Bid a sweet farewell to July and show August how we do fun in Chicago. Hit up Kidzapalooza at Lollapalooza, dance with the faeries in Elgin or whisk the kids away to Asia — but be back by bedtime. Read on for your guide to our favorite activities to explore with the fam.

photo: Morton Arboretum’s Destination Asia Festival  


Jefferson Park

Visit the Kid Zone at Jeff Fest Arts & Music Festival
Jefferson Memorial Park plays host to a three-day art and music fest known for cutting edge local and national acts across all genres. The festival takes place on the grounds of Jefferson Memorial Park with two stages and a designated Kid’s Zone with family-friendly performances, face painting, bounce houses, pony rides and more! Sat. & Sun. Event details.

The Loop

Rock Out at Kidzapalooza
Create a new family tradition of rocking out at Kidzapalooza, the music festival for kids within Lollapalooza. Get inspiration for your own songs as you dance and sing to your favorite kindie musicians and craft your own masterpieces at the arts and crafts tables. Fri.-Sun. Event details.

Millennium Park

The Best Fest is a Family Fun Fest
Millennium Park’s Family Fun Festival is back with a full lineup of interactive activities, sing-a-longs, delightful story times and arts and crafts for kids of all ages. Fri.-Sun. Event details.

Museum Campus

2017 Meijer Chicago Bears Family Fest
The Bears are opening their house to everyone in Chicago for a team scrimmage, tons of fun activities for the whole family and more. Plus, this year, kids get to run on the field. Sat. Event details.



Spend Your Day and Summer Nights at the Zoo
See Brookfield Zoo in a new light with cooler evening weather at Summer Nights.  Families are treated to roaming entertainers, live music on the kid’s stage, close-up animal encounters and a laser light show, all surrounded by the intrigues of the zoo. Fri. & Sat. Event details.


Daydream Your Way Through The World of Faeries Festival
Slip into your favorite fairy or fantasy outfit for Vasa Park’s 13th annual fairy festival. The weekend will include music, family activities and entertainment. Sat. & Sun. Event details.


Keep Your Eyes to the Skies for a Kite Fest
The skies will be alive with kite stunts and tricks as Elmhurst welcomes some of the Midwest’s best professional kite flyers. Kids can look forward to free kite building, a candy drop and kite lessons. Bring your own kites to fly during open fly times. Sat. Event details.


Model Railroad Garden: Landmarks of America
Experience the delightful sights and sounds of miniature trains traversing high and low tunnels, across bridges and around buildings at the Chicago Botanic Garden’s Model Railroad Garden. The exhibit features 18 garden-scale trains on 1,600 feet of track with vignettes of tiny people and animals that give it a storybook feel. Fri.-Sun. Event details.


Destination Asia Festival
Spend a beautiful Chicago summer day exploring the diverse cultures of Asia through music, dance, food and more! Be sure to check out the tree collections from China, Japan and Korea — it’s an Arboretum, after all! Fri.-Sun. Event details.


Naperville Plays! and Sheep Sunday
Naperville Plays presents Sheep Sundays. As weather heats up and summer winds down, triple your fun with Naper Settlement, DuPage Children’s Museum and the Naperville Public Library. Families will enjoy a fun afternoon of sheepherding demonstrations, animal tales and hands-on activities with animals in mind. Sun. Event details.


For more ideas on how to spend your weekend, check out our Family Events Calendar.

Chat with us about how you’re going to spend your weekend in the Comments below!

— Maria Chambers