The Chicagoist will be launching later but in the meantime please enjoy our archives.

26 Of Our Favorite Events In Chicago This Weekend

By Michelle Meywes Kopeny in Arts & Entertainment on Sep 30, 2016 3:31PM

Image via Shaw's Oyster Fest's website.

A concrete car, a corn maze and a cat video festival make up just a few of our favorite things to see and do this weekend.


SHAW’S OYSTER FEST: Shaw's presents their 28th Annual Oyster Fest downtown from 3 to 10 p.m. In addition to the delicious sea treats and “Oyster Slurp-Off Grand Finale,” there will be live music from local blues bands, including Bumpus and The Friends Band. There’s also an after-party inside the restaurant with live music til 1 a.m. Tickets are $20.

LAVISH LOCKPICKING AFFAIR: What better than a “glamorous affair” to learn lockpicking? Atlas Obscura hosts The Art of Lockpicking at Stan Mansion at 9 p.m. with an evening of cocktails, live music and vintage attire. Internationally renowned lockpicker Schuyler Towne will show off his skills and share some tips and tricks. Tickets are $100.

Image via West Town Art Walk's Facebook page.

WEST TOWN ART WALK + FOOD TRUCK SOCIAL: The West Town Art Walk and West Town Food Truck Social have banded together for one beautiful and delicious two-day festival. With West Town shops, businesses, restaurants and galleries all participating, the Art Walk portion will feature Art in the Park in Eckhart Park and a new Art Car Show. “Snack-n-stroll” through neighborhood while you enjoy bites from about 19 food trucks and libations from local businesses. Free.

TASTE TALKS: Cooking demonstrations, tastings, enlightening panel discussions and more make up Taste Talks Chicago this weekend. The festival opens Friday with a party at Virgin Hotel featuring Wilco drummer Glenn Kotche. Single event tickets and “Kitchen Sink” passes are available on the Taste Talks website.

Image courtesy of University of Chicago Arts.

CONCRETE CADILLAC: There’s going to be a 16-ton concrete Cadillac De Ville cruising down the street on Friday as it makes the move from the Museum of Contemporary Art to the University of Chicago Campus. It’s the beginning of Concrete Happenings, a series of exhibitions and programming at U of C. Check it out in front of the MCA from noon to 1 p.m. before it heads out on procession with other classic Caddys and a cement mixer.

DINNER FROM GOOD STOCK: Land & Sea Dept.’s latest From Good Stock collaboration is with Chef Andy Ricker of the Pok Pok empire. The supper club series is split into two dinners on Friday, with the first one at 6 p.m. and another at 9:30 p.m. Get your tummy ready for three courses the North of Thailand, beverages from Leatherbee Gin and Marz Community Brewing and Thai jams for the ears. Tickets are $100.

Image via Lincoln Park Zoo's website.

ZOO FALL FEST: Fall Fest returns to Lincoln Park Zoo for the second year in a row. A corn maze, a burlap sack slide, an inflatable obstacle course, rides and more await. Entry is free, but tickets are required for some attractions. For more information, visit the zoo’s website.

HUNGER BENEFIT: Attend a party in honor of fighting hunger at Architectural Artifacts from 7 to 11 p.m. “I Am Your Neighbor” benefits Chicago’s oldest emergency food pantry, Common Pantry, and will feature Ravenswood chefs, wine and beers plus live entertainment from singer/songwriter Karen Salmon. Tickets are $100.

CELESTIAL SOUNDS: Sigur Rós is bringing their otherworldly compositions, buoyed by the from-another-dimension language and vocals of singer/guitarist Jón Þór "Jónsi" Birgisso. If you think you're unfamiliar with the band, you're probably mistaken, since the use of their song "Starálfur" at the climax of The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou firmly ensconced the band in the pop-culture stratosphere. They also had a Game of Thrones cameo. Seeing Sigur Rós in the ornate setting and pristine sound that The Chicago Theatre offers could result in a truly transcendent experience on Friday night. Tickets range from $69.50 - $79.50.

EP RELEASE SHOW: Textbook's latest EP, Only When I'm Breathing, delivers another brisk, four-song barrage of their slamming Midwestern mix of punk and bar-stool power-pop. The band members have served in what seems like a jillion local bands, including Not Rebecca, Woolworthy, Loud Lucy and Dan Vapid and the Cheats, just to name a very few. The band plays Friday at Livewire Lounge, so belly up to the bar and hoist a cold one to their songs about heartache and (begrudgingly) growing up.

ART + CRAFT MARKET: Local makers and businesses come together for Bangs Art & Craft Market Fest at Lincoln, Wellington and Southport. Yes, there will be vendors with vintage jewelry, candles and ceramics, but what you might not expect is a Doritos bar, live art and live music. Open at 5 p.m. on Friday and 11 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday.

REINVENTED BUSKERS: Look around when you’re near one of Wicker Park and Bucktown’s Blue Line stops. Reinvented Buskers provides out of the ordinary performances to spice up your commute from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. A beatbox harmonica, a magic show and a musical clown are just some of the one-of-a-kind acts that you’ll spot thanks to Collaboraction Theatre every Friday and Saturday through Oct. 15. Free.

DARKWAVE DANCE: The Faint has been mixing darkness into their dance rock since the late '90s, and though they don't strike us as a band to rest on their laurels, their label just released a career retrospective, CAPSULE:1999-2016, that covers the high points of the band's more influential material, including a few new tunes. So put on your sharpest threads, a healthy dose of eyeliner, and get ready to dance at The Metro with the band on Friday night. Tickets are $29.50.


Image via Bacon & Beer Classic's Facebook page.

BACON + BEER CLASSIC: Few things go together like bacon and, well anything, but especially beer. The pairing will be together this Saturday at the Chicago Bacon and Beer Classic at Soldier Field. There will be games, contests and more bacon-infused dishes than you could imagine. Tickets start at $69 for one of two 3-hour sessions: noon to 3 p.m. or 6 to 9 p.m.

WINE AND CHAMPAGNE FESTIVAL: Uncorked brings us the Chicago Wine and Champagne Festival at Revel this Saturday. Promising to be a full wine experience, the event features more than 200 varietals to try, plus a wine market, artisanal food vendors and a video DJ. Two tasting sessions to choose from: 2 to 5 p.m. or 6 to 9 p.m. Tickets are $65 ($75 for VIP and an extra hour).

AGITATED SYNTH-ROCK: Crystal Castles released their first album this year since original singer Alice Glass' departure, and Amnesty (I) finds the band is still unafraid to dress up their industrial beats in several layers of grime and aural detritus. That said, the album is definitely softer, relatively, than their previous work, and new vocalist Edith Frances applies a more tender approach to laying her vocals over Ethan Kath's fluctuating musical beds. The band plays Saturday night at Metro and tickets are $21.

THEATER OPEN HOUSE: Go behind the scenes of the Blue Man Group Experience during the Belmont Theater District Open House. Stops include the Laugh Factory, Annoyance Theatre and more with new show excerpts, backstage access and drinks and bites. Tickets are $25 for one-day, $40 for two-day passes. Check website for schedule.

Image via Logan Square Beer Festival's website.

LOGAN SQUARE BEER FESTIVAL: 20 breweries and more than 50 beers make up the Logan Square Beer Festival at Logan Square Auditorium. Everybody gets a commemorative glass mug and there will be brewery swag raffles. Tickets are $40 and sold in two sessions: 1 to 4 p.m. or 5 to 8 p.m.

SCI-FI THEATER FEST: Paragon hits the Public House Theater this weekend. The sci-fi and fantasy theatre festival presents 40 short plays over two days from up-and-coming writers like Emmy-award winning Chicago comedy writer Joe Janes and local actor/writer/director Spenser Davis. See the full schedule here. One-day passes are $15 and full weekend passes are $22.

VISCERAL DANCE: Visceral Dance Chicago enter their fourth season with their Fall Engagement at Harris Theater at 7:30 p.m. The contemporary dance company will present new works from LA’s Erica Sobol and Artistic Director Nick Pupillo. Tickets start at $20.

HIROSHIMA EXHIBIT: The Japanese Culture Center of Chicago is hosting a month-long Hiroshima-Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Exhibition with the opening ceremony from noon to 2 p.m on Saturday. The exhibit contains various objects that survived the atomic bombings plus information on the construction, history, and effects of nuclear weapons. For guaranteed entry to the opening ceremony, RSVP in advance at


Image courtesy of Friends of Chicago Animal Care & Control.

CAT VIDEO FEST: You could stay home and watch cat videos on your tiny computer screen, or you could go to The Music Box and see them on the big screen at CatVideoFest. Will Braden, creator of Henri le Chat Noir, will host the year round compilation of the best cat videos. Braden will be signing copies of his latest book in the lobby and a portion of ticket proceeds will benefit Friends of Chicago Animal Care & Control (FCACC) and Red Door Animal Shelter. Showings at 2 and 5 p.m. Tickets are $12.

FULTON MARKET HARVEST FEST: Fulton Market is known for it’s world class restaurants and cuisine, and this Sunday they’ll all be on display at the first ever Harvest Fest curated by Chefs Stephanie Izard and Paul Kahan. The all-day festival will have cooking demonstrations and tons of food and drink to consume from Girl & the Goat, Publican Quality Meats, Au Cheval, Goose Island, and the list goes on. The live music lineup has top notch local talent, too, with JC Brooks and the Uptown Sound headlining the evening. Tickets are $25.

Image via Bucktown Apple Pie Contest's Facebook page.

APPLE PIE CONTEST: Bucktown’s famed Apple Pie Contest is back for another year at the Holstein Park Fieldhouse. They invite you to “Occu-Pie Bucktown”—this year’s theme—from 2 to 5 p.m. While the bakers may compete for best pie, the real winners are the attendees who get to eat all that pie and ice cream. Free.

CRAFT BEER CRUISE: Hey, the northern suburbs have some pretty great breweries, too, okay? And on Sunday’s Craft Beer Cruise, you don’t even have to leave the city to try 12 of them. Set sail on the Mystic Blue at 12:30 p.m. with brews from Black Belt Brewing (Lake Zurich), Chain O'Lakes Brewing (McHenry), Tighthead Brewing Co. (Mundelein), Wild Onion Brewery (Lake Barrington) and more. Tickets are $49 ($30 for designated drivers).

WORKOUT + BRUNCH: After a good weekend workout, nothing sounds better than brunch. The Shred415 Rooftop Workout combines both into one event. The instructor-led 45-minute workout is followed by avocado toast with eggs, fruit & coffee, and what brunch is complete without a mimosa? 10:30 a.m. Tickets are $30.