Show Me Chicago's top 12 things to do in Chicago this weekend & beyond

1. Auto Show

February 11-20, McCormick Place

VW's concept the I.D. Buzz

VW’s concept the I.D. Buzz

The Chicago Auto Show brings 1,000 vehicles to McCormick Place from electric and concept cars to driverless cars and more from February 11-20. Free-$13. McCormick Place, 2301 S. Lake Shore Drive.

2. Speed dating via the Centennial Wheel

Thursday, February 9

The Centennial Wheel. Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

The Centennial Wheel. Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

Calling all singles for Speed Dating on the Centennial Wheel at Navy Pier on Thursday, February 9 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

It’s a chance to meet a lot of people and maybe find a new love interest–just in time for Valentine’s Day.

The event kicks off from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. with a special cocktail reception at Navy Pier’s new craft cocktail bar, Tiny Tavern with Valentine’s Day-themed drink specials and appetizers. At 8 p.m., participants will make their way to Pier Park to begin speed dating on the Centennial Wheel. Each gondola will hold one to two couples, who will “date” for one full rotation before moving on to the subsequent gondola.

The $40 package also includes a special Navy Pier date package for a bunch of freebies from a cruise aboard the Odyssey to a ticket to the Chicago Flower & Garden Show and special dining offers.

Attention all guys: The Speed Dating event needs more of you–since at this point more women have signed up–so this is your chance.

3. National Ferris Wheel Day

Tuesday, February 14, Navy Pier, Centennial Wheel

Not necessarily looking for love, no worries.  You can still go for a Valentine spin on the Centennial Wheel. The best part it’s free. In the spirit of National Ferris Wheel Day, Navy Pier is offering free rides on their Centennial Wheel until 2:14 pm. (get it–2/14–Valentine’s Day). Riders will be able to ride and take photos on the Valentine’s Day-themed gondolas.

4. Polar Beer Festival

Saturday, February 11, noon-4 pm., Rock Bottom Brewery

Get a jump on the outdoor festival season with this rooftop party at Rock Bottom Brewery (1 W. Grand Ave.).  Taste 50 strong ales provided by more than 25 breweries, plus an appetizer buffet. $40, ticket required

5. Chicago Theater Week

Looking for a place to take your Valentine or just trying to catch some shows at a bargain price, Chicago Theatre Week may be just your ticket. Today through February 9 – 19, more than 100 plays will be offering discount tickets.

6. Photo opp with stars from NBC TV’s hit shows

February 12, ATT Flagshipfilmchicagofire

Meet and greet cast members, LaRoyce Hawkins, Kara Killmer and YaYa DaCosta of the hit NBC TV shows, ‘Chicago PD’, ‘Chicago Fire’, ‘Chicago Med’ and the new Original Series, ‘Chicago Justice’ in person at #ATTFlagship (600 N Michigan Ave.) on Sunday, February 12th from 11 am.- 5 pm. for an opportunity to get your photo taken or just say hello. Free event, just show up.

7. SausageFest

February 11, noon-4 pm., Haymarket Pub & BreweryPoloniatastesausage
The West Town brewpub will be serving up 15 of its housemade sausages and five guest meats from Kimski, Links Taproom and other spots. The sausage will be paired with artisanal cheeses and more than 20 beers and ciders. 737 W. Randolph St. $55 ticket required.

8. French Posters at the Driehaus Museum

February 11-January 7, 2018, Driehaus Museum

Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

Photo: Carole Kuhrt-Brewer

Ooh la la, an exciting new exhibition, L’Affichomania: The Passion for French Posters, opens just in time for Valentine’s Day at the Driehaus Museum (40 E. Erie St.). Check out the amazing posters including Toulouse-Lautrec and you find yourself inspired to follow up with dinner at a French Bistro. February 11-January 7, 2018. Free-$20.

9. Chicago Pizza Party

Saturday, February 11,  2-9 pm., Ravenswood Event Center

Pizza and beer, the perfect combo serves as the centerpiece for this party at the Ravenswood Event Center (4011 N. Ravenswood Ave.). The fest features pizza from 19 different restaurants, beers, games, a photo booth and DJs plus dessert from BomboBar. $20 ticket required.

10. Orchids to You

February 11-March 26, Chicago Botanic Garden

Orchids in Vogue: The CBG Orchid Show 2017

Orchids in Vogue: The CBG Orchid Show 2017

Escape to the Chicago Botanic Garden (1000 Lake Cook Rd., Glencoe) for their annual Orchid Show. Bask in a tropical world of warmth and color with more than 10,000 varies of orchids. The show also feature events, activities and orchids for sale on various days. February 11-March 26. $8-$12, plus parking fee for non-members.

11. Merce Cunningham: Common Time

February 11-April 30, MCAmercemca

The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (220 E. Chicago Ave.) and the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis together present the largest survey ever of Merce Cunningham and his dynamic artistic collaborations in the immersive exhibition Merce Cunningham: Common Time. The survey, that Show Me Chicago will preview Friday, features performances by international touring companies and former Merce Cunningham Dance Company dancers. February 11-April 30, 2017.

12. Culture of China

February 12, noon to 4 pm., Navy Pier

Neighborhoods of the World, a free event in the Crystal Gardens at Navy Pier, offers visitors the opportunity to immerse themselves in the traditions of China with folk music, dance, food, and crafts.

Subscribe to Show Me Chicago by email

If you would like to keep in touch with what’s happening in Chicago, like us on Facebook or subscribe to Show Me Chicago by email. To subscribe, type your email address in the box below and click the “create subscription” button. Our list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.

Filed under: Things to do

Leave a comment

  • Advertisement:
  • Advertisement:
  • ChicagoNow is full of win

    Welcome to ChicagoNow.

    Meet our bloggers,
    post comments, or
    pitch your blog idea.

  • Meet The Blogger

    Carole Kuhrt Brewer

    Arts, entertainment and dining journalist..

  • Follow me on Twitter.

  • Recent posts

  • Categories

  • Latest on ChicagoNow

  • Advertisement: