Hot DogThe Chicago-style hot dog with its toppings (no ketchup!) is one of our city's best inventions. Best enjoyed at a baseball game, at a lake front picnic, or as a late-night post-partying snack, it's a gourmet meal in a poppyseed bun. At the Chicago History Museum's 3rd annual Chicago Hot Dog Fest August 5-7, Chicago's most famous encased meat will be celebrated with a free (!!!) 3-day event featuring full lineup of bands, hot dog history speakers, and hot dog vendors serving up their spin on the Chicago-style hot dog.

Chicago Hot Dog Festival

The classic Chicago-style hot dog, made exclusively with Vienna® Beef, will be the star of the festival, and you'll be able to try some of the best dogs in the city served up by on-site vendors like Fatso's Last Stand, Byron's Hotdogs, Flashy Hotdogs and more.

Eat as many hot dogs as you can while enjoying the musical lineup: Friday brings Foolhouse (11 a.m. - 1 p.m.), The Polkaholics (1 - 2:15 p.m.), R Gang (2:45 - 4 p.m). Run Forrest Run (4:30 - 6 p.m.) and American English (6:30 - 8:30 p.m.). Saturday's highlight is the 7 p.m. performance by JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound while Catfight headlines on Sunday at 6 p.m.

Chicago Hot Dog Festival

Since the event is hosted by the Chicago History Museum, you're bound to learn the history behind the (red) hots. On Friday at 1 p.m. historian Peter Alter will present Dogs, Diamonds, Wieners and Losers: Baseball in Chicago. Expect a roaring debate between Alter and Janet ‘Queen of Wien' Riley at 4 p.m.'s The Great Meat Debate: Is a Hot Dog a Sandwich?

At 1 p.m. Joy Bivens will delve into The Best Fest: Chicago World's Fair at 1 p.m. on Saturday while Janet ‘Queen of Wien' Riley and Dr. Jeff Sindelar will examine hot dog myths at 3 p.m. Learn how to style yourself for your next BBQ at Petra Slinkard's 1 p.m. Sunday presentation BBQ Dressing: Fashion's Move to the Backyard.

Chicago History Museum Hot Dog

For the little ones, head to the family fun tent where face painting, games, inflatables, crafts, rides and more await. Don't forget to transform your family members into Chicago-style hot dogs then add your condiments: Smile for a picture and share on social media with the hashtag #HotDogFest.

Though admission is free, you'll want to purchase Hot Dog Dollars in advance so you can save up to 20% on hot dogs. What is a dog dollar? Treat Dog Dollars as you would normal currency, $20USD = $20 Dog Dollars. Hot dogs range in price from $4 - 8 dog dollars.You can also purchase Hot Dog Dollars on-site, but if you want to save, purchase discounted dog dollars before you go.


The Essentials

Chicago Hot Dog Fest
Chicago History Museum
1601 N Clark St

  • Friday & Saturday: 11 a.m. - 9 p.m.
  • Sunday: 11 a.m. - 8 p.m.

Can't make the Hot Dog festival? Check out our guide to Chicago's Best Hot Dogs and share your favorite Chicago hot dog spots in the comments below!