Chicago Festivals and Events for July 5-8, 2012: Cool Calendar of Hot Happenings.

Chicago Festivals and Events for July 5-8, 2012: Cool Calendar of Hot Happenings.

Chicago, Thursday, July 5, 2012. If you've survived the Fourth of July Celebrations and are ready for more...here's your ticket to upcoming events for this sizzling summer weekend.

FESTIVALS.

  • African/Caribbean International Festival of Life. The festival of world music opened on the Fourth. IFOL offers food vendors, an African marketplace and a kids tent. July 4-8, Washington Park,  55th Street and Cottage Grove Avenue; $10-$15, $5 for seniors and children 6-12; 312-427-0266.
  • Rock Around the Block on July 7-8 in Chicago's Lakeview neighborhood offers a great vibe with food, drink and entertainment in the Lincoln and Belmont area. Suggested donation, $5.
  • West Fest happens on July 7-8 in the West Town, Ukrainian Village part of the city around the Empty Bottle. West Fest also has a Kid Fest, a DJ stage with Flosstradamus, Derrick Carter and Justin Reed and a main platform helmed by the Black Lips.  2000 W. Chicago Ave.; 312-850-9390. Suggested donation $5.
  • The Family Fun Festival returned to Millennium Park this summer on July 2. The daily fest for kids of all ages (and their parents/caretakers) continues through September 2 between 10a.m. and 3p.m. with family performances and hands-on activities in the Family Fun Tent.
  • Arlington Heights' Frontier Days kicked off the 4th of July and continues through July 9.
  • Milwaukee Summerfest, the World's Largest Music Fest continues through July 8. On the lakefront, 200 N. Harbor Dr. Milwaukee, $16 General Admission, big name acts cost extra.
  • This year’s Taste of Chicago (with street closures already in place) kicks off next Wednesday July 11 through Sunday, July 15 in Grant Park with headline entertainment, celebrity chefs and a full array of  five-day restaurants and menu items, including new this year, Pop-Ups.

ART FESTS.

  • Lincoln Park Arts and Music Festival comes to the Lincoln Park neighborhood, July 7,8 art with juried works of art from nearly 80 participants along Racine Avenue from Webster to Fullerton Avenues. The fourth annual event also features live music by Sister Hazel and other acts, plus food vendors and a kids area with inflatables and activities. The fest is open until 10 p.m. Saturday; 9 p.m. Sunday.
  • 21st Annual Chicago Tribune North Michigan Avenue Art Festival will take place Friday, July 6 through Sunday, July 8 on Pioneer Court. The fest features an eclectic mix of original artwork from over 300 juried artist from 30 different states including the finest talent from the greater Chicago area.  Prices are set to suit all budgets and range from $25 hand designed earrings to $30,000 metal life size sculptures.Admission is free and open to the public. 10a.m. to 6p.m.
  • An Art Festival at Chicago Botanic Gardens will take place Friday, July 6 through Sunday, July 8. The show featuring 100 juried artists on the beautiful Esplanade overlooking the gardens and water. Lake-Cook Rd. exit on Edens. exit east about a half mile to entrance. Glencoe.

MUSIC.

  • Loops And Variations summer series continues this Thursday, July 5 at 6:30p.m. in Millennium Park with the Third Coast Percussion.
  • The Grant Park Music Festival will perform Fridays at 6:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. On tap for this weekend, Sleepers and Dreamers, a world premiere by Sebastian Currier.
  • Idol for a Day Concert features American Idol Finalist Season 10, Casey Abrams performing a free concert in MB Financial Park at Rosemont Saturday, July 7 as part of a live band karaoke event, "Idol for a Day." The karaoke event will take place from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.  Abrams will be on hand to sign autographs from 4 - 5 p.m. and will perform live in MB Financial Park at Rosemont from 5:15 - 6p.m.

Other events in MB Financial Park at Rosemont:

Friday and Saturday, July 6 and 7 at 9 p.m. watch“Movies Under the Stars,”a free movie series, will show popular comedies and other favorites on a projector screen in the great lawn at the center of MB Financial Park at Rosemont. Bring a blanket or chair. Admission is free. Food and drinks will be available from restaurants within the complex including Five Roses Pub, Kings Lanes, Lounge & Sports and Adobe Gila’s. Patrons are not permitted to bring pets, coolers, food or beverage into the park.

FILM.

  • Universal Pictures: Celebrating 100 Years kicks off  this Sunday, July 8 through August 2, at the Gene Siskel Film Center.  Celebrating 100 Years is the first part of a two-part observance of the studio's centennial. On tap are features including All Quiet on the Western Front, Dracula, The Mummy, The Birds, sex farces, and Jaws which still dominates the industry today. Special Deal: Sunday Double-Bill Discount! Buy a ticket for the first Universal Pictures film on any Sunday in July, and get a ticket for the second Universal film that day at this discount rate (tickets must be purchased at the same time): $7/general admission; $6/students; $4/Film Center members. (This discount rate applies to the second film only. Discount rate available only at the Film Center box office.) 164 N. State.
  • The highly popular summer series Movies in the Park continues this weekend with free movies in Chicago Parks. Bring a blanket or chairs and pack a picnic for a fun evening.

THEATER.

Cool off and enjoy Chicago's expansive selection of summer theater at any of the following air-conditioned venues:
Timeline Theatre Company presents the world premiere of John Conroy’s My Kind of Town through July 29, 2012.
Steppenwolf Theatre presents Three Sisters through August 19, 2012.
Sideshow Theatre Company presents the world premiere of The Gacy Play by Calamity West at Theater Wit through July 29, 2012.
Lookingglass Theatre’s new musical Eastland begins performances at the Water Tower Water Works through August 19, 2012.
Jackie Taylor’s original work, The Story of Marvin Gaye “Don’t Talk About My Father Because God Is My Friend,” performs at the Black Ensemble Theatre through August 19 2012.
The Blonde, the Brunette and the Vengeful Redhead, featuring Deborah Staples, performs at Writers’ Theatre in Glencoe through July 29, 2012.
Regina Taylor’s hit musical Crowns plays at the Goodman’s Albert Theatre through August 5, 2012.
The Chicago premiere of Luis Alfaro’s Oedipus El Rey runs at the Victory Gardens Biograph Theater through July 29, 2012.
Raven Theatre Company presents Eric Simonson’s adaptation of Bang the Drum Slowly through July 14, 2012.
The smash hit, Pinkalicious: The Musical, extended through August 5, 2012 at the Broadway Playhouse.
Chicago Shakespeare Theater presents Disney’s Beauty and the Beast on Navy Pier through August 26, 2012.
The hit musical, Million Dollar Quartet, continues in its fourth year at the Apollo Theater, on-going.
The Second City’s History of Chicago will continue through the summer at Up Comedy Club.
The hit show Blue Man Group performs at the Briar Street Theatre in Lakeview. on-going.
The House Theatre’s Death and Harry Houdini returns to the Chopin Theatre through August 17, 2012

LOOKING AHEAD.

•    Irish American Heritage Festival: July 13-15, Irving Park.
•    Pitchfork: July 13-15, Union Park.
•    Windy City RibFest: July 13-15, Uptown.
•    DuSable Museum Arts & Crafts Festival: July 14-15, Washington Park.
•    Chinatown Summer Fair: July 15, Chinatown.
•    Square Roots: July 20-22, Lincoln Square.
•    Taste of River North: July 20-22, River North.
•    Summer on Southport: July 21-22, Lakeview.
•    Sheffield Garden Walk & Festival: July 21-22, Lincoln Park.
•    Fiesta del Sol: July 26-28, Pilsen.
•    Wicker Park Fest: July 28-29, Wicker Park.
•    Taste of Lincoln Avenue: July 28-29, Lincoln Park.

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