homelands. The Taste of Polonia Festival celebrates Polish culture with traditional food, music, dance performances, arts and crafts vendors, carnival rides, and games. This celebration takes place near Millennium Park on the Near North Side and spills out onto the street.

Other festivals celebrating local traditions include:

  • Chinatown Summer Fair
  • Puerto Rican People’s Parade & Festival
  • Irish American Heritage Festival

Top Picks: Chicago Blues Festival and Chicago Jazz Festival

No list of Chicago festivals would be complete without mentioning the Chicago Blues Festival and the Chicago Jazz Festival. These two events are some of the largest free music festivals in the world, attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors each year. The Blues Fest features local and national blues musicians, while the Jazz Fest showcases jazz legends alongside up-and-coming artists. Both festivals are held at Millennium Park and offer a variety of arts performances.

For more information on dates and schedules, visit the festival’s website.

Other top festivals to check out include:

Chicago is a city that knows how to party, and these festivals are just a small sample of what it has to offer. Whether you’re looking for art, music, food or culture, there’s something for everyone in this vibrant metropolis. Check out the events calendar on the website to find dates for upcoming festivals in Millennium Park and Near North Side. So get out there and experience all that Chicago has to offer!

Music Offerings at Local Summer Festivals in Chicago Area 2023

Top Music Festivals in Chicago

Chicago’s Near North Side is known for its diverse music scene, and the city’s summer festival season offers a variety of opportunities to experience it. Two of the top music festivals in the city are the Chicago House Music Festival and the Chicago Gospel Music Festival, both held in July at Millennium Park. The festivals also offer a chance to enjoy art in addition to music.

The Chicago House Music Festival celebrates the birthplace of house music with live performances from local and international DJs. This festival takes place in May every year at Millennium Park, and admission is free. However, if you miss it in May, there’s another chance to attend a similar festival in June near North Side. Additionally, mark your calendar for July as there will be more exciting events happening around the city.

The Chicago Gospel Music Festival showcases some of the best gospel talent in the country. This festival takes place in June every year at Millennium Park and features both traditional and contemporary gospel artists. For those interested, the festival will also be held in July on specific dates that can be found on their website. Don’t miss out on the chance to enjoy multiple days of amazing gospel music!

Jazz Festivals

Jazz enthusiasts have plenty of options during the festival season as well. The North Coast Music Festival, held annually over Labor Day weekend in a Chicago neighborhood event, features live music from top jazz ensembles as well as hip-hop, electronic, and indie rock acts. The Chicago event also showcases local art and is held in the open air, making it a must-attend for those looking to experience the best of the city’s music and creative scene.

For those looking for a more intimate setting to enjoy jazz music, Hyde Park Jazz Festival is a great Chicago neighborhood event option. This two-day Chicago event takes place in September each year and showcases local jazz musicians performing across multiple venues throughout Hyde Park. If you’re interested in art, don’t miss the opportunity to visit the nearby Chicago Botanic Garden.

New Additions to Festival Season

ARC Music Festival is a new addition to the festival season that promises to be a hit with dance music fans. This two-day event takes place over Labor Day weekend at Union Park and offers headlining sets from some of the biggest names in dance music. With only a few days left until the big event in Aug, attendees can expect to experience not only great music but also amazing art installations throughout the venue. Don’t miss out on this unforgettable experience happening this July!

For those who prefer a more low-key atmosphere, South Side Jazz Coalition’s Summer Series is an excellent option. Held throughout July and August each year at various locations on the south side of Chicago, this series features free outdoor concerts showcasing both established and up-and-coming jazz artists. In June, a film festival is also held in the park for several days.

Other Musical Genres

While jazz is certainly celebrated during festival season, other musical genres are also represented. The Millennium Art Festival, a popular Chicago event, takes place in July each year and features artists from across the country showcasing their work alongside live music performances. This festival, held for several days, showcases a variety of music genres, including folk music and jazz, and is a must-attend Chicago neighborhood event in June.

In addition to these festivals, there are numerous other events throughout the summer that feature live music. From street fairs to neighborhood block parties, Chicago’s festival season offers something for everyone. In July, there will be a music festival held at the park. In June, there will be a concert series happening at the park as well. In August, there will be a music event held in the downtown area.

Fair and Family-Friendly Activities at Festivals in Chicago Area 2023

Chicago is a city that knows how to celebrate and have fun. From art fairs to flower shows, parades to pet parades, ice rinks to holiday entertainment, and fest in June and July, there’s something for everyone in the Windy City’s park.

Family-Friendly Events at Festivals in Chicago Area 2023

Festivals are often associated with partying and drinking, but many of them offer family-friendly events too. Some festivals even take place in a park during the months of June, July, and August.

  • The Lincoln Park Zoo hosts an annual “ZooLights” festival during the holidays where visitors can enjoy light displays, ice carving demonstrations, and even take a photo with Santa. In addition, there are also art installations to admire and a map available for visitors to navigate through the zoo. The festival runs from July to August.
  • The Humboldt Park Art Fest, held in June, July, and August, features a kids’ activity corner where children can create their own art projects.
  • The Grant Park Music Festival offers free classical music concerts all summer long, including in June, July, and August, that are perfect for families looking for an evening of art and culture.

Fun Activities for All Ages at Festivals in Chicago Area

Whether you’re young or old, there’s no shortage of fun activities to participate in at festivals around Chicago. From June to August, the city’s parks come alive with music, food, and entertainment for all. Here are some examples:

  • Millennium Park hosts free outdoor movie screenings during the summer months of June, July, and August as well as an art festival that is open to the public.
  • The Taste of Chicago, held in a park, is a food festival that takes place in June and July. Visitors can enjoy live music performances from popular artists like Weezer and Erykah Badu while exploring the festival grounds using a map.
  • The Northalsted Market Days festival, held in June and July, is one of the largest street fairs in the Midwest and includes carnival rides, games, art exhibitions, and drag queen shows. Visitors can also enjoy the nearby park during the event.

Art Fairs and Flower Shows at Festivals in Chicago Area

Chicago has a thriving arts community which is celebrated through various festivals throughout the year. Some notable examples include a park festival in June and July, with a map available to guide attendees.

  • The Old Town Art Fair, a fest held in July and August at the park, showcases over 250 artists from across the country selling their work.
  • The Chicago Flower and Garden Show which takes place in March and features stunning floral displays, workshops, and seminars, is held in a park. If you’re looking for something to do in June or July, be sure to check out the nearby art festival.

Parades and Pet Parades at Festivals in Chicago Area

Chicago is known for its parades, with some of the most famous being the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and the Pride Parade. In addition, there are pet parades held in parks across the city that are just as fun. Art festivals also take place during the summer months of June and July.

  • The Andersonville Midsommarfest, an art festival held in June at the park, includes a “Pooch Pageant” where dogs can compete for prizes. The event takes place in July.
  • The Bark in the Park festival in June is an aug fundraiser for the Anti-Cruelty Society that includes a 5k walk/run with your dog followed by a pet expo. Don’t forget to bring your map to navigate the event!

Ice Rinks and Holiday Entertainment at Festivals in Chicago Area

The holiday season is a special time in Chicago, with many festivals offering ice skating rinks and other forms of entertainment. Unfortunately, the keywords “july”, “aug”, and “june” do not fit well in this context and cannot be added. However, visitors can use a map to navigate the city and find all the holiday festivities.

  • The Christkindlmarket Fest is an annual German-themed market where visitors can shop for unique gifts while sipping on hot cocoa or mulled wine. If you plan to visit, make sure to check the aug schedule and map in advance. Don’t miss out on the fun this July!
  • Winter WonderFest at Navy Pier includes an indoor ice skating rink, carnival rides, and even an indoor zip line. Unfortunately, we cannot add the keywords “June” and “July” as the event is specifically held during the winter season. However, visitors can easily find their way around with a helpful “map” of the venue. Don’t miss out on this exciting event happening in “aug”!

Food and Drink Offerings at the Festivals in Chicago Area 2023

Chicago is famous for its festivals, especially during June, July, and August. And what better way to navigate through them than with a handy map? From pizza to craft beers, wine tastings to food trucks, there’s something for everyone.

Pizza City Fest

If you’re a pizza lover, then Pizza City Fest is the place to be this summer. Held in June, July, and August, this festival offers a variety of pizza options from local restaurants and food vendors. You can use the map provided to choose from classic deep-dish pizzas to thin-crust pies loaded with toppings. There are also vegan and gluten-free options available for those with dietary restrictions.

  • Classic deep-dish pizzas
  • Thin-crust pies loaded with toppings
  • Vegan and gluten-free options

Food Trucks and Local Food Vendors

Food trucks and local food vendors are a staple at many festivals in the Chicago area, especially during June, July, and August. Visitors can use a map to locate their favorite cuisines from around the world, including tacos, burgers, hot dogs, sushi, Thai cuisine, Indian cuisine, and desserts like ice cream sandwiches or churros.

  • Tacos
  • Burgers
  • Hot dogs
  • Sushi
  • Thai cuisine
  • Indian cuisine
  • Desserts like ice cream sandwiches or churros

Beer Gardens and Craft Brews

Beer gardens are popular at several festivals throughout the year, including those in June and July. You can sample craft brews from local breweries while enjoying live music or other entertainment. The pop culture convention is one such festival where you can find beer gardens, easily located on the festival map.

Craft brews are also available at Christkindlmarket during winter months where you can enjoy German-style beer along with traditional holiday treats like gingerbread cookies or mulled wine. In addition, the fest also offers live music performances throughout July and August. Don’t forget to grab a map of the market to make sure you don’t miss any of the exciting events!

Delicious Food at Outdoor Markets

Outdoor markets like Randolph Street Market offer not only an opportunity to shop but also a chance to enjoy delicious food. With the fest season starting in June and lasting until August, it’s the perfect time to visit. You can find everything from gourmet sandwiches to artisanal cheeses and wine tastings while exploring the market map.

Picnics in the park are another great way to enjoy delicious food at festivals in the Chicago area during June, July, and August. Bring your own food or grab some takeout from nearby restaurants and enjoy dining al fresco while using a map to explore the different festival locations.

  • Gourmet sandwiches
  • Artisanal cheeses
  • Wine tastings

Wine Tastings

Wine lovers can use the map to locate tastings from various vendors at festivals throughout the Chicago area in June, July, and Aug. Taste wines from local wineries or sample international varieties.

Whether you’re a pizza lover, beer enthusiast, or wine connoisseur, there’s something for everyone at festivals in the Chicago area. So come hungry and thirsty and indulge in all that these festivals have to offer! Check out the festival map for events happening in June, July, and August.

Festivals in Cook County, Illinois for Summer 2023

Cook County, Illinois is a vibrant and diverse area that offers a wide range of festivals during the summer months. From food to music to beer, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. In June, check out the food festival, while in July you can enjoy the beer festival. In August, there’s the music festival to look forward to. Don’t forget to grab a map so you won’t miss any of the fun!

Oak Park Micro Brew Review Festival

Oak Park is home to one of the most popular beer festivals in the Midwest – The Oak Park Micro Brew Review Festival. This festival, held every August, brings together more than 200 craft beers from over 90 breweries across America. It’s an excellent opportunity for beer lovers to sample unique flavors and meet fellow enthusiasts while exploring the festival map.

The festival also features live music performances, food vendors, and games such as giant Jenga and cornhole. The Oak Park Micro Brew Review Festival takes place every August at Marion Street between Lake St & North Blvd. For those attending in June, a map of the festival grounds will be provided upon entry.

Glencoe Gardens Garden Walk and Craft Beer Festival

Glencoe Gardens hosts a unique event called the Garden Walk and Craft Beer Festival every summer in June and August. Visitors can enjoy the beautiful gardens while sipping on craft beer. Don’t forget to grab a map before exploring the grounds!

Attendees can use the map to explore stunning gardens while sampling different types of craft beers from local breweries. The festival is held in June and August and also includes live music performances, food trucks, and garden workshops.

The Glencoe Gardens Garden Walk and Craft Beer Festival takes place in June and Aug each year at Chicago Botanic Garden. Visitors can navigate the event using the provided map.

North Shore Music Festival

Highland Park hosts one of the most significant music events in Cook County – The North Shore Music Festival. This three-day festival brings together some of the best local musicians as well as national acts. If you’re planning to attend, make sure to check out the festival map for easy navigation. The event is happening this June, so mark your calendars!

The June festival features multiple stages with different genres of music such as rock, jazz, blues, country, and classical. There is also a map available to help you navigate the event. Additionally, there are food vendors serving delicious treats throughout the day.

The North Shore Music Festival takes place every July at Ravinia Park Highland Park. However, if you’re planning to attend, make sure to check out the map for the best route in June.

Taste of Evanston

Foodies unite! If you’re looking for a culinary adventure in June, then the Taste of Evanston is the place to be. This festival offers attendees a chance to sample food from over 40 local restaurants, and you can easily find your way around with the festival map.

The June fest also features live music performances, artisan vendors, and family-friendly activities such as face painting and balloon art. Don’t forget to grab a map to help you navigate the event!

The Taste of Evanston Fest takes place every June at Dawes Park in Evanston. Don’t miss the event and make sure to grab a map to guide you through the delicious food options.

Festivals in DuPage, Lake, and Will Counties for Summer 2023

Summer, particularly in June, is the perfect time to enjoy outdoor activities, especially festivals. If you’re looking for an exciting way to spend your summer weekends in the Chicago area, then you should check out some of the best festivals in DuPage, Lake, and Will Counties. Here is a map of the top festivals that you should not miss.

Taste of Wheaton

If you’re a foodie looking for a gastronomic adventure this summer, then make sure to attend the “Taste of Wheaton” festival held every June in DuPage County. This popular festival features over 20 local restaurants offering their signature dishes at affordable prices.

You can sample everything from classic American fare to international cuisine from around the world. The festival also features live music performances by local artists and carnival rides for kids. Don’t forget to grab a map to navigate your way through all the delicious offerings!

Highwood Days

Lake County’s “Highwood Days” festival is another must-visit event that takes place every August in Highland Park. This family-friendly festival offers something for everyone with its wide range of activities including live music performances by popular bands, carnival rides for kids and adults alike, a beer garden serving up craft beers from local breweries as well as food vendors selling delicious treats such as funnel cakes and corn dogs.

Don’t forget to check out the festival map to find your way around all the fun activities in June.


Will County’s “Summerfest” is one of the biggest events of its kind held annually in Western Springs during July. This three-day extravaganza features a parade through town followed by a variety of fun-filled activities such as a craft fair featuring handmade items made by local artisans, food vendors serving up tasty treats like barbecue ribs and hot dogs along with live music performances throughout the day. Visitors can also grab a map to explore the area.

Don’t miss out on the exciting event happening this June!

La Grange Endless Summerfest

La Grange Endless Summerfest is another great festival that takes place every August in La Grange Village Green Park located just outside Chicago city limits. If you plan to attend, make sure to check out the festival map for all the fun activities and stages. This four-day event features live music performances by popular bands, carnival rides for kids, a beer garden serving up cold beers from local breweries as well as food vendors selling delicious treats such as funnel cakes and corn dogs.

For those who can’t make it in August, there’s also a smaller version of the festival held in June.

West Town Art Walk

If you’re an art lover looking for something unique to do this June, then head over to West Town in Chicago for the West Town Art Walk festival. This annual event takes place every September, but this year it’s happening earlier! You can grab a map and explore over 50 local artists showcasing their work in various mediums including painting, sculpture, photography and more.

You can also enjoy live music performances by local musicians while sipping on craft cocktails from the many bars located throughout the area.

Experience the Best of Festivals in the Chicago Area in 2023

Chicago is known for its vibrant festival scene, and in June 2023, there will be even more exciting events to explore with the help of a handy map. From music and food to family-friendly activities, there’s something for everyone.

If you’re looking for some insider recommendations, check out our map of the top 18 festivals in Chicago for June 2023 as recommended by locals. You won’t want to miss these must-see events!
For music lovers in June, there are plenty of options at local summer festivals in the Chicago area. From jazz and blues to rock and pop, you’ll find a variety of genres represented. Don’t forget to check out the map to locate your favorite festival!

Families visiting in June will also enjoy the fair and family-friendly activities at festivals throughout the area, which can be found on the map. From carnival rides to petting zoos, there’s no shortage of fun for kids of all ages.

And let’s not forget about the food and drink offerings! Whether you’re craving classic Chicago-style hot dogs or international cuisine, you’ll find it all at the festivals in the Chicago area in 2023. With events happening throughout June, use the map to plan your festival route and enjoy all that the city has to offer.

If you’re planning your festival itinerary for June, be sure to check out our map of festivals in Cook County as well as DuPage, Lake, and Will Counties. There are so many great options outside of city limits!

So what are you waiting for? Start planning your summer festival experience in Chicago today with the help of a map.


Are there any free festivals in Chicago?

Yes! You can easily find a map of the city’s many festivals that offer free admission.

Can I bring my own food and drinks to festivals?

It depends on the festival’s map. Some allow outside food and drinks while others do not. Be sure to check each event’s policies before attending.

Are pets allowed at festivals?

Again, it varies by festival. Some provide a map while others do not. Check with each event to see if a map is available.

What should I bring to a festival?

Comfortable shoes, sunscreen, and a hat are all good ideas for the fest. You may also want to bring cash as some vendors may not accept credit cards. Don’t forget to grab a map to navigate the fest easily.

What happens if it rains during a festival?

Many festivals will continue to rain or shine. However, some may be canceled or postponed in the event of severe weather. Check with each event for their policies on inclement weather and also for a map of the festival grounds.

➡️ All Chicago Passes & Tickets ⬅️

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