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21 Of Our Favorite Events In Chicago This Week

By Michelle Meywes Kopeny in Arts & Entertainment on Jun 19, 2017 4:02PM

Gregory Porter performs at Millennium Park this Monday. Photo by Shawn Peters.

Summer-summer-summertime brings us another jam-packed week of fun.


MILLENNIUM PARK MUSIC SERIES: The continuing Millennium Park Music Series is all about Jazz this Monday. Grammy winner and singer/songwriter Gregory Porter will be joined on the lineup by local cellist and composer Tomeka Reid representing Chicago’s burgeoning improvised music community. 6:30 p.m. Free.

BACK IN FROM THE COLD: It’s been four years since the last Pink Frost album, but on the just released New Minds the band picks up right where they left off. The group specializes in creating turbulent wind tunnels of noise, driven by tribal drums that sometimes feel more like one continuous fill, creating a sound that sometimes feels as if it’s threatening to rip the listener to shreds. There’s enough dynamic variation in each song to give you the chance to catch your breath though—something like “Circles” is an excellent example of the band’s ability to pummel without decimating you—so it's not completely overwhelming. And there’s even a brief respite here and there, most notably the sweetly affecting, acoustic “Avian.” The band celebrates the album’s release Monday night with a free show at The Empty Bottle.

EX-PAVEMENT AXE MAN: Scott Kannberg a.k.a. Spiral Stairs is best known as one of the co-founders of legendary indie rockers Pavement. Since that band stopped recording in 2008, Kannberg has held a relatively low profile, occasionally surfacing every couple of years to release something under the Preston School Of Industry moniker. He only has one proper solo album, 2009’s The Real Free, so we admit some surprise when his second solo effort, Doris & the Daggers, suddenly appeared earlier this year. It’s a breezy collection of laid-back, catchy indie pop that see Kannberg embracing his more melodically quirky instincts. The result bops along, delighting the ears and drawing smiles, and makes a strong case for being his finest post-Pavement work yet. Spiral Stars plays Monday night at Schubas.


MILLENNIUM PARK FILM SERIES: Catch a classic movie at the Millennium Park Summer Film Series this Thursday. Caddyshack is the featured film this week beginning at 8:30 p.m. The 1980 film stars comedy legends Chevy Chase, Rodney Dangerfield and Bill Murray wreaking havoc on the golf course. Guests may take a seat at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion or lounge on the Great Lawn as the movie is presented on the state-of- the-art, 40-foot LED screen. Free.

ROSE + CRAB DINNER: Say hello to summer with a Rosé & Crab Dinner at Summer House Santa Monica at 6:30 p.m. The evening will feature Maryland Blue Crab, Corn on the Cob, Potatoes and Crunchy Slaw from Executive Chef Ben Goodnick paired with Ramona canned sparkling grapefruit rosé, and their "Left of the Dial" gin, basil & strawberry craft cocktail. Tickets are $95. Call 773-634-4100 or email to reserve a spot.

HISTORY HAPPY HOUR: Get a side of local history with your happy hour at Chicago History Museum from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. This edition of the monthly series features talks from Russell Lewis, Chicago History Museum executive vice president and chief historian, and Liz Garibay, founder of the Chicago Brewseum. Sip on local brews from Evanston’s Sketchbook Brewing Company. Tickets are $15.

SOLO LEMONHEAD: Evan Dando found fame as the heartthrob leader of The Lemonheads, the Boston act that went from punk rockers to slightly surreal power poppers. In 2003 he released his first album under his own name, Baby, I’m Bored, and at the time we remember being a bit confused. Dando is The Lemonheads, so why a solo effort? Upon listening though, it made sense; instead of running the show himself, Dando collaborated with artists including Jon Brion, Howe Gelb, and Royston Langdon to create a delicate and more personal piece of art. Baby, I’m Bored was just reissued with a ton of unreleased material appended to it, and Dando is hitting the road. We’ve seen him with full bands, and we’ve seen him with a single acoustic guitar, and even in his roughest years he has never disappointed us live. Dando plays Tuesday night at Schubas, in a rare chance to see him in such an intimate room.

DANCE DIVAS: Kicking off Dance For Life 2017 is a night for true divas with “high heels and high camp.” Dance Divas, created by Tony Savino, features Chicago’s leading dance men portraying the world’s leading female “dance divas” from film and stage at the famed female impersonation nightclub the Baton Show Lounge. In true diva fashion, guests will have an opportunity to receive their own drag makeover by bidding on a diva before the show. 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Tickets are $50 and include two drinks.


Photo courtesy of Make Music Chicago.

MAKE MUSIC CHICAGO: There will be live music popping up all over the city for the 7th annual Make Music Chicago. The event is modeled after the Parisian musical holiday Fête de la Musique, which now includes 750 cities around the world on the Summer Solstice. From 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. you’ll find artists performing in public spaces citywide including Sousapalooza, singer-songwriters, bands, family-friendly performances and more. For the full schedule, visit Make Music Chicago’s website. Free.

DAYBREAKER: Welcome the Summer Solstice with rooftop yoga at the latest Daybreaker event at Savage Smyth. Yoga begins at 5:30 a.m. and will be followed by a pre-work dance party DJ-ed by Matt Roan from 6:30 to 8:30 a.m. Tickets for both are $35, tickets for the dance party only are $25.

Photo via Shedd Aquarium's Website.

JAZZIN AT THE SHEDD: Shedd Aquarium’s popular after-hours series Jazzin’ at the Shedd begins its season this Wednesday. The weekly summer event from 5 to 10 p.m. features live jazz from local musicians, cool drinks and a relaxed visit with 32,000 sea animals. Tickets are $20.

LIVE PODCAST: WBEZ presents the next Podcast Passport with BuzzFeed's Another Round at Thalia Hall at 8 p.m. The award winning podcast hosted by Tracy Clayton and Heben Nigatu touches on race, gender and pop culture with celebrity guests. This episode’s special guests will be songwriter and vocalist Jamila Woods and sociologist Eve Ewing, plus a performance from Kuumba Lynx, Chicago’s very own youth hip hop arts program. Tickets start at $26.

360 CHICAGO SLEEPOVER: Spend the night at the top of the Hancock during the 360 CHICAGO Observation Deck’s Summer Solstice Sleepover Event. Sunset and sunrise photo ops are the tip of the iceberg at the event benefiting My Block, My City, My Hood. The evening will also include 12-hour access to the TILT thrill ride, board games, DJ entertainment and late-night movies, a magician and refreshments provided by Garrett Popcorn Shops, Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria and Revolution Brewing craft beer and breakfast favorites. Tickets are $94.


MILLENNIUM PARK MUSIC SERIES: Thursday is indie night at the Millennium Park Music Series. Hurray for Riff Raff’s Alynda Segarra brings roots-conscious folk music to the stage while Grammy-nominated artist Matthew Santos brings some local flavor. You might recognize his voice on Lupe Fiasco’s hit song "Superstar." 6:30 p.m. Free.

HIP HOP YOGA: Revival Food Hall and The National Building are offering a special Pride edition of their Summer Outdoor Fitness Series this Thursday at 6:30 a.m. Hip Hop Yoga will be the complementary class this time, with free Pride tanks for all attendees. Register here.


Image via LakeShake's website.

LAKESHAKE: Country music gets its weekend in the sun with the LakeShake Festival at Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island. Rascal Flatts, Miranda Lambert and Thomas Rhett top the three-day lineup. Lawn Passes start at $49.75.

BLACKHAWKS FAN FEST: The NHL Draft takes place at the United Center this weekend, and outside the venue will be the first ever Blackhawks Fan Fest. Pop band Neon Trees are slated to perform on Friday at 5 p.m., plus there will be Blackhawks player and alumni appearances, interactive games and attractions and the NHL Centennial Fan Arena (a 53-foot museum truck, pop-up ball hockey rink, Zamboni virtual reality driving experience, and Stanley Cup appearance). Free Fan Fest Passes are available at the United Center Box Office, and other select locations. Tickets to go inside the United Center for the NHL Draft are $10 and include Fan Fest passes.

WORLD’S LARGEST BLOCK PARTY: The Old St. Pat’s World’s Largest Block Party, which became known as a hot spot to meet your future spouse, returns to it’s roots and original location this weekend. The two-day family friendly event moves back to the church where it originated with a Kid Zone, food trucks and live music from cover and tribute bands like Mike & Joe, Wedding Banned and Elevation. Tickets are $10 at the gate. (Free entrance from 5 to 6 p.m. on Friday).

MSI AFTER HOURS: “Humans Welcome” at the next MSI After Hours event from 7 to 10 p.m. The adults-only evening offers kid-free access to the Museum of Science and Industry exhibits plus snacks, a complimentary cocktail and free parking. Tickets are $30.

SMASHED RELEASE: We are big fans of the 2014 release from The Hushdrops, Tomorrow. So when we learned the band's frontman John San Juan was releasing his first solo album, Smashed, we got pretty excited. Once we heard it, we weren't disappointed; Smashed an impressive collection of songs that feel to have a slightly more personal nature than his previous work, while still retaining a timeless quality and universal feel that makes the messages still feel instantly accessible. The music spans multiple genres, and gives San Juan a chance to show off his prodigious talents, once again proving he may be one of Chicago's most commercially under-appreciated musical geniuses. Friday night’s show at The Hideout will also serve as the Smashed album release party.

DOSE MARKET: Revival Food Hall hosts a Dose Market pop-up bazaar from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Local makers including craftspeople, artists, and designers come together for a to create a free afternoon market.