Outdoor activities to do around town this summer – NBC Chicago
As Chicago sees warmer weather and an increase in COVID-19 vaccinations, outdoor events and activities are back to full swing this summer.
From beaches to farmers’ markets, Chicagoans will likely get a taste of normalcy as businesses and events reopen across the city in Phase 5.
Take a look at what to do in and around the city this summer:
Visit a farmers market
As the city continues with its plan to reopen, Chicago’s farmers markets have started welcoming residents again for the 2021 season.
While some markets have not announced official plans for a summer reopening, others have released schedules and information regarding upcoming launches after last year’s closures due to the COVID pandemic.
Watch a baseball game
Take a trip to the south or north sides of Chicago to catch a White Sox or Cubs game, as fans can now fill the stands.
Wrigley Field has announced that it will allow full capacity for Cubs games starting June 11, with the Guaranteed Rate Field still able to accommodate a limited number of fans until further notice. Both teams continue to implement COVID mitigation measures, with more for those who are not vaccinated.
Spend the weekend at Chicago’s iconic Lollapalooza Music Festival
Chicago’s largest music festival will be held at full capacity from July 29 to August 1 this year in Grant Park after the event was postponed to 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Organizers said a full COVID-19 vaccination or negative test results within 24 hours before attending the festival will be required for admission, in line with current public health guidelines.
The festival released one-day tickets this week, as well as the daily lineup of performances. Four-day passes for the weekend event were released last month.
See an outdoor concert in Ravinia
Ravinia Festival has announced its summer concert lineup, preparing to reopen the park for the first time in over a year for a 2021 season in person.
The summer lineup will include 64 performances between July 1 and September 26, organizers said, and will be the 85th season in Ravinia’s history as the country’s oldest outdoor music festival.
Some of the pop, rock, indie, country and reggae artists featured this year include:
- Classic Albums Live: Led Zeppelin IV, July 24
- Yacht Rock Revue debuts in Ravinia on July 31
- Sideline debuts at Ravinia, August 11 – Carousel concert
- Willie Nelson and his family and Nate Smith, August 14
- Gladys Knight, August 18
- The Infamous Stringdusters and Leftover Salmon in their Ravinia debut on August 20
- Les Beach Boys, August 21 and 22
- John Hiatt and the Jerry Douglas Band, August 24
- Lake Street Dive, August 26
- Train, August 27 and 28
- King Crimson and The Zappa Band debut in Ravinia on August 29
- Collective Soul, Better Than Ezra and Tonic share the bill on September 1st
- Indigo Girls and Ani DiFranco, September 10
- Black Violin and Blind Boys of Alabama, September 11
- Ben Folds with the Ravinia Festival Orchestra, September 18
- Ziggy Marley: A Celebration of Bob Marley, September 19
- Andrew Bird, September 24
This year, all concerts will be shorter, with no intermission, and will take place outdoors in the open-air, reduced-capacity pavilion. Tickets must be reserved in advance and remote seats will be used throughout the property.
Tickets for the general public will go on sale on The Ravinia site in two stages: June 16 for concerts between July 1 and August 15, then July 21 for concerts after August 15.
Head north for Summerfest 2021 to see Luke Bryan, Miley Cyrus, the Jonas Brothers and more
Summerfest, Milwaukee’s popular music festival, has released its lineup for the 2021 event, which will take place over three weekends in September this year and bring big names to Wisconsin.
The Jonas Brothers, Dave Matthews Band, Luke Bryan, Chance the Rapper, Chris Stapleton, Miley Cyrus and Zac Brown Band are among the headliners /.
Summerfest typically takes place from late June to early July each year, but has been pushed back to September this year to allow more time for the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine, organizers said.
The festival will now take place over three weekends: September 2-4, 9-11 and 16-18, with launch concerts on previous Wednesdays. Tickets are on sale now.
Spend a day at a Chicago festival
As Chicago continues to reopen, a comeback of new and old music festivals is expected to make a comeback this summer. Here are the ones we know so far:
For more festivals taking place in the Chicago area, click here.
Listen to local artists on an evening in the parks
The 9th season re-launch of Night Out in the Parks this summer will feature over 100 talented Chicago artists and organizations performing at over 350 outdoor cultural arts events.
This year’s experience will reconnect diverse audiences across Chicago’s 77 community areas with the arts and cultural landscape of the city. Film screenings in 100 parks will begin July 6 at Oakdale Park in the community of Washington Heights. For more information visit www.nightoutintheparks.com.
Take a space trip with Art on theMart
For those who prefer to stay outside to see art, the 2021 season of Art on theMart runs through July 4, with the new digital production “Astrographics” in partnership with the Adler Planetarium.
The 16-minute digital light performance explores outer space, featuring an array of planets, stars and other landmarks, according to a statement. Art on theMart officials said the show would show how humans imagine their worlds over time.
Take a swing at Maggie Daley Park miniature golf course
The 18-hole Chicago-themed miniature golf course and Maggie Daley Park’s ribbon are open daily. In summer, the ribbon changes to welcome users of scooters, rollerblades and roller skates. Weekend rentals are now available.
The park will offer daily rentals starting May 28. The Maggie Daley Park concessions will also be open. For more details on Maggie Daley Park activities, visit www.maggiedaleypark.com.
Browse a Chicago art fair
In addition to indoor art exhibitions in Chicago, outdoor art fairs in the city district will also welcome visitors. Here are the ones we know so far:
Enjoy a bite to eat al fresco at one of the city’s outdoor dining areas
As the city warms up over the next few months, Chicagoans will likely be looking for places to drink and dine al fresco. The city is known for its food scene, filled with numerous patios and rooftops.
Choose Chicago has offered a list of places that currently offer outdoor dining in Chicago. Here are some highlights:
Avli Tavern: 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 Street
The duck inn: 2701 S. Eleanor Street
Theater on the lake: 2401 N. Lake Shore Dr.
Beatnik on the river: 180 N. Upper Wacker Dr.
BOKA: 1729 N. Halsted St.
Formento: 925 W. Randolph St.
Siena Tavern: 51 W. Kinzie St.
Offshore: 1000 E Grand Avenue
Wood: 3335 N. Halsted St.
Happy camper: 1209 N. Wells St.
Tzuco: 720 N. State St.
LuxBar: 18 E. Bellevue Pl.
Drive through a Dino Safari
Fox Valley Mall was transformed into Pangea National Park this month, with more than 40 life-size dinosaurs, organizers say.
From Triceratops to T. Rex, Dino Safari takes guests on a journey, learning how dinosaurs have evolved over time, where they lived and what their lives were like.
The company recommends advance ticket booking, which start at $ 49.95 per vehicle.
Navigate through a Chicago architecture tour
Admire the city’s iconic architecture as you cruise along the Chicago River on one of the many 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 mitigation measures, the Boat trips to Wendella require passengers to wear face coverings when on board the ship and practice social distancing.
Watch the fireworks light up Chicago’s iconic Navy Pier
To celebrate the reopening, Navy Pier will also host a 10-minute fireworks display every Saturday in May. Shows are scheduled to start at 9 p.m. and guests will be allowed to view the exhibits from the open spaces of Navy Pier.
During the initial reopening phase, Navy Pier will be open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. New rides will open in “the coming weeks” and the rest of Navy Pier will reopen “sometime in May”.
Guests will be required to wear a facial mark at all times and encouraged to keep a distance of six feet between other people who are not part of the same group. All Pier Park rides and attractions will operate at a limited capacity and will be cleaned after each use, according to Navy Pier.
Hit the beaches
Memorial Day weekend marks the reopening of Chicago beaches, a major summer signal is on the way.
The more than two dozen beaches along the shores of Lake Michigan will reopen on Friday, said Mike Kelly, superintendent and CEO of the Chicago Park District. The city’s beaches were closed during the summer of 2020 in accordance with COVID-19 restrictions.
Kayaking on the Chicago River
Visit a Rainbow Cone Ice Cream Truck
The city’s iconic Rainbow Cone ice cream shop is taking to the streets this summer with trucks already plying the Chicago area.
Four Rainbow Cones on wheels, each truck named after one of the colorful ice cream layers, can be found at various locations around the city and suburbs.
For the rest of the week, two trucks will be in Mount Prospect and Bolingbrook from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m.