Chicago's spring and summer event schedule is already heating up. Browse our highlights below to see what festivals, holidays and special events are in Chicago in 2017 and plan your group itinerary around these marquee dates.



St. Patrick's Day River Dyeing

St. Patrick's Day Parade/Dyeing of the Chicago River

March 11
You don't have to be Irish to enjoy St. Patrick's Day in Chicago, but it helps to be Irish at heart - just like the more than 400,000 green-garbed spectators who flock here every year. The river goes green on the morning of Saturday, March 11 (thanks to 45 pounds of vegetable dye), followed by a festive parade with bagpipers, Irish food and, of course, green beer.  


Linda Vista

March 30-May 21
Serious theater fans won't want to miss this Steppenwolf Theatre Company world premiere by ensemble member and Tony Award winner Tracy Letts. Linda Vista centers on a middle-aged misanthrope named Wheeler, with Letts' signature black comedy that made works like his Pulitzer Prize-winning 2007 play August: Osage County a massive hit.  


MLB Opening Day

April 3 & April 10
Hot off the Chicago Cubs' 2016 World Series victory, Major League Baseball Opening Day is sure to be a more raucous party than ever. The World Champions reopen Wrigley Field for their first home game of the season on April 10 against the Los Angeles Dodgers, while the Chicago White Sox step back up to the plate on April 3 against the Detroit Lions. See the Cubs' 2017 schedule here, and the White Sox schedule here.  


Disney's Aladdin

April 11-July 2
Broadway In Chicago's first production of the 2017 season, Disney's Aladdin is a perfect outing for the whole family. Join Jasmine, Genie, Jafar and Aladdin himself for the hit Broadway musical adaptation of the beloved Disney film, which comes to Chicago for a nearly three-month run at the Cadillac Palace Theatre.



Exhibitionism - The Rolling Stones at Navy Pier

April 15-July 30
This blockbuster exhibit is the largest touring exhibit of its kind at nearly 18,000 square feet. More than 500 original and rare items from The Rolling Stones archives are on display in this limited engagement, including the band's handwritten lyric books and personal diaries, costumes by revolutionary designers such as Alexander McQueen, recordings and previously unreleased behind-the-scenes footage. Highlights include a cinema showing a high-octane Rolling Stones film and a recording studio featuring the band's actual instruments.



 New Year's Eve Fireworks at Navy Pier

Navy Pier Summer Fireworks

Every Wed. and Sat., Memorial Day through Labor Day
There's always plenty of family fun to be found at Navy Pier, but this annual event is an explosive way to kick off the summer. Each Wednesday and Saturday throughout the season, the sky above Lake Michigan explodes with color, light and sound, with the city skyline as the backdrop.  


Millennium Park Music & Film Series

Grab a seat at Jay Pritzker Pavilion or picnic on the Great Lawn with free concerts (Mondays/Thursdays) and movies (Tuesdays). Last year's music lineup saw acts as diverse as Blonde Redhead, Maceo Parker and DJ Spooky, while movie screenings included crowd-pleasers like Finding Nemo, The Dark Knight and Chicago classic Ferris Bueller's Day Off.  


Chicago Blues Festival

June 9-11
Chicago's reputation as the "Blues Capital of the World" is never stronger than during this largest free blues festival in the world. Held in Grant Park, the festival attracts approximately 500,000 fans each year with dozens of world-class performers on five stages. Past acts include Bonnie Raitt, B.B. King and Ray Charles, so you know you'll be in good company.


The King & I

June 14-July 9
Rodgers & Hammerstein's classic musical set in 19th-century Bangkok waltzes through Chicago for a three-week engagement at the James M. Nederlander Theatre (formerly the Oriental Theatre). "Shall We Dance," "Getting To Know You" and "Something Wonderful" are just a few of the timeless songs that'll have the whole family humming along.  


Taste of Chicago

July 5-9
Foodies will want to be the first in line at this annual festival, now in its 37th year. The five-day food fair features the best of Chicago's booming restaurant scene, plus cooking demos, free concerts and more, all taking place in Grant Park.  


Chicago Air & Water Show

August 19-20
Dozens of civil and military planes will take to the skies above North Ave. Beach for this annual display of aerial daring. Along with the thrilling free falls, fly-bys and barrel turns, other attractions include boat jumping and parachuting displays.  


Chicago Jazz Festival

August 31-September 3
This Labor Day weekend festival has been a Chicago tradition since 1979. Showcasing local, national and international talent, the free, all-ages festival takes place in Millennium Park and makes the perfect setting for a picnic to close out the summer.


Related Listings

Navy Pier
600 E. Grand Ave.
Chicago, IL 60611
(312) 595-5300

Chicago Cubs
1060 W. Addison St.
Chicago, IL 60613
(773) 404-4200

Steppenwolf Theatre Company
1650 N. Halsted St.
Chicago, IL 60614
(312) 335-1650

Millennium Park
201 E. Randolph St.
Chicago, IL 60601
(312) 744-6050

Broadway In Chicago
17 N. State St.
Chicago, IL 60602
(312) 977-1701

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