Chicago events calendar - April 2017. Best festivals, fun things to do, weekend shows, discount tickets, theater, art, Easter brunch, events in Chicago, Illinois.

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Best events for 12 months
April 2017
April 2017

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

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

Jazz dance

April 1, 2017 (begins March 31)

0.5 miles south

Watch jazz dance company Giordano Dance Chicago, known for exhilarating and emotional performances, at Harris Theater. Discount tickets $18 to $68.


April 1, 2017 (begins March 31)

3 miles SW

Chicago’s best chefs serve bacon dishes and drinks for lunch and dinner at Baconfest Chicago in UIC Forum.

Children’s theater

April 1, 2017 (10:30 a.m.)

3.8 miles north

The Snowy Day and Other Stories is a humorous play that uses innovative shadow puppets and live action to bring characters from children’s books to life at the Apollo Theater. Discount tickets $12.

Beer and wine festival

April 1, 2017 (5 p.m., VIP 4)

28 miles SW

Tinley Park Brew & Vine Festival features breweries, vintners, restaurants, and live entertainment at Tinley Park Convention Center.

Improv festival

April 1 - 2, 2017 (begins March 27)

Chicago locations

Billed as the world’s longest-running festival of improvisational theater, Chicago Improv Festival includes music, song, comedy, story, and puppetry performances.

Beatles music

April 1 - 2, 2017 (begins March 28)

0.5 miles SW

Rain celebrates the 50th anniversary of “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” by performing the entire album live at Oriental Theatre. Discount tickets $29 to $39.

Children’s expo

April 1 - 2, 2017 (begins March 31)

27.4 miles NW

The Kids Expo features family-oriented vendors plus children’s activities (some ticketed) at Schaumburg Convention Center. Discount tickets.

Flower show

April 1 - 9, 2017 (begins March 26)

0.5 mile south

Macy’s Flower Show features flowers and exotic topiaries in landscapes, plus scheduled events at Macy’s on State Street. Free.

Musical: Saturday Night Fever

April 1 - 9, 2017 (also March)

18 miles west

Based on the 1970s film starring John Travolta, Saturday Night Fever is a coming of age musical set in Brooklyn and packed with Bee Gees disco hits, live at Drury Lane Theatre. Discount tickets $30 to $50.

Easter egg hunts

April 1 - 15, 2017 (begins March 29)

Chicago area

Please confirm the date, time, and rain policy.

Horse extravaganza

April 1 - 23, 2017

2.8 miles south

Horses star in Odysseo, an immersive theatrical experience where riders, acrobats, and aerialists take you to the world’s natural wonders aided by a giant video screen, a three-story mountain, and a lake in a heated tent at Soldier Field South Lot. Discount tickets $72 to $225.

Comedy dinner show

April 1 - 23, 2017

5.8 miles north

You’re invited to fictitious Tony ‘n Tina’s Wedding at Resurrection Church, followed by a real Italian dinner at Chicago Theater Works, with plenty of comedy improv and audience interaction. Discount tickets $59 to $75.

Dinner cruise

April 1 - May 12, 2017 (board 7 p.m.)

1 mile east

Enjoy a buffet meal aboard the Spirit of Chicago Dinner Cruise, with views of the Chicago skyline and DJ dance music, departing from Navy Pier. Discount tickets $74 to $86.

Parody of “Hamilton”

April 1 - May 14, 2017 (also March)

3.1 miles NW

Spamilton is a “smart, silly, and often convulsively funny” parody with “surreal Broadway musical mash-ups” [New York Times] at Royal George Theatre. Discount tickets $57 to $66.

The Wiz

April 1 - June 8, 2017

3.8 miles north

Dorothy and her companions sing and dance to rock, gospel, and soul in The Wiz as they travel though a gritty African-American land of Oz at the Apollo Theater in Lincoln Park. Discount tickets $10.

Adult variety show

April 1 - June 23 (10 p.m.)

7 miles north

Kiss Kiss Cabaret is a fun mix of burlesque, off-color comedy, music, magic, and variety acts at Uptown Underground for age 21+. Discount tickets $14 - $20.


April 1 - Aug. 31, 2017

multiple locations

These discount ticket prices include all taxes and fees.

Shamrock 8K race

April 2, 2017

1.5 miles SE

The Shamrock Shuffle on Sunday is billed as the world’s largest timed 8K race. It starts and ends in Grant Park and includes a post-race party. The free Shamrock Shuffle Health and Fitness Expo is Friday and Saturday at McCormick Place.

Discount race entry $50.

Taste of the Gold Coast

April 5, 2017 (6 to 8 p.m.)

1.9 miles north

A ticket to Taste of the Gold Coast includes samples from local restaurants and 2 drink tickets at Germania Place. Requires cocktail attire and age 21 ID. Discount tickets $39.

The Wiz

April 5 & 12, 2017 (8 p.m.)

4.8 miles north

Dorothy and her companions sing and dance to rock, gospel, and soul in The Wiz as they travel though a gritty African-American land of Oz at Theater Wit. Discount tickets $38.

Quilt festival

April 6 - 8, 2017

17 mile NW

Shop for quilts and take mini-classes at Quilt Festival Chicago in Rosemont convention center.

Science-fiction saga

April 6 - 23, 2017 (also March)

10.2 miles north

A Wrinkle in Time is based on a popular book that follows Meg and her friends across the stars and into the heart of a terrible evil to rescue her father from the darkness, at Lifeline Theatre. Discount tickets $15 to $20.

Magic lounge

April 6 - June 29, 2017 (also March)

7 miles north

Chicago Magic Lounge is an old-school magic show with close-up magic, bar magic, table-hopping magicians, and main stage acts at Uptown Underground for age 21+. Discount tickets $12 - $14.

Blues dance

April 7 - 9, 2017

multiple locations

BluesShout includes weekend workshops and dances with live music that go late into the night.

Villa Park arts & crafts

April 7 - 9, 2017

21 miles west

See hundreds of craft booths at Spring Festival, An Arts & Crafts Affair in the Odeum Expo Center.

Darker “Wizard of Oz”

April 7 - May 7, 2017

2.8 miles NW

When a twister drops Dorothy’s home on a witch, the munchkins name her Witch Slayer in The Great & Terrible Wizard of Oz, a dazzling spectacle with live music, giant puppets, and flying monkeys at Chopin Theatre. Discount tickets $15 to $32.

Beer tasting

April 8, 2017 (12 to 4 p.m.)

0.7 miles west

Sample 25 beers at River North Beer Fest at Moe’s Cantina & Old Crow Smokehouse. Repeats in Nov. Discount tickets $25.

Diabetes expo

April 8, 2017

3 miles south

Learn how to prevent and manage diabetes at the American Diabetes Association Expo, which has health screenings, cooking demonstrations, experts, and exhibitors at McCormick Place. Free.

Rum tasting

April 8, 2017 (1:30 to 5:30 p.m.)

6.8 miles NW

The MidWest Rum Fest has a tasting room and brand seminars at Logan Square Auditorium for age 21+. Discount tickets $39.

Easter for kids in Schaumburg

April 8, 2017

32 miles NW

Celebrate spring with egg hunts, games, crafts, moon bounce, concessions, and pony rides at Bunny Bash at the Community Recreation Center.

Festival of colors

April 8, 2017

32 miles west

Wear white and buy brightly colored organic flour for $2 to throw at friends and foes to celebrate Holi and mark the arrival of spring, with music and Indian food for sale at the Grand Pavilion in Naperville.

Easter brunch - Macy’s

April 8, 9, 15, 2017

Chicago and Oak Brook

Bunny Brunch buffet at Macy’s includes entertainment for the kids (a face painter, a balloon artist, and the Easter Bunny).

Robots at the museum

April 8, 9, 15, 2017

8 miles south

Celebrate National Robotics Week by viewing robots on display, interacting with some, hearing talks by robotics professors, and watching a live robotics competition at the Museum of Science and Industry.

Easter breakfast at the zoo

April 8 - 15, 2017

14 miles SW

Breakfast with the Bunny is an all-you-can-eat buffet and a visit with the Easter Bunny at Brookfield Zoo. Easter Champagne Brunch on April 16 is sold out.

Easter at Cantigny

April 8, 9, 16, 2017

27 miles west

Breakfast with the Bunny on April 8 and 9 includes a breakfast buffet, the Easter Bunny, face painting, and a balloon artist. The elegant Easter Brunch is April 16. Both events are at Cantigny Park in Wheaton.

Musical comedy

April 8 - 30, 2017

10 miles NW

Hairspray is a family-friendly musical about a teenager who becomes a celebrity on a TV dance show, “piled bouffant high with laughter, romance, and deliriously tuneful songs” at Windy City Music Theatre. Discount tickets $14.


April 12, 2017 (7 p.m.)

3 miles west

Watch the Chicago Bulls play against the Brooklyn Nets at the United Center. Discount tickets $28 to $95.

Racy movies

April 14 - 15, 2017 (7 & 9:30 p.m.)

6 miles north

Hump! is 18 five-minute movies by amateurs of all persuasions at Music Box Theatre.

Easter at the arboretum

April 14 - 15, 2017 (SOLD OUT)

27 miles west

Enjoy Breakfast with the Bunny on Friday and Saturday, or on Sunday there is a fine Easter Brunch buffet on Sunday at Morton Arboretum in Lisle.

Country music brunch

April 15, 2017 (12 to 5 p.m.)

0.7 miles west

Your ticket to Country Day Party includes a brunch buffet with beer, Bloody Marys, and mimosas plus live country music at Old Crow Smokehouse for age 21+. Discount tickets $25.

1/4 marathon

April 15, 2017 (9:15 a.m.)

2 miles south

Chicago Quarter Marathon begins at Upper Hutchinson Field in Grant Park and goes along the lakeshore, followed by treats and live entertainment.

Easter at Lincoln Park Zoo

April 15, 2017 (8 a.m. to 1 p.m.)

2.5 miles north

Eat breakfast with the Easter Bunny, hunt for eggs, visit animals, and ride the train & carousel (if it’s dry) at the Easter Egg-Stravaganza at Lincoln Park Zoo.

Rockin’ race & egg hunt

April 15, 2017

6.8 miles north

Bunny Rock at Montrose Harbor features 1980s rock music, a 5K run/walk at 9 a.m., a petting zoo, and a giant egg hunt for ages 2 to 10 at 10:15 a.m.

Swedish Easter buffet

April 15, 2017 (5 p.m.)

7.6 miles north

Påskmiddag is a family-friendly event with a smörgåsbord and indoor Easter egg hunt at the Swedish American Museum.

Party cruise

April 15, 21, 28, 2017 (8:30 p.m.)

0.7 miles east

A Booze Cruise aboard the Anita Dee II offers amazing views from the top deck, dancing, and a cash bar, departing from 200 N Breakwater Access for age 21+. Discount tickets $25.

Films about Palestine

April 15 - May 4, 2017

0.5 mile SW

The Chicago Palestine Film Festival exhibits and promotes films by Palestinian directors as well as films about Palestine at the Gene Siskel Film Center.

Easter restaurants

April 16, 2017

Chicago locations

OpenTable lists restaurants that offer special menus for Easter.

Easter dining cruise

April 16, 2017

1 mile east

Odyssey Cruises offers a brunch cruise with the Easter bunny, and a dinner cruise departing from Navy Pier.

Easter in the garden

April 16, 2017

24 miles north

Enjoy a festive Easter Egg Brunch and bring a basket for the Easter egg hunt at the Chicago Botanic Garden in Glencoe.

Movies and music festival

April 20 - 23, 2017

5 miles NW

The Chicago International Movies & Music Festival (CIMMfest) is “where movies and music meet.” See films with a music connection by day, and hear live music with a film connection by night at Wicker Park and Logan Square.

Latino film festival

April 20 - May 4, 2017

Chicago locations

See 100+ films from Latin America, Brazil, Spain, and Portugal during the Chicago Latino Film Festival at AMC River East 21 theaters and venue partners throughout Chicagoland.

Whisky festival

April 21, 2017

0.2 miles SE

Taste 300 whiskeys, and learn from master distillers and blenders at WhiskyFest at Hyatt Regency Chicago.

Baseball & fireworks

April 21, 2017 (7:10 p.m.)

5.5 miles south

Watch the White Sox play the Cleveland Indians followed by fireworks at U.S. Cellular Field. Discount tickets $9 to $39.

Creativity expo

April 21 - 22, 2017

0.4 miles south

Hear experts speak about art, fashion, film, food, and music at Lake FX Summit + Expo (formerly called Chicago Music/Film/Fashion+ Summit) at Chicago Cultural Center. Free.

Teen literature festival

April 21 - 22, 2017

1 mile south

Teenagers express themselves and attend workshops at ChiTeen Lit Fest at Columbia College Chicago. Free but RSVP on their website.

Comic and Entertainment Expo

April 21 - 23, 2017

3 miles south

Chicago Comic and Entertainment Expo (C2E2) is a convention for fans of comics, graphic novels, anime, manga, video games, toys, movies, and pop culture at McCormick Place.

Audio expo

April 21 - 23, 2017

15.9 miles NW

Audio Expo North America (AXPONA) features 400 vendors of high-end audio (headphones, speakers, turntables, musical instruments, amps, and vinyl), plus 125 listening rooms, live concerts, and lectures by industry leaders at The Westin O’Hare in Rosemont.

Modern pop festival

April 21 - 29, 2017

10 miles north

International Pop Overthrow (IPO) is a cutting-edge pop and rock music festival based in Los Angeles that brings dozens of the latest bands to The Red Line Tap.

Mexican children’s day

April 22, 2017

2.8 miles SW

Celebrate Mexican culture and family health at Día del Niño Family Festival. Begin with a two-mile walk from the National Museum of Mexican Art to UIC Pavilion. Continue with games, art, and activities. Free.

Silent films + live music

April 22, 2017 (7:30 p.m.)

7.2 miles north

Watch modern silent films as a new score is played live at Sound of Silent Film Festival at Music Box Theater.

Charity dinner

April 22, 2017 (6 to 9:30 p.m.)

16.2 miles NW

Hunger to Hope includes a three-course dinner, live music, an international craft market, and a live auction at the convention center in Rosemont.

Chocolate & wine tasting

April 22 - 23, 2017

2.2 miles west

Chicago Artisan Chocolate Show has lectures, demonstrations, exhibitors, and tastings at Stephen Bailey Auditorium. Discount tickets $20.

Home show in Wheaton

April 22 - 23, 2017

27 miles west

Find renovation help at The DuPage County Home Improvement & Landscaping Expo at DuPage County Fairgrounds in Wheaton.

Gluten-free expo

April 22 - 23, 2017

28 miles NW

Sample and purchase products from 100 vendors at Gluten Free & Allergen Friendly Expo, which also offers classes at the Schaumburg Convention Center. Discount tickets $7.50.

Pig feast

April 23, 2017

1.9 miles west

Cochon is a culinary competition that features a stand-up tasting of dozens of chef-prepared dishes paired with wine, beer, and cocktails at Morgan Mfg.

Money week

April 23 - 30, 2017

Chicago locations

Money Smart Week is a series of classes and activities designed to help you better manage your personal finances. Search for events near your zip code. Free.

Hilarious play

April 25 - May 28, 2017

31 miles north

Winner of a best play Tony Award, Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike is a zany farce about a dysfunctional family with themes and characters from Chekhov in Lake Forest. Discount weekday tickets $6 to $18.

Joffrey Ballet

April 26 - May 7, 2017

1 mile south

World-famous Joffrey Ballet performs Global Visionaries, three works by choreographers from Sweden, Russia, and the Netherlands at Auditorium Theatre. Discount tickets $43 to $80.

Cocktail evening

April 27, 2017 (6:30 to 10 p.m.)

1.7 miles NW

A ticket to Chicago Cocktail Social gets you premium cocktails made by bartenders from 17 establishments, gourmet food, and live music at Galleria Marchetti.

Wine tasting

April 27, 2017 (6:30 to 9:30 p.m.)

8 miles NW

Sample wine plus hors d’oeuvres on the Spring Wine Stroll in the shops of Lincoln Square and Ravenswood. Repeats in Nov.

My Fair Lady

April 28, 2017 (7 p.m.)

1 mile SW

Lerner & Loewe wrote My Fair Lady, a musical about a Cockney woman who takes speech lessons on a bet to see if she can pass as a lady, at the Civic Opera House. Discount tickets $43 to $131.

Famous speakers

April 28 - 30, 2017

Chicago locations

Hear today’s leading authors, thinkers, and fashion icons speak at the Springfest organized by the Chicago Humanities Festival.

Crafts fair

April 28 - 30, 2017

1 mile west

One of a Kind Show and Sale features handmade crafts by 300 artists, food, and entertainment at the Merchandise Mart. Repeats in Dec. Discount tickets $5.

Bach festival

April 28 - May 7, 2017

Chicago locations

Bach Week Festival is a series of three classical music concerts in North Chicago and Evanston on April 28, May 5, and May 7.

Spirits tasting crawl

April 29, 2017 (11:30 a.m. & 3 p.m.)

0.5 miles west

Taste a variety of tequilas and sangrias, and then vote for your favorites at Chicago Tequila & Sangria Festival at Joe’s Bar for age 21+.

Freaky carnival show

April 29, 2017

2.6 miles south

The Midnight Cabaret by Carnivale Delirium is a “neo-vintage circus sideshow extravaganza” with live music, DJs, and performers at Reggies Chicago for age 18+.

Zombie Pub Crawl

April 29, 2017 (2 p.m.)

8 miles north

Zombie Pub Crawl for adults begins at the pH Comedy Theater in Andersonville.

Meet the authors

April 29 - May 11, 2017

13 miles north

Evanston Literary Festival includes a dozen author readings and workshops on its schedule. Free.

Greek parade

April 30, 2017 (2 p.m.)

1.5 miles west

The annual Greek Independence Day Parade begins at N. Halsted Street & Randolph Street. Free.
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© April 2017 calendar of events in Chicago, IL. Best events, fairs, festivals, and things to do in Chicago, Illinois. ord-04