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12 Of Our Favorite Events In Chicago This Weekend

By Michelle Meywes Kopeny in Arts & Entertainment on Mar 3, 2017 5:09PM

Enroll in Cocktails 101 at The Violet Hour this Sunday. Image via The Violet Hour's Facebook page.

It's the freakin' weekend, and we're about to have some fun—with comedy shows, the History Museum, the Chiditarod and more.


LGBTQ HISTORY: The Chicago History Museum’s LGBTQ series, Out at CHM, steps into “Art, AIDS and Activism” at this week’s panel discussion. Hear how art has been used to speak out about the AIDS pandemic, advocate for its victims and critique public response from experts at SAIC, University of Illinois and Papi Project. Reception begins at 5:30 p.m. with panel discussion following at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $20.

FUNNY HA HA: Get “Warm and Fuzzy” at this episode of Funny Ha Ha hosted by Claire Zulkey at the Hideout. The live lit show features readings from Miss Spoken Co-Founder Carly Oishi, Second City's Pat Reidy, Huffington Post's Kim Bellware and many more. Entry is a $10 suggested donation at the door benefiting Sit Stay Read.

SPAMILTON: Every great production deserves a parody, and Spamilton is here to give Hamilton it’s due. The Off-Broadway hit “celebrates, roasts and eviscerates” the Tony Award winning blockbuster. The show, created by Gerard Alessandrini ("Forbidden Broadway") will run for 12 weeks only at Royal George Theatre. Tickets start at $59.

NOT SO SWEET 16 PARTY: Fireside Bowl will be the place to celebrate the end of the year that took Bowie, Prince, Leonard Cohen and others from us. FLOOD Magazine is throwing a party to kiss 2016 good bye with DJ sets from Greg Corner, Derek Berry and free bowling. RSVP for free entry and a free Deep Eddy cocktail. 8 p.m. to midnight.

PUNKTASTIC: The Menzingers grow up (a little) on this year’s After the Party. The tempos are a little slower, the lyric a little more introspective, but the band doesn’t skimp on the hooks which keeps the energy up. It’s not quite the blast furnace of punk-pop that was 2014’s Rented World, but it’s still one of the better albums we’ve heard so far this year. Jeff Rosenstock’s WORRY. Has proven to be a sleeper that has grown in our estimation since it’s release last year. It’s the aural equivalent of drunkenly staggering all over the stage with every amp cranked into the red, tempered by hooks that sound deceptively simple and ready-made for punk rock party. Catch both groups, with Rozwell Kid opening, Friday night at The Metro.

LILLSTREET LOFT PARTY: Check out Lillstreet's new digs at a free party with cocktails, tarot card readings and creative experiences from 7 to 9 p.m. The Ravenswood art and event space underwent a redesign and guests are invited to drop in and enjoy two gallery openings at Lillstreet Art Center at the same time. RSVP here.


Image via CHIditarod's Facebook page.

CHIDITAROD: The CHIditarod shopping cart race slash talent show slash food drive is back for another year. In the spirit of the Iditarod, teams of five take to carts instead of sleds and fill them with food to donate to the Greater Chicago Food Depository. It’s a chaotic scene as each team takes on a theme and puts on their costumes in the spirit of giving. Spectators will want to gather near the starting line at Wollcott and Hubbard. Race kicks off at 12:30 p.m.

MUSIC FROZEN DANCING: Who is crazy enough to throw an outdoor music festival in the middle of a Chicago winter? The Empty Bottle, that’s who. The winter block party Music Frozen Dancing is back outside the small venue with noise rockers Metz and indie trio Screaming Females co-headlining. Keep warm out there with beers from Goose Island, coffee from Dark Matter and chili from Bite Cafe. Gates open at 1 p.m. Free.

Image via Chicago Beer Festival's Facebook page.

CHICAGO BEER FESTIVAL: If you’ve ever thought about knocking back some cold ones with Sue, now is your chance. The Chicago Beer Festival takes over the great hall at the Field Museum from 8 to 11 p.m. with more than 70 breweries sampling seasonal brews. Some of the museum exhibits will be open to peruse plus there will be music and food available. Get your tickets in advance for this one though, because they won’t be sold at the door. Tickets are $45 ($55 for VIP which includes early entry at 7 p.m.).

HIDE N SEEK: The annual Chicago Children's Museum Hide N Seek fundraiser is back at the Navy Pier space. The event supports the museum's innovative exhibits, educational programs, and extensive community access initiatives while grown ups enjoy an evening of food, cocktails, music, raffles, and fun. This year's theme is " Spring Training" in honor of the World Series champion Chicago Cubs big win. Tickets are $120.


2016 Chicago Polar Plunge from SCC/Special Olympics Chicago on Vimeo.

POLAR PLUNGE: While it hasn’t been that cold this winter, we’re willing to bet that the water in Lake Michigan is still a tad bit nippy. A bunch of people will plunge into the freezing water anyway this Sunday, and it’s all in support of Special Olympics Chicago. Past plungers include celebrities like Lady Gaga, Vince Vaughn, Jimmy Fallon and our very own Mayor Emanuel. The first wave goes in at 10 a.m. at North Avenue Beach. Come just to watch the madness or register here to take the plunge. There is no registration fee, but plungers are required to fundraise a minimum of $200.

COCKTAIL CLASS: Learn the secrets of The Violet Hour's expert bartenders at their Cocktails 101 class from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $100. Email or call 773-252-1500 for reservations.