It’s the last weekend in March and there’s so much to do! The pandemic numbers are staying relatively low and it’s feeling a little more normal to go out since Chicago dropped the masking and vaccination proof mandates on February 28 (for better or worse).
While we’re hopefully at the tail end of things, many venues are keeping their mask and vaccination requirements for the foreseeable future. So if you do plan to go out this weekend, make sure you check out the venue’s policies and take initiative. Wear a mask, social distance, and get your vaccination shots and your booster even if the venue/event doesn’t require it. And if you still feel that wearing a mask is a must (like many still do), then please wear one. Protect yourself and those around you. If you still don’t feel entirely safe to go out (and quite honestly, who can blame you?) you can always stay in and support these places from home.
Now, let’s get on with your Chicago Curated Weekend!
- Support Local Venues
- Kingston Mines is open with some great lineups this weekend
- Fitzgerald’s Patio is also back in full swing with tons of artists playing throughout the week with artists like Clem Snide on Thursday and EG Vines on Saturday!
- Evanston Space‘s shop is open and you should consider donating to help the venue during these weird times. They are also having lower capacity shows at the venue!
- Head over to the Hideout’s regular shop and get yourself some great merch! Their 2020 Holiday Sale page is also still up with links to great local artists!
- Metro shop is full of fantastic concert posters from yesteryear and cool merch
- Lincoln Hall/Schubas always has great items in their shop waiting for you! Plus Schubas/Tied House is open and events are on their way back!
- Same goes for Thalia Hall’s merch store (those holiday socks? *chef’s kiss*)
- Let’s not forget Empty Bottle’s fantastic merch shop! Plus they just added some new stuff designed by some awesome people that is sure to catch your eye! Shows are going on now as well, so head over to their venue site and go to some concerts if you’re comfortable
- Art Galleries and Special Events
- All Star Press is constantly putting up new prints for you to decorate your space with! Naturally Beautiful is up on the walls ready for you to see in person! Check out some of their prints from last year’s Vertical Gallery collab, which you can purchase here!! There is also a virtual gallery featuring all the works! And don’t forget to check out the virtual edition of JC Rivera’s new exhibition “Still Undefeated” !
- Galerie F has a fun stock of prints from concert posters, pop culture prints and more! Plus they have a Black Friday Sale going on!
- Rotufugi will be showing a new exhibit Is This Real Life? New Works by David K Rose ! So if you feel comfortable mask up and see the work in person.
- Immersive Van Gogh does exactly what its name says: immerses you into Van Gogh paintings via huge projections that bring the already lively art to life!
- Immersive Frida is another immersive art experience that will take you on a trip to the beautiful world of Frida Kahlo
- WNDR Museum
- Garfield Park Conservatory is open! Book a reservation to see all the beautiful gardens safely!
- Lincoln Park Conservatory is open! Book a reservation to see all the beautiful gardens safely!
- Chicago Botanic Garden is open! Book a reservation to see all the beautifully lit up gardens safely!
- “The Office Experience Chicago” is open for all you die hard fans of the show!
THURSDAY – SATURDAY, MARCH 24th – 26th
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.
- March 24 – Herb Alpert Birthday Bash
- March 25 – VINO & VINYL: Closing Night MUSE & MOVEMENT
- March 26 – UNITY NIGHT! Fundraising party for Fulton Street Collective – $60
- March 29 – Saxofonix Quartet with Event Horizon Quartet
- March 30 – Heisenberg Uncertainty Players perform We Tear Down Our Coliseums
- March 31 – Marques Carroll Quintet Live
- April 1 –In Translation: A Synesthetic Art Show from Jess Brooks
- April 5 – Gregory Artry Trio Live
NOW WHAT: The shows are free, but there is usually a $15 suggested donation to help support the musicians and Fulton Street Collective. ! Also you should definitely support Fulton Street Collective by becoming a member!
THURSDAY & FRIDAY, MARCH 17th & 18th
WHAT: A mix of community radio and public access TV for the pandemic/internet age!
SO WHAT: Channel 66 is a continuation of “Vans’ commitment to support artists and creatives while also uplifting communities during such an unprecedented time.” Streaming live from around North America (The General in Brooklyn, NY, House of Vans Chicago, Mexico City, and Vans DTLA), Channel 66 offers up some interesting and culturally diverse programming. With DJ sets, curated radio shows, talks, workshops, and more, Channel 66 is the perfect place for entertaining programming.
NOW WHAT: You can check out the rest of their schedule over on their website! Just head on over and enjoy the wonderful shows!
FRIDAY, MARCH 25th
New Talks and Video Archives @ Various Locations & Chicago Humanities Festival YouTube channel, your favorite browser or YouTube app, any time you want some inspiration, All Ages
WHAT: Interesting conversations with interesting people!
SO WHAT: Chicago Humanities Festival always bring some of the best ideas to the surface with entertaining programming that captures your imagination. Be on the lookout for the upcoming season as their website is constantly updated with new talks. They just announced their first talk of the new year! Click the link below for more details!
- 3/25 Terence Blanchard on Lyric Opera of Chicago’s Fire Shut Up in My Bones @ First United Methodist Church at the Chicago Temple
- 4/13 An Evening with Molly Shannon and Tim Meadows @ Harris Theater for Music and Dance
- 4/13 Love That Story: Jonathan Van Ness in Conversation @ Harris Theater for Music and Dance
- 5/1 Bus Tour of Chicago’s Southwest Side with Shermann “Dilla” Thomas @ DuSable Museum
- 5/7 Believing Women: Anita Hill in Conversation @UIC Dorin Forum
101WKQX Pop Up Performance with Beach Bunny @ Beat Kitchen, 2100 W Belmont Ave., Doors 7:00pm, 18+
WHAT: A free show for this fantastic local band
SO WHAT: Beach Bunny, led by the immensely talented Lili Trifilio, is one of our favorite bands thanks to their bright pop sound. It’s seriously hard not to be completely enamored with songs that are endlessly catchy and down right fun! Check out their latest single “Oxygen” and delve into their past EPs and amazing debut album Honeymoon, you won’t regret it!
NOW WHAT: Thanks to Byline Bank, this 101WKQX Pop Up show is free! It’s first come first served (18+ Show), but the first 50 people who are 21+ get a free drink and a pre-party! And remember, Beat Kitchen will continue to require proof of full vaccination against Covid-19 OR proof of a negative test taken no less than 72 hours of the show.
FRIDAY & SUNDAY, MARCH 25th & 27th
Jurassic Park in Concert @ Chicago Symphony Orchestra, 220 S. Michigan Ave., Friday 7:30pm, Saturday 3:00pm, All Ages
WHAT: A wonderful film score played live!
SO WHAT: It’s difficult to think of a more iconic film score composer than John Williams. His music has made thrilling movie sequences all the more enthralling. This weekend the Chicago Symphony Orchestra will be performing one of Williams most well known scores: Jurassic Park! Relive the magic and wonder the score imbues live and in person! There will also be a free pre-concert conversation featuring Richard Kaufman in Orchestra Hall 75 minutes before the performance.
NOW WHAT: Tickets are available now! Go hear this amazing score performed live by an equally amazing orchestra!
FRIDAY – SUNDAY, MARCH 25th – 27th
ChiTown Movies @ Pilsen Neighborhood, 2343 S. Throop St, Various Times, All Ages
WHAT: An old school experience for the modern age
SO WHAT: Take a trip back in time and head out to a drive-in movie with ChiTown Movies. Ever since the pandemic started and shut down traditional movie screening, a few pop up drive-ins have arrived and ChiTown Movies has persevered, offering up modern movies in this retro setting. Check out their lineup below for showings this weekend and in the future!
- 3/25 Shang-Chi and the Legend of Ten Rings – 7:30pm
- 3/25 Friday the 13th – 10:30pm
- 3/26 Shang-Chi and the Legend of Ten Rings – 7:30pm
- 3/27 Encanto – 7:00pm
- 4/1 Grease – 8:00pm
- 4/1 Halloween (2018) -11:00pm
- 4/9 Encanto – 8:00pm
- 4/9 Nightmare on Elm St. (The Original!) 10:30p,
- 4/10 Grease – 8:00pm
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $33 per car for these movies, so bring the family for a safe movie watching experience
SATURDAY, MARCH 26th
Anna Meredith / Holland Andrews @ Empty Bottle, 1035 N Western Ave, 8:30pm, 21+
WHAT: A wonderful evening of electronic compositions
SO WHAT: Immerse yourself into the sound of Anna Meredith‘s deft soundscapes. Meredith’s range is far and wide having been composer-in-residence with the BBS Scottish Symphony Orchestra, creating the stellar score for Bo Burnham’s Eighth Grade, and releasing her own solo work of experimental electronic music. Joining her at Empty Bottle will be the equally impressive and sonically ethereal Holland Andrews!
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $15!
SATURDAY & SUNDAY, MARCH 26th & 27th
The West Loop Festival of Spirits & Wine @ Plumbers Hall, 1340 W. Washington Blvd, Saturday 11:00am – 6:00pm, Sunday 11:00am – 5:00pm, 21+
WHAT: A huge variety of wines and spirits under one roof!
SO WHAT: Ever feel lost going down the liquor aisles, unsure of what to get. Well The West Loop Festival of Spirits & Wine will help you out by giving you the chance to try out a variety of different wines and spirits alongside tasty treats. Experts will be giving informational demos showing you the best practices of pairing beverages and foods. You’ll also get to enjoy the Big Dog Mercer Blues Band as you discover your new favorite wine or spirit.
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $45 for the Starter package, $55 for the Premiere, and $75 for the VIP. Head over to their website for more details! 100% of the Spirits and Wine Tasting
and sales net proceeds benefits Voice of Care
The Neo-Futurists’ The Infinite Wrench @ The Neo-Futurist Theater, 5153 N Ashland, Saturday 10:30pm, Sunday 7:00pm, 16+
WHAT: Quick plays live and online!
SO WHAT: The Neo-Futurists are back! Their Infinite Wrench is an ongoing, ever-changing attempt to perform 30 plays in 60 minutes for a live audience. Now it’s actually a live audience that will be enjoying the performance in person! With plenty of COVID precautions in place, you’ll be able to enjoy the funny, disgusting, profound, terrifying, irreverent, and downright entertaining show with friends! Plan ahead as vaccination cards will be checked and booster will be required to be fully vaccinated.
NOW WHAT: Join the Neo-Futurists this weekend for $10! Head over to their website to see all they have planned now that in-person audiences are a thing again! If you’re still a little anxious about going out, The Infinite Wrench Goes Viral will be continuing til February (and possibly beyond) over at their Patreon!
THE WHOLE SELF-DISTANCING WEEKEND & BEYOND
Weekend Shows @ Lincoln Hall & Schubas, 2424 N Lincoln Ave & 3159 N Southport Ave, various times, 18+
WHAT: A full weekend of amazing shows at Schubas!
SO WHAT: Lincoln Hall and Schubas are some of our favorite venues in the city and they always have something great going on. Check out what’s going this weekend at these great venues!
- March 24 – Schubas Open Mic Hosted by Adrienne Stout and Aaron Klinger @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – Doors 7:30pm – FREE – 21+
- March 24 –
Del Water Gap / Taylor Janzen @ Lincoln Hall, 2424 N Lincoln Ave – Doors 7:30pm – $20 – 18+SOLD OUT
- March 24 –Karina Rykman @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – Doors 7:30pm – $15 – 18+
- March 25 – joan / The Wldlfe @ Lincoln Hall, 2424 N Lincoln Ave – Doors 7:00pm – $20 – 18+
- March 25 – Pell / Renzell / Jay Wood / DJ Ca$h Era @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – 8:00pm – $20 – 18+
- March 26 – Lewberger @ Lincoln Hall, 2424 N Lincoln Ave – Doors 8:00pm – $25/$65– 18+
- March 26 – underscores[The Gone Fishin’ Minitour] / Folie / TYGKO / LAN Party @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – Doors 6:30pm – $20 – 18+
- March 27 – Luna Luna / Dent May / Pearl & The Oysters @ Lincoln Hall, 2424 N Lincoln Ave – Doors 6:00pm – $15 – All Ages
- March 27 – Juicebox Collective Showcase featuring…Iris Temple, Loona Dae, Sarob, Soh Darling, DJ Ubabu @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – Doors 5:30pm – $15 – 18+
NOW WHAT: Head out to Schubas & Lincoln Hall and enjoy this great lineup of shows! Please note: proof of vaccination is required for entry to all shows at Lincoln Hall and Schubas in Chicago. Click here for more information on this policy.
Back on the Big Screen and Virtual Cinema @ Music Box Theatre, 3733 N Southport Ave and 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 theater experience this weekend with X, The Worst Person in the World, Writing with Fire, Mask Part of: Cher!, 2022 Oscar Nominated Animated Shorts, 2022 Oscar Nominated Live Action Shorts, Midnight screening of Lucifer’s Satanic Daughter, A Fine Wine & Cheese Night at the Awards and more! But if you want to watch some first-run movies at home, you can still watch great movies and support them online! They are currently screening films via their The Music Box Direct series! There are also tons of select titles available on their new platform!
NOW WHAT: Digital tickets are $12, in person screenings vary, so sit back and enjoy! Remember that a physical/digital vaccination card or negative PCR COVID test is required for entrance!
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!!
Concerts Livestreams 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 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!
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.