Summer festivals. Revolutionary robots. LEGO universes. It doesn’t get much better than this. Get in on the fun this weekend at family events around town. Your first stop: Lincoln Square’s Square Roots Festival, where you can dance the day away. There’s also the kickoff of Disney’s The Little Mermaid on stage and lots more. Have a blast!

Square Roots Festival Chicago

Lincoln Square

Square Roots Festival
The Old Town School of Folk Music and the Lincoln Square Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce’s craft beer and music experience made sure to include plenty of family fun with an instrument petting zoo, art tent, face painting, swing set drum kit, inflatable fun, games and more! Kid-friendly performances by Laura Doherty and the Heartbeats, Mocolocco the Clown, Joel Frankel & the Groanups, and a family barn dance (to name just a few) will keep the kids grooving all weekend. Held Sat., noon-11 p.m.; Sun., noon-9 p.m. at Welles Park. Suggested donation of $10/adults; $5/kids; $20/families. All ages. Event details.

Navy Pier

Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” Musical
Venture under the sea with spunky Ariel and her saltwater-loving friends on an adventure to find true love with the handsome Prince Eric. Based on the full-length Broadway musical, this 75-minute production features special opportunities for audiences to interact with the actors for photos and chit-chat. Held thru Aug. 16 at Chicago Shakespeare Theater. $34/adult; $22/ages 12 & under. Ages 5 & up. Event details.


Millennium Park Family Fun Fest
Yay! It’s back for a summer of interactive activities, sing-a-longs and circle dances from Old Town School of Folk, delightful story times, and arts and crafts for kids of all ages. There is new entertainment daily — so return often. Held thru Aug. 23 (10 a.m.-2 p.m. daily) at Chase Promenade North. Free. All ages. Event details.

Lincoln Park

It’s a Bugs (& Bees!) Life at Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum
Secrets of Bees is a highly interactive exhibit using live bees, costumes and props to allow families to role-play and peel back the mystery of bees. Once your pollen sacks are filled, buzz on over to Bugs: Outside the Box and be amazed by a butterfly with a 5-foot wingspan, a longhorn beetle with an antennae more than 12 feet across, and a virtual army of giant bugs to study. Held thru Oct. 1. $9/adults; $6/ages 3-12; free for 2 & under. All ages. Event details.

Hyde Park

“Robot Revolution” Exhibit at Museum of Science and Industry
Robots that have rarely been shown to the public — from soccer-playing ‘bots to impressive humanoids to all-terrain crawlers — will demonstrate how amazing machines can change how we live, work and play for the better. Held thru Jan. 3. Requires an additional ticket of $11/adults; $9/ages 3-11. All ages. Event details.


Pirate Adventure Island at LEGOLAND Discovery Center
All hands on deck! Be among the first lads and lassies to experience this new attraction. Dress in your best pirate attire and set sail on an seafaring adventure for hidden treasure. Discover hidden sea creatures, spar in a pirate battle or walk the plank. Held all summer long. $18/person. All ages. Event details.


Family Fun Night at Blackberry Farm
Enjoy a fun-filled family evening of rides, games and more at the living-history museum where pioneer life is re-created through educational demonstrations. Pack the blankets, picnic basket and lawn chairs to enjoy a special showing of Back to the Future II on an outdoor movie screen at dusk. Held Fri., 7-9 p.m. $5/person. All ages. Event details.

What are you up to this weekend? Let us know in the Comments!

— Kelly Aiglon & Maria Chambers

photo: Square Roots Festival