Chicago events calendar for August 2016. Best festivals, fun things to do, weekend street fairs, kids activities, and free entertainment in Chicago, Illinois.

Best events for 12 months
Best events for 12 months
August 2016
August 2016

Enjoy the best Chicago events, festivals, and things to do with this calendar of events.

Mileage is from the Wrigley Building in downtown Chicago, Illinois.

Millennium Park movies

August 1 - 30, 2016 (begins June 21)

0.5 miles south

Get a seat or sit on the lawn to see films on a 40-foot screen at Millennium Park Summer Film Series. Free.

Classical music festival

August 1 - 20, 2016

Chicago locations

Grant Park Music Festival is an outdoor classical music series at Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park. The rear seats are free, or bring a blanket or lawn chairs.

French fair

August 2, 2016

11 miles west

Immerse yourself in French art, food, wine, music, activities, and films at Art dans la Rue in Oak Park.

Rubber duck race

August 4, 2016

0 miles

Send a rubber duck downstream for charity and enjoy family fun at Windy City Rubber Ducky Derby.

Horror convention

August 5 - 7, 2016

16 miles NW

Flashback Weekend offers celebrity guests, vendors, and evening events at Crowne Plaza Chicago O’Hare.

Beer festival

August 6, 2016

27 miles west

Taste 80 micro brews, sample food, and hear live music at Wheaton Brew Fest in Wheaton.

Dogs at the park

August 6, 2016

27 miles west

Dog Days offers a pet play area, show of high-flying disc dogs, agility demonstrations, and vendors at Cantigny Park in Wheaton. Free except parking.

Corn festival

August 6, 2016

28 miles NW

A ticket to Corn Fest gets you a hamburger, brat, or hot dog; pop, watermelon, and all the fresh-picked corn you can eat. Includes arts & craft fair and bazaar, at Community Church in Rolling Meadows.

Taste of Lincoln Avenue

August 6 - 7, 2016

3.5 miles north

Hear 28 music acts on 3 stages, see juried art, visit vendors, and take the kids to a carnival with games, pony rides and petting zoo at Taste of Lincoln Avenue from Fullerton to Wrightwood.

Wrigleyville summer festival

August 6 - 7, 2016

5 miles north

Wrigleyville Summerfest has a kids’ zone, food, drinks, and music at 3300 N Seminary Ave. Donation.

Edgewater festival

August 6 - 7, 2016

8 miles north

Edge Fest offers North Side cuisine, local bands, karaoke, costumed dogs, and art on North Broadway from Thorndale to Ardmore. Donation.

Evanston arts festival

August 6 - 7, 2016

13 miles north

Lakeshore Arts Festival showcases 100 artists, live music (jazz, blues, folk, bluegrass, rock, baroque, and indie pop), a silent art auction, a children’s craft tent, and food vendors at Dawes Park in Evanston. Free.

Glenview art festival

August 6 - 7, 2016

22 miles NW

Art at the Glen Town Center features 185 artists, live music, food, and kids’ activities in Glenview. Free.

Fairy festival

August 6 - 7, 2016

38 miles west

The World of Faeries Festival welcomes you with or without costume for dance, music, games, shopping, and tea parties at Vasa Park in South Elgin.

Renaissance fair

August 6 - Sept. 5, 2016 (weekends)

49 miles north

Watch knights joust, shop an artisan market, mingle with costumed minstrels, play games, and attend shows at Bristol Renaissance Faire in 16th century England (i.e. Kenosha, WI).

Coin collectors convention

August 9 - 13, 2016

17 mile NW

At World’s Fair of Money, collectors network, buy, sell, trade, and view rare and historical coins and paper money in Rosemont convention center.

Taste of Andersonville

August 10, 2016 (6 to 8 p.m.)

9 miles north

A ticket to Taste of Andersonville Dinner Crawl gets you samples from 12 local restaurants.

Nerdy comedy

August 11 - 14, 2016

5 miles north

If you love comedy about nerdy subjects like the Twilight Zone, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Jane Austen, and Star Trek, NerdFest will get you laughing at Stage 773.

Hot dog festival

August 12 - 14, 2016

2.3 miles north

Chicago Hot Dog Fest features hot dog vendors, beer, music, and entertainment in the park at Clark Street and W LaSalle Drive. Free entry.

Japanese festival

August 12 - 14, 2016

3 miles north

Ginza Holiday offers Japanese dance, martial arts, drumming, bonsai, craftsmen at work, sushi, and teriyaki at Midwest Buddhist Temple. Donation.

Retro on Roscoe

August 12 - 14, 2016

7 miles NW

Watch top entertainment on 3 stages, shop 6 blocks of art and antique vendors, and see 50 classic cars at Retro on Roscoe in Roscoe Village. Donation.

Cuban festival

August 12 - 14, 2016

12 miles NW

Festival Cubano [sound] promises Cuban music, Latin American food, vendors, and a kids’ area in Riis Park at Narragansett Ave. & Fullerton Ave. Discount tickets $12 for two.

Beatles festival

August 12 - 14, 2016

16 miles NW

The Fest for Beatles Fans has a Beatles marketplace, guest speakers, a dance party, look-alike contest, games, and exhibits at Hyatt Regency O’Hare.

African American parade

August 13, 2016

5 miles south

Bud Billiken Parade is billed as the oldest and largest African American parade in America. It goes south down MLK Drive from Oakwood Blvd. to a picnic with food vendors in Washington Park. Free.

Northalsted Market Days

August 13 - 14, 2016

5 miles north

Northalsted Market Days is a popular gay-friendly street fair and music festival with 300 food, art, and craft vendors plus musical acts on 4 blocks of North Halsted Street from Belmont to Addison. Donation.

Kite festival

August 13 - 14, 2016

24 miles north

Make a kite in a workshop and fly it, watch stunt kites perform to music, and buy lunch at the Kite Festival in the meadow at Chicago Botanic Garden in Glencoe. See schedule of events.

French day in the park

August 14, 2016

27 miles west

French Connection Day features a French open-air market, wine tasting, French food, music, street performers, and children’s activities at Cantigny Park in Wheaton. Free except parking.

Military block party

August 18, 2016

1 mile NW

Celebrate America’s military service members and their families with live music, games, military vehicles, and refreshments at USO Clark After Dark in River North. Donation.

Comic book convention

August 18 - 21, 2016

17 mile NW

Wizard World Chicago Comic Con is about comic books, wrestling, science fiction, fantasy, film, horror, animation, anime, manga, and card games, at the convention center in Rosemont.

Scrapbook Expo

August 19 - 20, 2016

27 miles NW

Scrapbookers will find classes, vendors, and crop parties at the Scrapbook Expo at Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center.

Naperville Wine Festival

August 19 - 20, 2016

33 miles west

Sample fine wines, buy restaurant appetizers, and hear music at Naperville Wine Festival.

Italian festival

August 19 - 21, 2016

3.5 miles SW

Festa Italiana [sound] features Italian food, music, folk dance, a meatball-eating contest, and a Sunday procession on W Taylor Street at Ashland. Donation.

Art on Glenwood Ave.

August 19 - 21, 2016

9 miles north

Glenwood Avenue Arts Fest (GAAF) is a Friday night Cobblestone Jam plus a weekend artists’ market with 3 stages of music in Rogers Park. Free.

Edison Park festival

August 19 - 21, 2016

14 miles NW

Edison Park Fest offers food, beer, live music, a Saturday parade, a family stage, and a ticketed amusement area at 6730 N Olmsted Avenue. Free.

Noir film festival

August 19 - 25, 2016

6 miles north

Noir City screens classic films that are stylish, cynical, and melodramatic at the Music Box Theatre.

Oak Park beer tasting

August 20, 2016

11 miles west

Oak Park Micro Brew Review features tastings of 200 craft beers from 70 Midwest microbreweries and local restaurant food at 100 N Marion St. in Oak Park.

Air and water show

August 20 - 21, 2016 (10 a.m. to 3 p.m.)

2 miles north

The Chicago Air & Water Show features daredevil pilots, parachute teams, and jets flying in formation, plus water-skiing and boat jumping. See it from the waterfront near North Avenue Beach. Free.

Albany Park festival

August 20 - 21, 2016

8.7 miles NW

Albany Park World Fest offers diverse music, eclectic cuisine, global arts and crafts, and a family activity area at W. Lawrence Ave. and N. Kimball Ave.

Oak Park art festival

August 20 - 21, 2016

12 miles west

The Arts & Crafts Show at Oak Park Ave. & Lake St. features 125 artists in Oak Park. Free.

Holistic expo

August 20 - 21, 2016

16 miles NW

Body Mind Spirit Expo has 110 exhibitors and 72 presentations about alternative health and psychic power at North Shore Center for the Performing Arts in Skokie.

Oak Brook art fair

August 20 - 21, 2016

19 miles west

The Fine Art Festival features art, artists in action, and music in Oak Brook. Repeats in May. Free.

Japanese garden festival

August 20 - 21, 2016 (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.)

24 miles north

Malott Japanese Garden Summer Festival has a tea ceremony, stories, drumming, and harp at Chicago Botanic Garden in Glencoe. Free except parking.

Circus in the park

August 20 - Oct. 16, 2016

Chicago locations

Midnight Circus in the Parks is a series of daytime shows on the weekends at eight parks, which is perfect for families.

Dance festival

August 22 - 27, 2016

Downtown Chicago

See ballet, dance, and dance films in multiple venues at Chicago Dancing Festival. Free.

Beer at the zoo

August 26 - 27, 2016

14 miles SW

Enjoy 60 craft beers, live music, a silent auction, and animals at Zoo Brew at Brookfield Zoo for age 21+.

Skokie festival

August 26 - 27, 2016

14 miles NW

Skokie’s Backlot Bash has 15 hours of live music, a carnival, classic car show, free classic movies, kids’ run & 5K, and food and beer vendors. Free.

Beverage tasting

August 27 - 28, 2016

2.1 miles south

Get 15 tastes of beer and wine, and purchase cocktails, at Motor Row Craft Beer & Wine Festival, with live music on Michigan Avenue at Cermak.

Fashion festival

August 27 - 28, 2016

3.7 miles NW

Chicago Fashion Fest features outdoor runway shows with live music and food vendors on W Division Street from Damen to Paulina. Donation.

Bucktown arts festival

August 27 - 28, 2016

5 miles NW

Bucktown Arts Fest is an arts celebration that showcases 200 artists, musicians, dancers, poets, and performers at N Oakley and Lyndale. Free.

Art & food festivals

August 27 - 28, 2016

27 miles north

Top-rated Port Clinton Art Festival has 260 artists, a youth division, and kids’ art activities on Sat. & Sun. Nearby Taste of Highland Park is 5 p.m. Fri. to 6 p.m. Sun. Free.

Glen Ellyn art festival

August 27 - 28, 2016

27 miles west

Glen Ellyn Festival of the Arts features 80 juried artists, 12 musical acts, children’s activities, and food at Maryknoll Park.

Taste of Greece

August 27 - 29, 2016

2 miles SW

Enjoy Greek restaurant food, traditional music and dance, handcrafts, and children’s games at Taste of Greektown at 400 S Halsted Street. Free.


August 28, 2016

1.5 miles south

The Chicago Triathlon follows a picturesque course along Lake Michigan, beginning at Monroe Harbor.

Art fair

August 28, 2016

26 miles NW

See original works from 100 juried artists at A Walk in the Park - Summer Art Fair at North School Park in Arlington Heights. Free.

Movies in the Parks

August 2016 (undated)

Chicago locations

See 240 Movies in the Parks, if weather allows. Free.

Urban adventure race

August 2016 (undated)

Downtown Chicago

XPLORE Chicago is a 5K race to solve clues and complete challenges as you travel around the city.

Black film festival

August 2016 (undated)

0.5 miles SW

Black Harvest Film Festival celebrates the stories, images, heritage, and history of the black experience with dozens of films at Gene Siskel Film Center.

Thursday jazz

August 2016 (undated)

0.5 miles south

Hear a concert every Thursday at Made in Chicago: World Class Jazz in Millennium Park. Free.

Beer, bourbon, barbecue

August 2016 (undated)

0.7 miles west

A ticket to Beer, Bourbon and BBQ Fest gets you a BBQ lunch, 20 samples of bourbon/whiskey, and 10 samples of beer at John Barleycorn. Requires age 21 ID.

Family football festival

August 2016 (undated)

2 miles south

Chicago Bears Family Fest includes activities and live music outside Soldier Field from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., plus a 10:15 a.m. youth football demonstration and an 11:35 a.m. team practice inside the stadium.

Jazz at the aquarium

August 2016 (undated)

2 miles south

Hear musicians and vocalists, see views from the terrace, buy cocktails & food, and visit the aquarium at Jazzin’ at the Shedd at Shedd Aquarium.

Spicy food festival

August 2016 (undated)

2.5 miles west

Sample foods and hot sauces, and shop from dozens of vendors at The Great Chicago Fiery Foods Fest at 1340 W Washington Blvd.

Skate-ramp art show

August 2016 (undated)

5 miles NW

See skate ramps that are works of art at Slanted Canvas, featuring a reception, skating demonstration, music, and awards ceremony at Genesis Art Supply.

Family-friendly festival

August 2016 (undated)

7 miles SW

CreateFest features hands-on art activities, food trucks, live music, and even dance lessons at Bridgeport Art Center.

German fashion & wine

August 2016 (undated)

7 miles north

Mingle with German fashion designers, see an exhibit of Old World fabrics, and taste German wines and appetizers at Vintage Deutsch at Dank Haus.

Short film winners

August 2016 (undated)

7.2 miles NW

See the winning films from Chicago 48 Hour Film Project, which locals made in only two days, at Logan Theatre.

Ravinia music festival

August 2016 (undated)

23 miles north

See nationally known performers at Ravinia Festival, billed as America’s oldest outdoor music festival at Ravinia Park in Highland Park.

Farm festival

August 2016 (undated)

25 miles SW

Farm & Barn Fest has sheep shearing, blacksmithing, horse riding, restaurant food, music, and contests at Yunker Farm in Mokena.

Arlington horse race

August 2016 (undated)

27 miles NW

Watch jockeys compete for $1 million in prestigious Arlington Million horse race in Arlington Heights.
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© August 2016 calendar of events in Chicago, IL. Best events, fairs, festivals, and things to do in Chicago, Illinois.