Chicago Fests and Events June 28 to July 1, 2012: World's Largest Block Party, Gold Coast Art Fair, Craft Beer and More.

Chicago Fests and Events June 28 to July 1, 2012: World's Largest Block Party, Gold Coast Art Fair, Craft Beer and More.

Chicago, Thursday, June 28, 2012. An eclectic mix of events are on this week's Cultural Calendar from fests, to the Paris Ballet to the World's Largest Block Party and the World's Largest Music Festival (Summerfest Milwaukee). With temperatures flirting with the 100 degree mark, there's no doubt about it--summer has arrived in haute style.

CITY FESTS.

Old St. Pat's World's Largest Block Party, June 29-30, West Loop, Madison and DesPlaines, $45 ($40 in advance), includes drinks. 5:30p.m.-10:30p.m.
Craft Beer Festival, Friday, June 29-Sunday, July 1, 2012, 1633 N. Cleveland. Head to St. Michael in Old Town for this festival showcasing Midwest craft beers. In addition to the brews there's great music, food, arts and crafts and more
Gold Coast Art Fair/Festival, Saturday,  June 30-Sunday, July 1, Grant Park, Butler Field, 10a.m.-6p.m..
Wavefront Music Festival, Saturday, June 30 and Sunday, July 1, Montrose Beach. Keep your cool at this two day all ages beachfront music festival featuring electronic dance music, food, drinks and more.  Noon to dark.
Hyde Park Summerfest, June 30-July 1, 53rd Street between Harper & Kimbark Avenues.

MUSIC.

Grant Park Music Festival – Millennium Park (FREE), Friday, 6:30p.m. and Saturday, 7:30p.m.

Loops And Variations, Thursday, 6:30 p.m., Millennium Park, Jay Pritzker Pavilion. Eighth blackbird (June 28). Free.

Ravinia Festival.

Thursday, June 28, Glen Campbell Goodbye Tour with Ronnie Milsap.
Friday, June 29, Colbie Callet and Gavin DeGraw.
Saturday, Sarah McLachlan.

DANCE
The Paris Opera Ballet, Harris Theatre, June 28 through July 1. For the first time since 1948 the full 154-member company comes to the Windy City. They will perform two diverse programs—Giselle, and a program of mixed repertoire to include Suite en blanc by Serge Lifar, Roland Petit’s L’Arlésienne, and Le Boléro by Maurice Béjart—accompanied by the Grant Park Orchestra.

SPORTS.

The L.A.T.E. Ride, Saturday night/Sunday morning, July 1. Join 10,000 other bikers for a 25-mile ride through downtown Chicago. Buckingham Fountain, $45, pre-register at Late Ride.

SUBURBAN FESTS.

Eyes to the Skies Balloon Festival, Lisle,  Thursday, June 28 through Sunday, July 1.

Barrington's 4th of July Fest, Friday, June 29 through Wednesday, July 4.

Naperville Ribfest, Friday, June 29 through July 3 (Fireworks, July 3).

MILWAUKEE SUMMERFEST.

The World's Largest Music fest, just a short drive from Chi-town, is the place to be for music fans, now through July 1 and July 3 through July 8. Eleven days of music from the Foo Fighters to Josh Thompson and Sunny Sweeney--over 700 of the nation's hottest bands will perform--plus food, drink, family activities, fireworks and a carnival. On the lakefront, 200 N. Harbor Dr. Milwaukee, $16 General Admission, big name acts cost extra.

FIREWORKS.

Navy Pier, Saturday 10:15p.m. and Wednesday, July 4, 2012, 9:00p.m.

Summerfest Milwaukee, big show, July 3, 9:30p.m., 200 N. Harbor Dr.

EXPLORE CHICAGO TOURS.

Discover the best of Chicago's history, culture and cuisines on insider tours of the city and its diverse neighborhoods with a Chicago Neighborhood Explore Chicago Tour. This weeks tours:

June 28     Historic Parks & Boulevards, 10a.m.

June 29     Lincoln Park, Lakeview & Wrigleyville, 10a.m..

June 30     Hyde Park & Kenwood, 10a.m..

MUSEUM EXHIBITIONS.

Escape into a whole new world at Chicago’s renowned museums. With a diverse collection of over 40 institutions around the city, Chicago offers incredible opportunities to discover treasures of art, science, history and culture at exhibits across the city.
•    Art Institute of Chicago – Roy Lichtenstein: Retrospective of a Leading Pop Artist.
•    Chicago Children’s Museum – Circus Zirkus.
•    Chicago History Museum – Chicago: Crossroads of America.
•    DuSable Museum of African American History – Buried Treasures: Art in African American Museums.
•    Field Museum – Genghis Kahn: The Exhibition.
•    Museum of Contemporary Art – Skyscraper: Art and Architecture Against Gravity.
•    Museum of Science & Industry – MythBusters: The Explosive Exhibition Uncovers Truth or Myth.
•    National Museum of Mexican Art – El alma de la Fiesta.
•    Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum – Bikes! The Green Revolution.

THEATER OPENING THIS WEEK.

"RAIN: A Tribute to the Beatles". The touring musical production that re-creates a concert by the Fab Four is in Chicago for a short run, now through July 1. Oriental Theatre, 24 W. Randolph St.; $35-$75 at 800-775-2000.

"Hero: A New Musical". Michael Mahler and Aaron Thielen's new musical. Through August 19 at Marriott Theatre, 10 Marriott Drive, Lincolnshire; $45-$48 at 847-634-0200.

Soul Theatre brings Harold Pinter’s comedic one-act  The Lover, directed by Paul Wagar, to A Red Orchid Theatre, opens today through July 15, 2012. 1531 N. Wells St. in Chicago.  THE LOVER features Ravi BatistaCarl Lindberg and Mick Weber.

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