Chicago Like a Local Blog

Unique perspectives on the city from the people who live here.

4 Chicago Music Festivals to Attend in May

Gospel Fest

By Madeline Higgins/



Chicago dives into festival season head-on this month, as venues, promoters and artists being preparing for the slew of festivities that populate Chicagoans' streets and calendars during the spring.

From a street party sidewalk sale to the famed Gospel Music Festival, May boasts an array of music events and block parties as diverse as the city itself. We've compiled a list of four notable (and affordable) festivals

In Town for the National Restaurant Show 2015? Check Out These Chicago Faves

McCormick Place

From May 16-19, Chicago will welcome friends new and old visiting for the National Restaurant Association Show at McCormick Place. With hundreds of events, exhibits, celebrity chef appearances and more, it'll be hard to get away for even a quick jaunt. With that in mind, I've come up with a few close to McCormick Place during the show. 

Enjoy your visit and welcome to Chicago!

Kid-Friendly Picks for Mother's Day

Mother's Day

She's the lucky lady who sat through all of your band concerts and swim meets, who waited up late for you with a half smile on her face and got you to where you are today. What would you do without Mom? Luckily, there's a Mother's Day brunch to match your mom: dress up in your Sunday best, order her a mimosa, and thank Mom for being there when you needed her most! Here are six kid-friendly ways to treat your mom for Mother's Day on Sunday, May 10.

Cupcake Decorating Classes at Chicago's Magnolia Bakery

Matt Kirouac

Tucked into Chicago's Block Thirty Seven shopping mall at 108 N. State St., Chicago's Magnolia Bakery is a mecca of all the classic American baked goods that everyone loves. Delectable muffins, pies, cakes and brownies line the shelves in this cherished bakery. But the true stars here are the cupcakes: baked fresh and frosted daily, you'll find all your traditional favorites as well as seasonal and daily specials. The cakes and cupcakes here are known for their colorful and

Choose Chicago Weekly Instagram Series: April 26-May 1

Carlos Barillas

Each week, we feature one Instagram photographer who will get to feature their photos and videos on Choose Chicago's Instagram account all week long, part of our new #TakingOverChooseChicago series. This week, we chose Carlos Barillas. Enjoy!

Friday Faves: What Do You Look Forward to Most About Summer in Chicago?

Chicago Bean

Here at Choose Chicago, we believe one of the best ways to jumpstart a truly epic experience in Chicago is to get ideas from the people who know the city best. Our locals, some of the greatest ambassadors of Chicago you can find, are invaluable resources for discovering the greatest things to see and do in the city.  

"Superstars" Exhibit Highlights Chicago Rock Photographer Paul Natkin's Greatest Works

Judas Priest

In the wide spectrum of Chicago's music scene, we've produced far more than just a multitude of talented song makers and stage takers. Paul Natkin has cemented himself as a legendary name in the industry but in a much different context. If not for the Chicago native, some of music's most legendary images wouldn't exist. The son of noted photojournalist Robert Natkin, Paul has been shooting famous performers for more than four decades. 

NFL Draft Set to Rock Chicago

2015 NFL Draft

Today, the 2015 NFL Draft kicks off a weekend of incredible football fantasy all over Chicago.

The celebrated annual selection of the best and brightest college stars will begin with the first round at 7 p.m. CT tonight. The second and third rounds will begin at 6 p.m. CT tomorrow, May 1, and the final four rounds will commence at 11 a.m. CT on Saturday, May 2. 

Empowering Theater for Kids: WONDERLAND, Alice's Rock & Roll Adventure

Alice in Wonderland

Sadly, not all children's theater productions speak to girls, and as the mom of a theater-obsessed little girl, I can only take so many princess-based plays. Thankfully, the Chicago Children's Theatre has flipped that script: Wonderland, Alice's Rock & Roll Adventure, a new family musical created by top Chicago director Rachel Rockwell and music director Michael Mahler, managed to spark the imaginations of my daughter, age 5, and her two friends, ages 6 and 7.

The Best Upcoming Jazz Shows in Chicago

Esperanza Spalding

Chicago has made a name for itself as the forefront of jazz since the 1920s, and with world-class musicians filling seats in clubs and theaters every night, things aren't much different today. Get a taste of the action at one of these upcoming shows.

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