The weather is looking to be perfect this weekend so go out and explore our wonderful city. Maybe take in a festival or two? How about a concert or a benefit show? There’s just so much including readings, art exhibitions, comedy, and an alternative comic expo waiting for you! So don’t let these great events pass you by, head out there and enjoy!
Let’s get on with your curated weekend!
ALL WEEKEND LONG, MAY 31st – JUNE 3rd
Maifest 2018 @ Lincoln & Leland Ave., various times (see poster), All Ages
WHAT: Think Oktoberfest, but in May
SO WHAT: Mayfest (Maifest in German) is the traditional German celebration of the arrival of spring. Maifest is still celebrated throughout Germany with the maypole (maibaum) decorated to show off the history and crafts of the local village or town. Mayfest Chicago benefits a number of German organizations including the Dank Haus, the American Aid Society, the Donauschwaben Youth Group, German American Policy and others. Expect some delicious food, entertainment, and cultural activities to fill your weekend!
NOW WHAT: Come out and support Lincoln Square’s cultural center!
THURSDAY, MAY 31st
Marvin Tate and Avery R. Young @ The Art Institute of Chicago, 111 S Michigan Ave, 6:00pm – 7:00pm, All Ages
WHAT: Wonderful performances from two local legends
SO WHAT: Noted Chicago poets and vocalists Marvin Tate and Avery R. Young will respond to the exhibition “Never a Lovely So Real: Photography and Film in Chicago, 1950–1980” with spoken word and live music performances.
NOW WHAT: This event is free to Illinois residents or with museum admission. Museum admission is free for Illinois residents every Thursday, 5:00–8:00—including during this event.
Best F(r)iends w/ Greg Sestero @ Music Box Theatre, 3733 N Southport Ave, 7:30pm, All ages with an adult or guardian
WHAT: The on-screen reunion we’ve all been waiting for
SO WHAT: Join Greg Sestero at the Music Box Theatre for a special screening of Best F(r)iends. 15 years after making The Room, Sestero and Tommy Wiseau are back on screen together for a brand new film. Sestero will be on hand to answer all your burning questions during a post-film Q&A session.
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $12 for this one-night-only event
Kill Scenes / Sam Larson / Magic Ian @ Cafe Mustache, 2313 N Milwaukee Ave., 8:00pm, 21+
WHAT: Tapes and vinyl and bad ass tunes
SO WHAT: Stop by Cafe Mustache for this excellent show of local talents including the dark and dreamy beats of Kill Scenes (who are celebrating their vinyl release),
Sam Larson‘s cool electro vibes that run through some heartbreaking pop, and the eccentric lo-fi post-punk Magic Ian (celebrating his tape release)!
NOW WHAT: It’s free! Enjoy the music!
Ted Leo and The Pharmacists performing “Hearts of Oak” @ Empty Bottle, 1035 N Western Ave, 8:30pm, 21+
WHAT: The return of the amazing Ted Leo to Chicago
SO WHAT: It’s been a little while since Ted Leo + The Pharmacists have come out with an album, so the release of The Hanged Man is something to celebrate! The album is self released by Leo and delves deep into personal and politic issues, making it one of the most interesting and emotionally bold of his career. If his performance at last year’s Goose Island’s Block Party is any indication, this show is going to be phenomenal.
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $25 and will be available on the day of the show! So set your timers and get ready to get those last tickets!
FRIDAY – SUNDAY, JUNE 1st- 3rd
Do Division Street Fest & Sidewalk Sale @ Division, from Ashland to Leavitt, 2000 W Division St, Noon – 10:00pm, all ages
WHAT: Local vendors and restaurants between two amazing stages full of music.
SO WHAT: The Do Division Street Fest and Sidewalk Sale takes place on 10 city blocks, on Division Street from Ashland to Leavitt , and features two live music stages, a family stage, and a wide variety of local vendors and food! Empty Bottle Presents and Subterranean have curated the stages, which will include performances from La Luz, Ted Leo and the Pharmacists, Bad Bad Hats, Lala Lala, Modern Vices, & Peel!
NOW WHAT: The festival requests a $10 donation that will benefit the West Town Chamber of Commerce and local schools.
Chicago Doomed and Stoned Festival @ Reggies Rock Club, 2105 S State St, 6:00pm, 21+
WHAT: A community driven festival that aims to recognize local musicians, artisans, and merchants.
SO WHAT: Bands from all across the country will come together for three days to bring you the very best in heavy music for this unique festival, highlighting some of Chicagoland’s greatest bands that span all the genres from stoner rock to soul gripping sludge. Check out their full lineup and get ready to have your face melted.
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $20 per day or $50 for a three day pass!
FRIDAY, JUNE 1st
SLAPS! A National Sticker Art Exhibition @ Casa Calle 20, 1538 W Cullerton St, 6:00pm – 10:00pm, all ages
WHAT: Cool sticker art for you to view
SO WHAT: SLAPS!, curated by Kawaii Suga & egobooty, is a collection of USPS sticker art from artists around the nation. These “slaps” can be found all over major cities and are often seen as vandalism. For this exhibition, this art form will move from the streets and be placed in an intimate gallery setting to challenge the idea of what is and isn’t worthy of “high art” praise.
NOW WHAT: This opening reception is free and the show will be up the entire month of June! In addition to the show, Casa Calle 20 will be collecting items to donate to “Support the girls.”
First Annual Elastic Arts Benefit @ Elastic Arts, 3429 W Diversey Ave #208, 7:00pm, 21+
WHAT: The first Elastic Arts Benefit!
SO WHAT: 2018 marks the 20th year since a group of adventurous performers began to coalesce into the collective that would soon lead to Elastic Arts. The night will consist of a series of performances representing Elastic’s myriad adventurous programming followed by an afterparty with DJ John Simmons. Their new arts curator, Kim Alpert, has organized a photo retrospective celebrating 20 years of Elastic that will be on display. Food will be provided courtesy of Fat Rice along with beer from Hopewell Brewing Company and other beverages from Parce Rum. There will be a silent auction with items from Pitchfork Music Festival, The Logan Theatre, Revolution Brewing, Hausu Mountain, Numero Group and many more!
NOW WHAT: Tickets start at $20 for just the DJ Party
CAKE Kick-off: 5 Cartoonists 1 City: Minneapolis Showcase @ Quimby’s, 1854 W North Ave, 7:00pm – 8:00pm
WHAT: Before two days of CAKE, enjoy this little slice of Minneapolis
SO WHAT: This year’s CAKE Kick-off event is a showcase of one of the Midwest’s greatest comics presses, Uncivilized Books. Come to hear Zak Sally, Tom Kaczynski, M.S. Harkness, Jenny Schmid, and Tim Sievert read from their eclectic and amazing comics. For more info what exactly they’ll be reading, head to the showcase’s event page!
NOW WHAT: Much like CAKE, this Quimby‘s event is free!
826CHI Benefit: Prologue @ American Writers Museum, 180 N Michigan Ave, 7:00pm – 10:00pm, 21+
WHAT: Prologue is Chicago’s premier literary cocktail party, hosted by 826CHI’s Associate Board
SO WHAT: This is the amazing event’s fifth year of bringing together current and future authors, book lovers, and hundreds of supporters of 826CHI’s nonprofit creative writing and tutoring center. Spend the evening with hors d’oeuvres, open bar, and a raffle of luxe prize packages as well as readings of the curious and wonderful stories created by 826CHI’s student writers spanning first grade through high school.
NOW WHAT: Tickets for this event are $85. Attendees will be supporting a great cause, meet amazing and talented writers, and explore the fabulous American Writers Museum at this wonderful event.
Humboldt Pie @ Slate Arts, 3203 W North Ave, 8:00pm – 10:00pm
WHAT: Contemporary meets classic with Slate’s newest residency – a monthly stand up comedy showcase!
SO WHAT: Keeping with Slate’s mission, Humboldt Pie (hosted by Madeleine Russell) will bring diverse, fresh, contemporary, not to mention gut busting comedic voices to Kedzie and North Ave the first Friday of every month!
NOW WHAT: There is a $5 suggested donation fro this great BYOB comedy show!
SATURDAY & SUNDAY, JUNE 2nd & 3rd
Chicago Alternative Comics Expo (CAKE) @ Center on Halsted, 3656 N. Halsted St. 11:00am – 6:00pm, All Ages
WHAT: An alternative to the typical comic book fare
SO WHAT: Chicago Alternative Comics Expo (CAKE) is a weekend-long celebration of independent comics. The event is inspired by Chicago’s long history as home to many of underground and alternative comics’ most talented artists. CAKE is dedicated to fostering the comics community and opening dialogue between independent artists, small presses, publishers, and readers. This cool event will have comics for sale, workshops, exhibitions, panel discussions, and more. You can check out the schedule of panels and workshops here. This year’s special guests will include: Tony Breed, Eddie Campbell, Nick Drnaso, Nicole Hollander, Audrey Niffenegger, Mimi Pond, Fiona Smyth, Carol Tyler, Georgia Webber, Jim Woodring, Gina Wynbrandt, and Bianca Xunise!
NOW WHAT: This event is free, so go out and discover the world of alternative comics.
SATURDAY, JUNE 2nd
Bourbon Barrel Aged Toasted Marshmallow Fun Size Bottle Release @ Pollyanna Brewing Company, 431 Talcott Ave. Lemont, IL & 245 E Main S, Roselle, IL, Noon – 11:00pm, 21+
WHAT: Tasty and unique brews
SO WHAT: Pastry stout fans rejoice! Bourbon Barrel Aged Toasted Marshmallow Fun Size is finally coming out of their barrels and into bottles and kegs for you to enjoy! Bottles and draft sales will get going at both breweries at Noon. This will likely be a tap room only beer and not available for distribution, so stop by and get yourself some delicious beer!
NOW WHAT: The Bourbon Barrel Aged Toasted Marshmallow Fun Size will cost $10 per 500mL bottle(tax included), with a 6 bottle limit!
The 4th Annual Prom-A-Llama @ Chop Shop, 2033 W North Ave, 7:00pm, 21+
WHAT: The 4th Annual Prom-A-Llama returns for its biggest year yet.
SO WHAT: This awesome adult prom will featuring some of the city’s best talent all performing special one-night-only cover sets. Musical artists include Springtime Carnivore, Daryn Alexus, Family Of Geniuses and Emily Blue. Expect a jam packed night full of special guests, photo booth fun, snacks, games and the dance floor of your dreams. Come dressed to impress for the most fabulous night of the year
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $25 currently available! This is one prom you will not forget.
The Onion Comedy & Arts Festival: Helltrap Nightmare @ Hideout, 1354 W Wabansia Ave, 10:00pm, 21+
WHAT: wait… are those penis mushrooms and breast flowers shooting out milk while the butthole sun poops? I’m suddenly very scared but delightfully intrigued.
SO WHAT: You know what goes great with comedy? Horror, leaky blob of weird, and noisy terror sounds. Join amazing comedians like Sarah Squirm, Shrimp Boys, Scott Egleston, Imp Queen, Mary Williamson, and Sammy Arechar as they prove just how fun this showcase can be!
NOW WHAT: Let go of your preconceived notions of reality and comedy. Just give into the horror for only $10.
SUNDAY, JUNE 3rd
Deerhoof / Not For You / Solid Freex @ The Empty Bottle,1035 N Western Ave, 8:30pm, 21+
WHAT: The kind of musical insanity you want to cap off your weekend!
SO WHAT: Deerhoof is made up of John Dieterich, Satomi Matsuzaki, Ed Rodriguez and Greg Saunier. For over 20 years, the group has been championing a sense of fearless inventiveness that has made them one of the most inspiring and important groups making music today. The last time they were at the Bottle they absolutely killed it and this show is destined to be just as great! Joining them will the dreamy and noisy shoegaze of Not For You and the hardcore punk of Solid Freex!
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 day of show!
21st Century Chorale presents Touch the Universe @ Curtiss Hall Fine Arts Building 410 S. Michigan Ave, 5:00pm – 7:00pm
WHAT: An evening of excellent classical sounds
SO WHAT: The 21st Century Chorale, a women’s choir led by Martha Swisher, presents Touch the Universe, its second concert of the season. The program includes the world premiere of When Death Comes, which Chicago composer Carl Kennedy based on the poem by Mary Oliver.
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $35 VIP; $25 general admission, $20 students/seniors.
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