Women have long played a major role in impacting and shaping the city of Chicago. As Women’s History Month kicks off in March, it’s a great time to recognize the important achievements and contributions made by these trailblazers. All month long, you can find events — ranging from theatre to music to the arts and beyond — honoring women across fields.

Here’s a roundup of ways to celebrate Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day in Chicago this year.

Women’s History Month culinary events

Photo by Matthieu Joannon

Let’s Talk Womxn “More Than March” Black & Bling Bash: Start Women’s History Month with a woman-powered celebration from Let’s Talk Womxn Chicago at Moe’s Cantina on Friday, March 1. Enjoy tasting stations and cocktails by 30+ leading Let’s Talk Womxn Chicago restaurants, plus a DJ, black and bling drag show, dancing, women soapboxes, and more.

Women Winemakers Tasting Event at Le Sud: Deep dive into the world of wines with Le Sud, a woman-owned restaurant in Roscoe Village. Attend a special Women Winemakers tasting event on Thursday, March 7, where you can explore selections from women vintners accompanied by hors d’oeuvres, and even bring a bottle home.

International Women’s Night Out at Volo: Get empowered at the fourth annual Women’s History Month celebration at Volo restaurant in Roscoe Village on Wednesday, March 6. Guests will work on gratitude journal prompts while enjoying an appetizer and drink with journaling materials to use during the event and to take home.

Charcuterie Workshop and Non-Alcoholic Open Wine Bar: In West Town, 2048 Non-Alcoholic Wine Shop will be hosting a class on Saturday, March 16 on the art of crafting a top-tier charcuterie board. Headed by All A’Board owner, Alicia Starks, you’ll be provided with premium ingredients for your masterpiece along with a complimentary open bar featuring a selection of the shop’s finest non-alcoholic wines.

Women’s History Month exhibits, shows, and more

Red Clay Dance Company, photo credit MReid Photography

Music, dance, comedy, and more
La Femme Dance Festival: This three-day dance festival honors women in dance and brings award-winning choreographers and breathtaking performances to the Harris Theater for Music and Dance, including two world premieres.

ECHO Women’s History Month Concert: The Chicago Sinfonietta will be celebrating Women’s History Month with ECHO, an inspiring program featuring a lineup of works from women in music like Florence Price and Clarice Assad. This stunning performance will be held at Auditorium Theatre on Saturday, March 16.

Girl Heaven at The Second City: This all-women sketch revue is back in The Second City’s Blackout Cabaret. Girl Heaven is the greatest place on Earth that you’ll never want to leave. With completely new sketches and jokes, the show will run from Saturday, Feb. 17 through Saturday, March 30.

International Women’s Day Film Festival: The Kehrein Center for the Arts in Austin will host this event in partnership with One Earth Film Festival on Friday, March 8.

International Women’s Day Dance: The Chicago Foundation for Women will be hosting an International Women’s Day dance with appetizers and an open bar on Saturday, March 9. All funds from the event will go toward organizations and programs benefiting lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning women and girls in the Chicago region.

Chicago History Museum
Chicago History Museum; Clayton Hauck for Choose Chicago

Museum exhibits and events
Radical Clay: Contemporary Women Artists from Japan at the Art Institute of Chicago: Explore the influential and ambitious compositions by 36 women contemporary ceramic artists from Japan from 1970 to the present day. This innovative exhibit is featured at the Art Institute of Chicago and currently running through Monday, June 3.

Women’s History Month Commemorative Day at Chicago History Museum: To honor this year’s theme of “Women Who Advocate for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion,” the Chicago History Museum will offer a schedule of interactive activities that highlight women of all backgrounds on Saturday, March 30. Access is included with general admission.

Freedom Square: The Black Girlhood Altar: The Chicago Cultural Center hosts this powerful exhibition intended as a sacred site for missing and murdered Black girls and women. The display, which runs through March 10, is curated by A Long Walk Home, a national art organization that empowers young people to end violence against girls and women.

Alice Shaddle: Fuller Circles: The Hyde Park Art Center will open this new retrospective on Alice Shaddle, a Chicago artist who co-founded the women’s artist collective Artemisia Gallery. This exhibition will feature new research and never-before-exhibited works by the artist to introduce her to the next generation of Chicagoans. 

Women-centric markets
International Women’s Day Market: In Lincoln Square/Ravenswood, this third annual pop-up market will include a curated selection of 50+ local, women-owned vendors selling unique jewelry, beauty products, home goods, and more. The free event is from Saturday, March 9 through Sunday, March 10 at Artifact Events.

Chicago Collective Women’s Edition Show: This biannual show features an open-booth format spotlighting exhibitors who represent hundreds of the finest brands in women’s classic and contemporary apparel, lifestyle, accessories, and footwear. The event is located at THE MART in River North from Sunday, March 3 through Tuesday, March 5. 

Women’s Makers Market & Artist Workshops: Navy Pier will be hosting this market series that showcases the work of talented women artists and makers from across Chicago’s neighborhoods. Shop an assortment of hand-crafted creations, one-of-a-kind jewelry, apparel, spices, artwork, literature, and accessories every Saturday in March.

Chicago landmarks honoring women

Jane Addams Hull-House Museum: Jane Addams was America’s first woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize. The social reformer and feminist ran Hull House on the west side of Chicago, which provided housing, childcare, education, and more for the neighborhood’s many immigrant families. Today, the former Hull House complex is a dynamic museum dedicated to social justice issues of past and present.

The Light of Truth Ida B. Wells National Monument: This Chicago landmark honors the legacy of Ida B. Wells, the journalist and social reformer who advocated for civil rights, women’s suffrage, and economic justice. She’s remembered for her anti-lynching campaign and as a founding member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). Her former residence is also commemorated nearby.

Gwendolyn Brooks Park and former residence: Gwendolyn Brooks was one of Chicago’s most acclaimed and beloved poets, whose many accolades include a Pulitzer Prize. Her childhood home still stands on the south side of the city, and nearby Brooks Park honors the writer with a bronze statue.

Chicago Women’s Park and Garden: This small, charming green space honors the historical contributions women have made to the city of Chicago. One defining feature of the park is a symbolically powerful statue dedicated to Jane Addams and designed by Louise Bourgeois, known as “one of the most important and influential artists of the 20th and 21st centuries.”

LGBTQ+ landmarks: Chicago has been shaped by a long line of LGBTQ+ leaders, including many influential women. Explore their rich legacy through the city’s array of landmarks, which honor icons like Lorraine Hansberry, Pearl Hart, and Valerie Taylor. Plus, the Chicago Legacy Walk includes many pioneering women in LGBTQ+ history.

Women-owned businesses in Chicago

The owners sit on the patio outside Nobody's Darling with cocktails
Photo by Susanne Fairfax

One of the best ways to celebrate Women’s History Month is by supporting local women-owned businesses. Chicago is home to a diverse community of women-owned restaurants, boutiques, bookstores, and beyond. And hear more about their stories in our small business spotlights.

Restaurants and bars


Attractions and more