Hope you packed your swimsuit and snorkel. Nope, you’re not going for a dip in Lake Michigan (although you can certainly do that, too!) — you’re going under the sea with Ariel and friends at The Little Mermaid musical at Chicago Shakespeare Theater. This show will wow you, and so will the weekend’s other events. Hit Taste of Lincoln Avenue, Jeff Fest, Wicker Park Fest and lots more.


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.

Wicker Park

Wicker Park Fest
Sing and dance to the likes of Mr. Pickle, Mary Macaroni, and Taiko drumming. Let your Mini-Me’s personality shine with hair streaking and Henna tattoos. Hungry? Check out the Kids table to whip something up and decorate a cookie. Then burn off some energy in the bungie run or bounce house or try a quieter activity at the arts and crafts area. Kids’ Area open Sat. & Sun., noon-6 p.m. Suggested donation of $5/person. All ages. Event details.

Lincoln Park

Taste of Lincoln Avenue
With 250-plus vendors, food and nearly 35 music acts on three stages, there’s sure to be something for everyone. Check out the giant slides, pony rides, arts and crafts, kindie musicians, magicians and puppeteers, art activities galore and more at Kids’ Carnival. Kids’ Carnival hours Sat. & Sun., noon-6 p.m. Suggested donation of $7/person, but Kids’ Carnival admission is free. All ages. Event details.

Jefferson Park

Jeff Fest
Jam out at this three-day art and music fest known for cutting-edge local and national acts across all genres. The festival takes place at Jefferson Memorial Park with two stages and a designated Kids Zone where they can listen to family-friendly performances and get their faces painted. Kids Area open Sat. & Sun., noon-5 p.m. Suggested donation of $5/person; kids 12 & under free, and free for anybody named Jeff! All ages. Event details.

Museum Campus

Summer of Science at Adler Planetarium
Join Adler Planetarium in celebrating its 85th year anniversary with six special days of hands-on, minds-on activities that will get the whole family excited about science. Learn about black holes, explore a virtual model of the Universe, cook up a comet and so much more. Held Sat., 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m. $24.95/adult; $19.95/child. All ages. 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.


“Pinocchio” on Stage
Join Pinocchio on his quest to become a real boy and treat your kids to the classic tale of the fatherly wood carver, Geppetto, who brings life to a wooden puppet with the help of the loving Blue Fairy and her wand. From a candy island to the belly of a whale, this one-hour presentation will dazzle and delight audiences of all ages. Opens Fri. thru Nov. 1. $14/adults (18–64); $12/seniors; $9/child (2–17); children 1 & under free. 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 Sundays at Chicago Botanic Garden
Take part in engaging, educational and fun activities related to Japanese gardens. Each Sunday during the series, a different take-home project will be featured near the Malott Japanese Garden, including: raking miniature dry gardens, trying chopsticks and practicing calligraphy. Held Sun., 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Free with general admission. All ages. Event details.

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

— Kelly Aiglon & Maria Chambers

photo: “The Little Mermaid” at Chicago Shakespeare Theater / Liz Lauren