Your Chicago Curated Weekend: 7/8 and Beyond

Chicago is currently fully reopened and a new normal is now rapidly coming as in-person events begin to overtake the digital ones (having both as an option would be cool). However many venues will still want to operate at lower capacities, masks are still required for many, and social distancing is a must. As we said in the one-year anniversary of the #StaytheFHome Curated Weekend, we need to continue being careful if we go out and if you’re still a little wary about it, support the local arts scenes we enjoy from home. Virtual events will continue to be highlighted and encouraged. But if you feel comfortable going out, do so with a mask and social distance. Now, let's get on with your Chicago Curated Weekend! And if you're opting to stay home, then let's find something fun to do! Whether you're doing your part in fighting against police brutality, working out, trying out some new recipes, or whatever catches your fancy; you may still have a few hours in your day that need filling up. There are tons of fun ideas highlighted in this week's curated weekend including some from previous #StaytheFHome editions where the editors here at Third Coast Review suggested a few things you can enjoy while you're at home during these social distancing, self-quarantining days! Since we're all still in this together, we encourage you to check out Do312's running list of venues that could use some love! Donate if you can and remember to support them by going to shows once it's safe to do so! Stay home and stay safe and healthy. Listen to our healthcare policy experts. Science matters. Wear a mask. Keep washing your hands. And check in on 3CR, where we promote the arts for everyone's sake.


Fulton Street Collective Jazz Series @ ​Fulton Street Collective & Their YouTube channel, 1821 W. Hubbard St, Suite 307, or the coziest spot in your home, 8:00pm WHAT: Some excellent jazz for your evening SO WHAT: Fulton Street Collective are back with in person events, but they are still determined to give Chicago its much needed dose of jazz at home! Most of their shows are also streaming so you can see and hear the beautiful music on their YouTube channel! Below are just some of the upcoming shows from the collective. NOW WHAT: The shows are free online, but in person there is a $15 suggested donation! Also you should definitely support Fulton Street Collective by becoming a member!


Ganser Residency @ Empty Bottle, 1035 N Western Ave , Doors at 7:30pm, 21+ WHAT: Another excellent residency at Empty Bottle SO WHAT: It's been nearly a year since wix released their noisy and immaculate album Just Look At That Sky. What should have been a year of incredible live shows has been bottled up because of the pandemic and these three shows are sure to be an incredible sight and sound. NOW WHAT: Tickets are sold out in advance, BUT there will be a limited number of tickets at the door. SO, get there early and get yourself a spot at this show.


Taste of Chicago To-Go 2021 @ Various Locations & Austin Town Hall City Market, 5610 W. Lake St., WHAT: A Chicago food tradition is back in a new form! SO WHAT: Taste of Chicago To-Go will return this summer with special events around the city! Instead of one big area, the food-centric event will feature nearly 40 participating eateries across the city and will be hosting Pop-Up Taste events with tons of food vendors and cooking demonstrations. Plus the return of the “Community Eats” community meals program, and other special events promoting Chicago’s amazing restaurant industry. You can check out the rest of the schedule at their website and highlights below!
  • July 8 - Austin Town Hall City Market (5610 W. Lake St) featuring food vendors, food trucks and House music - Noon to 7pm
  • July 9
    • 4pm-8pm - Taste of Chicago To-Go Presents Puerto Rican Food, Coffee and Storytelling featuring a conversation with Marisel Vera, author of “The Taste of Sugar,” at ¡WEPA! Mercado del Pueblo (2559 W. Division St.)
    • 5pm-8pm - Special “Taste-ing” event at Goose Island Brewery’s Tap Room (1800 W. Fulton St.) featuring a wide array of Goose Island’s brews and a one-night-only “TASTE of CHICAGO” pint
  • July 10
    • 10am-2pm – A “taste” of the unique and bold flavors of The Hatchery (135 N. Kedzie Ave.)
    • 10am-4pm – A one-day food and music event with Robinson’s No. 1 Ribs & Eli’s Cheesecake Company (6701 W. Forest Preserve Dr. at the intersection of Forest Preserve / Montrose / Normandy)
    • 1pm-8pm – Food vendors, dining tents, family programing, DJs and other performances in the West Englewood neighborhood (1744 W. 63rd St.).
  • July 11
NOW WHAT: Head out if you feel comfortable and go support some great local restaurants! Windy City Smokeout @ United Center, 1901 W Madison St, Various Times WHAT: BBQ, beer, and all the country music you could wish for! SO WHAT: Your favorite country music festival is back at the United Center parking lot for four(!) full days of summer fun! In addition to all the great BBQ from the world’s best pitmasters and beers from fantastic breweries that Windy City Smokeout provides, you’ll get the chance to check out headliners like Brett Eldredge, Darius Rucker, Dierks Bentley, Jon Pardi, and more! NOW WHAT: Tickets are available now but selling out fast! Windy City Smokeout has partnered with Health Pass by CLEAR, which provides a secure, digital proof of COVID-related health insights via free mobile app. Check out more info about their COVID Guidelines and other information on their FAQ page! Ester & Orisun / Minor Moon & Sarah Weddle / Horsegirl & Lifeguard / Schubas Open Mic @ Schubas, , Doors at 7:30pm, 21+ WHAT: A full weekend of amazing shows at Lincoln Hall and Schubas! SO WHAT: Things have opened back up for the most part and two of our favorite venues are stacking up some stellar linueps! Check out what Schubas has going on this weekend. NOW WHAT: Head out to Schubas and enjoy this great lineup of shows!


Wild Earp & the Free for Alls Record Release! w/ Cat Mullins & Themboys @ Sleeping Village, 3734 W Belmont Ave., 9:00pm WHAT: Take a little trip across Americana SO WHAT: Wild Earp & the Free for Alls will be bringing their incredible sounds to Sleeping Village, just one week after Wild Earp hosts Cosmic Country and Prairie School’s Final Frontier Land. Tonight’s show will focus on Wild Earp’s fantastic take on country, rockabilly, and more American music dominated by his energetic croon; all backed by the Free For All’s enthusiastic instrumentation. Joining them for this spirited record release show will be Cat Mullins & Themboys! NOW WHAT: Tickets are $15 for this country twinged show!


Laurenzi/Cunningham & Frequency Series Presents: Ido String Quartet @ Constellation, 3111 N Western Ave, the most musically inclined room in your home, 8:30pm WHAT: An amazing pair of shows for your weekend! SO WHAT: Constellation has been putting on some incredible shows during the pandemic and this weekend is no different! Whether you decide to stay home and watch the livestreams or head out to the venue and enjoy the live music in person, Constellation is a great way to spend the night! Check out some of the upcoming shows below! NOW WHAT: Tickets are $15, head out and enjoy the incredible shows this weekend! There is also a streaming option, so if you stay home, be sure to donate to support Constellation!


Lincoln Square Artisan & Makers Market @ Ainslie Arts Plaza, 4844 N Lincoln Ave, 10:00am - 3:00pm, all ages WHAT: A little summer shopping SO WHAT: Stroll through a rotating selection of local artists and makers selling a variety of beautiful items. Beer and wine will also be available on-site from Bottles & Cans. NOW WHAT: Admission is free! Check out the list of vendors and when they’ll be at the market here!
Summer Concert Series w/ Modern Day Romeos and Queen Explosion @ Copernicus Center, 5216 W Lawrence Ave, 5:00pm - 10:00pm WHAT: An eight-week outdoor concert series! SO WHAT: Music lovers of all ages can come enjoy live bands at the Copernicus Center in Jefferson Park thanks to the Copernicus Foundation’s fun Outdoor Summer Concert Series. Enjoy drinks and snacks from a full bar and kitchen as you dance the evening away to some cover bands playing the hits! Tonight features Modern Day Romeos and Queen Explosion! Check out the full lineup below and at their website!
NOW WHAT: Doors open at 5pm for all these shows and GA is $10. A full series pass is available for $49!


Southport Art Fest @ Southport Corridor, W. Waveland Ave. & N. Southport Ave., 10:00am - 7:00pm WHAT: A art filled trek down Southport Corridor SO WHAT: Southport Art Fest will showcase a diverse range of artists creating fine art from numerous art forms, setting the environment for a picture-perfect Chicago neighborhood street festival. There will also be a special Kid’s area full of interactive games and activities that will make for an fun wholesome time. NOW WHAT: Admission is free, go an enjoy some great art and buy some for you home! Illinois Brewery Running Series @ Burning Bush Brewery & Twisted Hippo, Saturday 10:30am - 1:00pm, Sunday 2:00pm - 5:00pm WHAT:A fun run for beer! SO WHAT: Take a quick run and be rewarded with a beer at these series of 5k walks and runs! All the Illinois Brewery Running Series events are untimed, emphasizing a fun time more than anything else! All the runs include one beer, collector’s glassware or seasonal swag item, and an invitation to enjoy the day’s scheduled festivities like live music, food, goodies, and giveaways! This weekend includes runs at: NOW WHAT: Tickets are $30 (or $45 which gives you a shirt)! Click the ticket links above! 10% of proceeds help support a growing list of nonprofits like Chicago Parks Foundation, Chicago Run, and Survivor Vision! There is a chance to volunteer! These runs will be respecting all COVID-19 safety guidelines as outlined by the CDC and the local department of health.


Sundays on State @ State Street from Lake to Madison, 11:00am - 8:00pm WHAT: From Lake to Madison, State Street becomes an open street full of surprises! SO WHAT: Neighbors from every Chicago community and beyond are invited for this interactive block party that will let you safely enjoy art, culture, active recreation, retail, bars, restaurants, and local attractions! Experience everyone’s neighborhood, the Loop, like never before! NOW WHAT: This fantastic way to spend your Sundays this summer is FREE! Sundays on State will strictly follow all public health guidelines in place at the time of each event. Pilsen Vendor Market @ Pilsen Art House, 1756 W 19th St., Noon - 5:00pm WHAT: A socially distanced mini handmade market! SO WHAT: This is a weekly market for artists and makers to come together, make new friends and sell their wonderful wares. NOW WHAT:Entry is free, just be sure to wear your mask as they are required! Jon Langford and His Fancy Men feat. Sally Timms @ Sketchbook Brewing, 4901 Main St., Skokie. Doors at 6:00pm, Under 21 with a parent or guardian WHAT: The final night of Space's three-show stretch at Sketchbook Brewing SO WHAT: Jon Langford may have been born in Wales, but he has called Chicago home for quite some time. He has become synonymous with the label Bloodshot Records; he's a fixture of the Chicago music scene; blending country, folk, and punk rock together and apart; and has been in tons of bands (one of many things that all the groups in this Space x Sketchbook Brrewing Lineup have in common). As long as Langford is on the lineup, you know the band is going to be good. Langford will be playing with frequent collaborators, His Fancy Men (featuring Al Doughty, John Szymanski, and Dan Massey) and Sally Timms, to close out the final night of these shows. NOW WHAT: The Space x Sketch Brewing tickets have been selling out quickly so don't hesitate! Tickets are $35 for this great show !


Neon Summer Chicago @ Neon Summer, 1265 W Le Moyne St., Various times WHAT: A family friendly summer pop up SO WHAT: Neon Summer takes over two acres of Chicago for a pop-up that splits its time between family friendly daytime fun and late night party!  The pop-up provides access to a go-kart track, a miniature golf course, axe throwing, plenty of fun photo ops, a nice assortment of food, and of course NEON! There are multiple bars serving drinks throughout the venue including alcohol for those 21+ . NOW WHAT: Tickets start at $19 and vary based on the chosen timed entry and the activities you want to partake in! Check out their website for full ticketing details!

Back on the Big Screen and Virtual Cinema @ Music Box Theatre, unsurprisingly at your home, any time you want to watch a movie WHAT: A great way to support a great local theater SO WHAT: The Music Box Theatre is currently open to the public, so if you feel comfortable you can go out and have a theatre experience this weekend with I Carry You With Me and a special presntation of the Lord of the Rings Trilogy in 35mm(!!!); and Music Box Garden Movies like Carrie (final screening July 8), Waiting for Guffman, and Drop Dead Gorgeous! But if you want to watch some first run movies at home, you can still watch great moves and support them online! They are currently screening films via their The Music Box Direct series! There also tons of select titles available on their new platform! NOW WHAT: Digital tickets are $12, in person screenings are $11, so sit back and enjoy!
Film Center from Your Sofa @ The Gene Siskel Film Center of the School of the Art Institute, your couch or preferred movie watching spot in your place, pretty much any time WHAT: The Film Center at Home SO WHAT:The Gene Siskel Film Center of the School of the Art Institute Will be opening back up on August 6th, but in the meantime they are continuing their excellent series Film Center from Your Sofa .This is a fun way to stay in digital touch with the Film Center and watch some great films from the comfort of home! Head over to their listings and start watching! NOW WHAT: Digital tickets are $12, so sit back and enjoy! Pitch In for the Parks! @ Various local parks, Various times, all ages WHAT: A good way to keep your community nice and clean! SO WHAT: The nonprofit Chicago Parks Foundation (CPF) is currently in the second season of its citywide volunteer effort “Pitch In for the Parks!” to help keep the city’s 600+ public parks clean. The program is open to anyone who wants to host a clean-up group or join an existing event from the interactive map on the CPF website. CPF is providing trash pick-up supplies, volunteer coordination and safety guidelines to support the parks’ ongoing maintenance from June through October. NOW WHAT: Clean-ups continue at parks citywide June 1st-October. Anyone can host a Pitch In clean-up group or join a free volunteer event on their calendar.    New Talks and Video Archives @ Chicago Humanities Festival YouTube channel, your favorite browser or YouTube's app, any time you want some inspiration, All Ages WHAT: Interesting conversations with interesting people! SO WHAT: Chicago Humanities Festival will be back with in person events so soon! They always bring some of the best ideas to the surface with entertaining programming that captures your imagination. Their website is constantly updated with new talks, so check out the wealth of upcoming and previous events in their archives! Below is just a taste of what is coming in the next few weeks NOW WHAT: Head over to take a look at their past events here! You should also sign up for their email list to get updates on upcoming talks in 2021. Lyric Opera Streaming On Demand @ Your favorite streaming device, the most lavish spot in your home WHAT: The Lyric Opera at home SO WHAT: Revisit some of your favorite Lyric moments, or experience for the first time performances you've missed.Check out their website for schedule of upcoming shows. Currently streaming is Luisa Miller (2019), The Queen of Spades (2020), and Die Walküre (2017). NOW WHAT: It's free!! Steppenwolf NOW @ Your best streaming device, the most theatrical spot in your place, Any time through August 31, 2021 WHAT: The talented voices of Steppenwolf's ensemble beamed straight into your home SO WHAT: Steppenwolf NOW is a new virtual programming stream featuring a dynamic and innovative slate of immersive and visual experiences crafted and produced for the virtual platform. Membership will let you experience a one-time screening of the current lineup of six projects each until August 31, 2021. The newest production is Duchess! Duchess! Duchess! NOW WHAT: The membership is $75 and a great way to experience six great shows and support a local institution. The Great Grow Along @ Your home, next to your soon-to-be-thriving home garden, Friday 1:00pm - 5:00pm, Saturday 10:00am - 5:00pm, and Sunday 1:00pm - 3:45pm WHAT: A chance to make your thumb a little greener SO WHAT: The Great Grow Along was a three-day virtual garden festival that will provide gardeners with 40+ hours of sessions with plant pros to help up everyone's growing game! There will be learning tracks to guide you through the talks and they have made the festival's content available on demand to watch at your own pace over the next six months! NOW  WHAT: Tickets are $29.95 for this great collection of gardening talks! Fun Times with Local Museums @ the comfort of your own home, a various collection of websites, whenever you want a little dose of educational fun, All Ages WHAT: A chance to explore and help out some great local museums during these quarantine days SO WHAT: Our incredible Museums editor Mariel Bokor has compiled a great list of interesting programming available from museums like the Art Institute of Chicago, the Field Museum, MSI, the Shedd Aquarium, and the Adler Planetarium during this stay at home time. It also notes which are closed for the season and how you can help support them during these times! NOW WHAT: Check out our most recent update on what museums are doing as they reopen and continue their online presence!
The Infinite Wrench Goes Viral 30 Digital Plays in 60 Analog Minutes @ The Neo Futurists' Patreon, one episode a week, 14+ WHAT: Quick plays online! SO WHAT: The Infinite Wrench Goes Viral! 30 Digital Plays in 60 Analog Minutesis the online adaptation of the Neo-Futurists', ongoing, ever-changing attempt to perform 30 plays in 60 minutes for a live audience. Since live audiences are still a no-no, this is the perfect way to experience this fun project from home! They also just released 45 Plays for America’s First Ladies, a series of 1-5 minute plays that adopt a variety of shapes, tones, and theatrical conventions centered around the lives of the women who have served in the role of First Lady. NOW WHAT: Join the Neo Futurists' Patreon page for either $3, $5, or $9 a week (with added incentives in the higher tiers) and enjoy the 30 plays in an hour every week! Concerts Live-streams and Local Shows Archives @ Your House, Any time you please, All Ages WHAT: There's tons of concerts from Chicago's yesteryear available online for your enjoyment! SO WHAT: Oh My Rockness and Do312 has done a fantastic job of cataloging some of the upcoming live-streams from the awesome musical acts out there! Check out Oh My Rockness' listings here, Do312's roundup of shows here, and tune in to these great shows from the comfort of home! Do312 have also shared some past Chicago shows that are certainly worth of a watch. There are also so many great local concerts recorded for posterity and what better time to check them all out than during this self isolation period. Audiotree has a fantastic and huge list of sessions with links to band's websites and merch to help support them even more. In addition to our previous recommendations like Fran, Tasha, KAINA, Divino Nino, and The Ophelias, we also recommend ROOKIE, Emily Blue, Sen Morimoto, Beach Bunny, Tennis, and Gia Margaret! Then head over to their record concerts from Lincoln Hall, Schubas, and beyond to check out Orville Peck, of Montreal, and so many more! JBTV is also a fantastic resource for sessions from bands that have come through Chicago! Just take a look at this playlist of Blind Melon's '95 set at Metro! NOW WHAT: Stay home, watch some live music, and be sure to check out your favorite artists' social media, you never know who might be live streaming next! Video Games @ Your home PC or Console, As long as it takes, Just check the game rating WHAT: Video-games for all! SO WHAT: Check out our games page for some recommendations of what games to download (and avoid) while we're stuck at home. If you're a PC user, head over to the Epic Games store as they will be releasing a few new FREE games for you to download ! There are also tons of free games on Twitch Prime waiting for you to download! NOW WHAT: Wash your hands and dive head first into some fun games! Bring the Zoo to You @ Brookfield Zoo's Facebook page, when you want to see some animals besides your pets or specifically 11:00am, All Ages WHAT: A great way to make your kids' time at home entertaining and educational NOW WHAT: Join Brookfield Zoo on Facebook every weekday at 11:00am for a "Bring The Zoo To You" Facebook Live featuring one of their animals as well as plenty of educational, informative insight from one of our Animal Care Specialists. If you can't make it at 11, that's okay. The video will be saved afterward on Facebook as well as on their YouTube channel. SO WHAT: Just jump in to the chat at their Facebook page to learn something new Masque of the Red Coronavirus! @ Black Button Eyes Productions, Any time on your computer or mobile device. For 18+. WHAT: Written by Black Button Eyes Productions producing artistic director Ed Rutherford, this short satirical piece is available online free as a combined script-and-video experience. SO WHAT: In addition to reading the play, you will see various Chicago artists act out portions of the script on video, recorded remotely. The event includes puppets, burlesque, original music, fire dancing and more in a brief, darkly comedic confection. With the Red Coronavirus running rampant across the countryside and a vaccine still months away, what's a Prince to do? Lock himself in a secure bunker in an undisclosed location along with a cohort of his top donors, of course. To prevent him and his rich supporters from becoming bored, the Prince has also brought a few artists into the bunker to entertain the crowd. But as the hour grows later and the night grows weirder, it's clear that something else has also invaded the party. NOW WHAT: Settle down for an evening of magical weirdness. Click here and begin reading and watching the videos.
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Julian Ramirez