Of course, now that's officially fall in Chicago, we get a resurgence of summer temperatures this weekend. But, most Chicagoans will never complain about the weather - at least when it's warm and sunny. We all know what's lurking just around the corner from November, right?
So, with the forecast bringing us all sun and around 80 degrees, here is my list of the top five events for families to enjoy in Chicago (and two suburbs) this weekend:
1. Design Harvest Festival
Grand Ave. between Damen and Wood Avenues (West Town)
Sat., Sept. 28 and Sun., Sept. 29
$5 suggested donation
The 4th annual Design Harvest Festival offers a sea of local home and garden vendors from across chicago. Up and down this stretch of Grand Ave., you can find a wide variety of wares including furniture, vintage goods and antiques. To compensate for time spent shopping, parents can let their children enjoy a variety of fun kid-friendly activities and everyone can smile along on a family hay ride.
2. Donley's Wild West Town's Fall Festival
8152 S. Union Rd., Union, Ill. (McHenry County)
Sat., Sept. 28 - Sun., Sept. 29 (Fall Festival takes place weekends through Oct. 27)
Tickets are $16
This Saturday marks the return of the Fall Festival to Donley's Wild West Town out in Union, Ill. The annual festival offers families a variety of Halloween festivities including spooky train rides, monster-ific singing and dancing, pumpkin-painting contests, and more. You also can enjoy seasonal treats like fresh pies, muffins and cookies.
3. Edgewater Fall Art Fair
On Granville Ave. between Broadway and Winthrop (Edgewater)
Sat., Sept. 8 and Sun., Sept. 29
$5 suggested donation
Artisans descend upon Edgewater this weekend with at the neighborhood's Fall Art Fair. The street fair features more than local artists showcasing original paintings, photographs, jewelry, pottery and more. Families should be sure to head to the Children's Activity Corner at the northeast corner of Broadway and Granville. There, children ages 1 - 12 years old, will be able to help create a sidewalk chalk mural, have fun at a finger paiting station, and enjoy a rotating schedule of entertainment and workshops that include live balloon artistry, mask making, story time and face painting.
4. Long Grove Apple Festival
Downtown Long Grove Historic District, Old McHenry Rd. & Robert Parker Coffin Rd. (Lake County)
Fri., Sept. 17 - Sun., Sept. 29
$5 admission for adults (children 12 and under are free)
You know it's fall when it's time to celebrate all things apple at the Long Grove Apple Festival in suburban Long Grove. This weekend, the quaint, picturesque town will be filled with stores and tents selling everything from apple pies to caramel apple lattes. The family-friendly event offers an apple pie eating contest, pony rides, kiddie rides, face painting and more. New this year, festival goers can stroll through the village in search of the Historic Downtown District's Amazing Scarecrows.
5. Oktoberfest Chicago
St. Alphonsus Roman Catholic Church, 1429 W. Wellington Ave (Lakeview)
Fri., Sept. 27 - Sun., Sept. 29
$5 admission (Free admission on Sunday - Family Day)
The Oktoberfest celebrations in Chicago continue! This weekend you can get your fill of bratwurst, pretzels, music and beer (for the adults of course) at the Oktoberfest celebration at St. Alponsus Roman Catholic Church in Lakeview. Sunday morning (11 a.m. - 2 p.m.) families can enjoy Kinderfest with crafts, a bouncy house, obstacle course, and more.
What other events do you plan to check out with your family this weekend? Please share your own list in the comments below.