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21 Of Our Favorite Events In Chicago This Halloween Weekend

By Michelle Meywes Kopeny in Arts & Entertainment on Oct 27, 2017 7:44PM

The weekend for Halloween partying has arrived.


CAMPFIRE HORRORS: Venture to Northerly Island Park for an evening of Campfire Horrors beginning at 7 p.m. The feature film will be the 1968 George A. Romero zombie classic Night of the Living Dead. Marshmallows for roasting will be provided; byo chairs and blankets.

SPOOKY SEAS: Spend the night at Shedd Aquarium with the kids during their Spooky Seas hoopla on Friday. The sleepover will include a pumpkin scavenger hunt, an aquatic presentation and more. Tickets are also available for evening events only without sleeping with the fishes. Tickets start at $40.

SUPPER WITH SNAKES: Bring the family and spend an evening dining with the snakes of the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum from 6 to 8 p.m. Get up close and personal with the slithery snakes and other creatures and take part in games, crafts and a costume contest. Tickets are $25.

Image via City Winery's website.

BUBBLES + BLADES SABER SOIREE: Who here hasn't dreamed about sabering open a champagne bottle? Impress your friends with your newly acquired sabrage skills after attending City Winery and J Vineyard’s Bubbles and Blades Saber Soirée from 7 to 9 p.m. They’ll provide hands-on instruction along with J Brut Sparkling Rosé and light hors d’oeuvres to enjoy. Tickets are $60.

LEGENDARY PRODUCER AND LOCAL HEROES: American Cosmonaut blend shoegaze-heavy riffs with a strong melodic underpinning. That’d be enough to get us out to this early 6 p.m. show at The Whistler. But the headlining act includes producer Andy Wallace who started his career with the Run-DMC/Aerosmith collaboration on "Walk This Way" before moving on to produce everyone from Faith No More to Bruce Springsteen.

EXQUISITE CORPSE BALL: See local bands masquerading as other, legendary bands during the 9th Annual Exquisite Corpse Ball at SubT at 9 p.m. The Daytonics will play as The Rolling Stones, The Handcuffs perform the hits of George Harrison, Kid Million does Jane’s Addiction and more, all to benefit the nonprofit Intonation Music. Tickets are $10 ($12 door).

COURTNEY AND KURT TAKE CHICAGO: The collaboration from Courtney Barnett and Kurt Vile was hotly anticipated, and luckily for everyone the result, Lotta Sea Lice, is no letdown. The duo bring out the best in each other—Vile's meandering musical approach contrasts nicely with Barnett's more focused storytelling, and both singers' voices mesh incredibly well. To promote the album, Barnett and Vile are playing multiple dates in Chicago, hitting Thalia Hall on Oct. 27 and The Empty Bottle on Oct. 28. Opening is Australian Jen Cloher, whose recently released self-titled album takes a mid-tempo approach to lyrical wanderings that at time evoke latter-era Lou Reed.


Image via Intercontinental's Facebook page.

LIVE PUMPKIN CARVING: See a real pro carving a 100-pound pumpkin this Saturday at InterContinental Chicago from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Local artist Edward Cabral will be live-demoing elaborate carvings such as The Bean, a replica of the InterContinental Chicago hotel and other iconic Chicago spots. They’ll also have “Cozy Trick-or-Treat” in the ballrooms and cider, sweet treats and other samples from Michael Jordan’s Steak House and ENO Wine Bar. Free.

TILT OR TREAT: Grab the kids and take them up 94 floors for a trick or treat alternative. 360CHICAGO at the John Hancock Observatory hosts a “TILT or Treat” party every day through Halloween. TILT rides are complimentary for costumed guests, plus there will be entertainment on Sunday Funday and Zombie Brain Shots for adults. Visit their website for ticket information.

Image via Garfield Park Conservatory's Facebook page.

CREATURES OF THE NIGHT: Visit with Creatures of the Night during the day at Garfield Park Conservatory from noon to 3 p.m. The family friendly event includes hands-on activities, treats and a Monster Mash Costume Bash. Entry is a $5 suggested donation.

WHICH ONE'S PINK?: Look, we have multiple issues with how Ariel Pink has presented himself in the past, however his recent album Dedicated to Bobby Jameson is the first thing Pink has recored that makes us think the dude might have a talented bone in his body. Usually we’d only recommend a show from him for the train-wreck possibilities, but on this tour you might actually see an artists growing into maturity. Pink plays Thalia Hall this Saturday night.

THE BIG SL-EASY DINNER: Popular Macanese spot Fat Rice brings the Big Easy to life (or death) with a one night only prix fixe dinner with cocktail pairings at 8:30 p.m. The Big Sl-Easy: All Hallow’s Eve Jazz Funeral will serve up grenades-gone-wrong, the-king-is-dead cake with bloody boudin and much more from Chef Abraham Conlon. Tickets are $125.

A TWILIGHT ZONE: Venture to the 13th floor of the Chicago Athletic Association hotel for A Twilight Zone. Enter the rooftop portal and explore the hotel’s transformed suites during an event that rides the line between sensory-defying haunted house and downtown dance party. Tickets are $75.

STRANGER PINGS: Everyone’s favorite spooky Netflix show is back this weekend for it’s second season, and AceBounce is reviving it’s “Stranger Pings” party at 9 p.m. Enter the Upside Down with free ping pong all night and a call bar and bites. Tickets start at $30.

HAUNTED HOTEL: Explore the “hidden horrors” within the walls of The Godfrey during Haunted Hotel beginning at 8 p.m. The party will be on the fourth floor at I|O Godfrey’s indoor/outdoor rooftop lounge, but then the bravest guests will venture to 20 haunted rooms on the fifth level. The rooms are even available for overnight booking...if you dare. Admission starts at $20.

HALLOWEEN IS COMING: Enter the House of Conrad for the hotel’s Game of Thrones-themed Halloween Party beginning at 7 p.m. Enter by climbing the wall up to Westeros and Essos (aka Noyane, the Conrad’s rooftop) and enjoy cocktails and costumes. Tickets are $25.


SHAPING SOUND: So You Think You Can Dance star Travis Wall brings his company Shaping Sound to the Chicago Theatre this Sunday at 6 p.m. Following the success of their four-year tour, After The Curtain is the company’s second show, taking on the heart-wrenching story of a man fighting to find his creative voice after the death of his true love. Tickets start at $25.

ICP: An Insane Clown Posse concert is more than just songs, it’s an experience. Join the duo and their faithful juggalo following for The Great Milenko Tour this Sunday at Portage Theater. They’ll celebrate the album’s 20th Anniversary with special guests. Tickets start at $30.

Image via City Winery's website.

VINYASA AND VINO: Cap a 75-minute yoga session with a wine tasting at City Winery this Sunday from 2 to 4 p.m. Twenty-year yoga veteran Maria Rosner will lead the class (outdoor, weather dependent) and the tasting of City Winery’s own vino. Tickets are $35.

ANDERSONVILLE DESSERT CRAWL: The Andersonville Dessert Crawl returns for it’s final year before being rolled into the neighborhood’s Taste of Andersonville Dinner Crawl. Enjoy all the sweets, cakes, gummies and smoothies you can get your hands on from 2 to 5 p.m. Opt for one of two routes: “Gumdrop Mountains” or “Peppermint Forest”, each featuring 11 destinations. Tickets are $30.

BOP ALONG INDIE POP: The Courtneys II is filled with bouncy, fuzzy girl-group-inspired indie pop. It's simple but effective and gets you humming along without realizing it long after the album is over. Catch them Sunday night at Beat Kitchen.