When summer hits in Chicago any time spent indoors is wasted. With these concierge-recommended festivals, you’ll realize no city does summer better.
Forget About Your Diet
During any season Chicago is a food and drink mecca, so only imagine the deliciousness available to you at all the city’s festivals. For Douglas Pickett, concierge at the InterContinental Chicago, nothing more needs to be said after the words Ribfest Chicago. With over 30 Chicagoland eateries serving savory treats and 15 of them competing for the title of Best Ribs, you better bring those stretchy pants for a day of non-stop eating.
Dance off some of that food when the best musicians around the world perform at some of the most anticipated music festivals this summer. Of course, if you’re still hungry you can follow the advice of Jan Viscum, concierge at the Hyatt Chicago Magnificent Mile and have a picnic “before seeing the biggest performers in the country” at Ravinia. With it being the oldest outdoor music festival in the United States, Ravinia attracts a large variety of artists that this year includes Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons, Paul Simon, Patti LaBelle, Bob Dylan, Mavis Staples, Buddy Guy, and Jeff Beck. For a more contemporary sound don’t miss Lollapalooza with headliners Radiohead, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Future, Ellie Goulding, Major Lazer,and more. For the quintessential Chicago sound head to the Chicago Blues Festival. Over half a million people return every year for this free, three-day festival that this year features Shemekia Copeland, Lil’ Ed and The Blues Imperials, and Fred Wesley and The New JB’s.
Big music festivals are great to see artists from around the world, but don’t ignore Chicago’s great street festivals and cultural attractions. Richard Augusta, concierge at The Ritz-Carlton Hotel, finds Andersonville’s Midsommarfest to be a perfect combination of neighborhood flair, family, pets, and “crazy people.” With and expected 50,000 attendees over the two days and three nights and local restaurants, vendors, and music acts to experience, Midsommarfest is the best way to explore Andersonville. This summer will also be huge for Navy Pier as it celebrates its 100th birthday. Not only is there a new Ferris Wheel, new dining experiences, and tons of renovations, but it is also welcoming America’s Cup, the first time the legendary sailing race will be held on fresh water.