This weekend, the Chicago Air & Water Show takes over the city's lakefront and skies. But, this being Chicago, there's always more to do than just enjoy one festival. As usual, there is no shortage of great family-friendly events taking place in the city and the surrounding area all weekend long.
Here is the Raising World Citizens list of the top five multicultural events for families in Chicago this weekend - Friday, August 15, Saturday, August 16, and Sunday, August 17:
1. Festa Italiana
West Taylor St., between Ashland and Racine (Little Italy)
Thursday, August 14, 5 - 10 pm
Friday, August 15 and Saturday, August 16, 12 - 11 pm
Sunday, August 17, 12 - 10 pm
$5 suggested donation
Festa Italiana celebrates the history and heritage of Chicago’s Historic Little Italy. The four-day street festival features live music, Italian food, bocce, and local artisans - all along the streets of the vibrant Italian neighborhood. Families will enjoy a children's area with rides, games and more. You can check out photos from my family's visit to last year's festival.
Interested in information on other places to visit in Chicago's Little Italy Italy? Then, be sure to check out my family-friendly virtual tour of the neighborhood.
2. Festival Cubano
Riis Park, 6100 W. Fullerton Ave. (Belmont-Crain)
Friday, August 15, 2 - 10 pm
Saturday, August 16, 10 am - 10 pm
Sunday, August 17, 10 am - 10 pm
$10 at the gate before 5 pm
$15 at the gate after 5 pm
Kids ages 12 and under are Free
The 5th Annual Festival Cubano celebrates Cuban culture. The three-day festival features entertainment, merchandise and food from across Latin America. Attendees also can enjoy a carnival ride and game area, domino tournament, and rumba and drumming workshops. Families will enjoy the festival's Kids Zone, which includes a kids stage with entertainment, a petting zoo, conga and rumba workshops, and more.
3. Albany Park World Fest
W. Lawrence Ave. and N. Kimball Ave. (Albany Park)
Saturday, August 16, 12 - 10 pm
Sunday, August 17, 12 - 9 pm
$5 suggested donation
The first-ever Albany Park World Fest celebrates the many cultures represented in the diverse Chicago neighborhood. According to event organizers, more than 70 languages are spoken in the neighborhood and its restaurants and store feature food and goods from more than 40 countries around the world. The two-day festival will feature diverse music, ethnic cuisine, global arts and crafts, a kids area, and more.
4. Malott Japanese Garden Summer Festival
Chicago Botanic Garden
1000 Lake Cook Road (Glencoe, Ill.)
Saturday, August 16 and Sunday, August 17, 10 am – 2 pm
Free with Chicago Botanic Garden admission
This weekend, you can learn about Japanese summer festivals (matsuri) at the Chicago Botanic Garden. During the two-day Malott Japanese Garden Summer Festival, you can listen Taiko drum and Koto harp music, watch a tea ceremony, and hear traditional folktales. Children also will enjoy being able to make fish prints (gyotaku), paper fans (uchiwa), and kites to help celebrate summer.
5. Festival of the Horse & Drum
Kane County Fairground
525 South Randall Rd. (St. Charles, Ill.)
Saturday, August 16, 9 am - 10 pm
Sunday, August 17, 9 am - 7 pm
$15 adults, $7 kids ages 6 - 15, kids 5 and under are free
Tickets are available for purchase online
Calling all horse lovers! The Festival of the Horse & Drum takes over the Kane County Fairground this weekend. The two-day event, billed as the "United Nations of Horses and Humans," is the only multicultural, multimedia equestrian festival in the US. It offers a family-friendly environment for people of all ages to enjoy and celebrate horses. During the event, you can visit various "villages," including Cowboy Town, Renaissance Faire, Muchacha Salsa Fiesta Village, Equine Abilities Expo, and Giddy-Up Model Horse Show. There's also a Kids Corral and a Horse-A-Palooza stage. The complete schedule is available online.
Summertime road trip inspiration:
Interested in heading out on a summertime road trip? Then, this weekend is the perfect time to hop in your car and head north to Lake Geneva, Wis. Now under way is the city's 52nd Annual Venetian Festival. The event began on Wednesday, August 13 and continues through Sunday, August 17.
Throughout the event, you can enjoy a carnival, craft fair, brat stand, live music, and more. On Sunday, you can watch a water ski show at 6 pm, which will be followed by a Venetian boat parade. The evening's festivities culminate with a fireworks display at 9 pm.
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