It’s going to be a topsy turvy weekend with warm temps dipping back down to the 60s and rainy days sandwiched between sunnier bright spots. but no matter the weather, there is something great going on in Chicago! And with the pandemic numbers staying relatively low (but rising a bit), 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
- 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! This week sees the opening of “Saturday Morning Fever” featuring the works of Griffin Goodman! Pus you can 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! They will also be showing Smalls to the Walls: A Group Exhibition of Petite Proportions!
- Rotufugi is the perfect nexus of art and toys! Head over to see what new pieces of art they have in stocks and on display in their gallery space!
- 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!
- Greek Heritage Parade is taking place this weekend on Sunday May 22 at Halsted St and Van Buren Sts! Go celebrate Greek culture and enjoy the festivites!
THURSDAY, MAY 19th
Fulton Street Collective Jazz Series @ Fulton Street Collective, Prairie Moon (635 Chicago Avenue, Evanston, IL), & Their YouTube channel, 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, which has a great back catalog for you to enjoy! Below are just some of the upcoming shows from the collective.
- May 19 – Emily Kuhn Quintet/Chase Elodia CD Release Livestream @ Fulton St Collective
- May 24 – Adam Larson Quartet Livestream at Fulton Street Collective
- May 25 – MOON JAZZ with ALEX BELTRAN ORGAN TRIO @ Prairie Moon (635 Chicago Avenue, Evanston, IL)
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 – SUNDAY, MAY 19th – MAY 22th
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!
- 5/19 Spider-Man: No Way Home
- 5/20 Uncharted
- 5/20 Scream 5 (2022)
- 5/21 Encanto
- 5/21 Us
- 5/22 Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
- 5/25 Mean Girls
- 5/26 The Batman
- 5/27 Uncharted
- 5/27 Friday the 13th
- 5/28 Encanto
- 5/28 Us
- 5/29 Spider-Man: No Way Home
- 5/30 The Batman
- 5/31 Encanto
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $33 per car for these movies, so bring the family for a safe movie watching experience
FRIDAY, MAY 20th
Sunflower Bean & Jackie Hayes @ Bottom Lounge, 1375 W. Lake St, 7:00pm, 17+
WHAT: Perfect tunes for your Friday night
SO WHAT: Sunflower Bean haven’t released an album since 2018, but the wait is over. They are on the precipice of releasing Headful of Sugar, and if their recently released singles are any indication, we’re in for a fun and bright rock album ready for summer. Head to this show and get a taste of the new album and some choice cuts of their past outings! Joining them will be Jackie Hayes!
NOW WHAT: Tickets are $18!
FRIDAY – SUNDAY, MAY 19th – 22nd
Chicago Mayfest @ Lincoln Park (Armitage & Sheffield), Friday 5:00pm – 10:00pm, Saturday and Sunday Noon – 10:00pm, All Ages
WHAT: Fun times in Lincoln Park!
SO WHAT: Chicago Mayfest offers a wide variety of entertainment for all ages. There will be plenty of live entertainment at two stages showcasing Chicago’s most acclaimed musicians. A kids area will be open with a pet parade, story-time with Disney characters, games, crafts, and more! There will also be delicious summertime food and all the libations needed to light up your weekend! Saturday and Sunday feature $5 Mimosas from noon to 3:00 pm and FREE Wine-Tastings that will happen throughout weekend.
NOW WHAT: A suggested donation of $10 will help support RANCH Triangle Community Conservation Association
SATURDAY, MAY 21st
The Anti-Cruelty Society’s 28th Annual BARK @ Soldier Field at The Stadium Green, 1410 Special Olympics Dr, 8:00am -1:00pm, All Ages
WHAT: A fun outdoor fundraiser for the whole family!
SO WHAT: The Anti-Cruelty Society’s 28th Annual BARK (formerly BARK in the Park and BARK from the Heart) brings together more than 1,200 dog lovers, canine companions, and people who want to help animals in need will raise $150,000 in support of The Anti-Cruelty Society’s mission. The 2.5 mile walk along Chicago’s beautiful lakefront will be followed be a puppy party with food & beverages, family activities, and dog-friendly demonstrations!
NOW WHAT: Registration is $40 or $50 day of. Day of Registration starts at 7:30am and the walk begins at 9:00am! Head over to the Anti-Cruelty Society’s website for full details!
SATURDAY & SUNDAY, MAY 21st & MAY 22nd
Northbrook Art in the Park @ Village Green Park, 1810 Walters Ave, Northbrook, 10:00am – 5:00pm, All ages
WHAT: Art in the Park returns to Northbrook’s Village Green Park
SO WHAT: Art in the Park will welcome 85 artists to Village Green Park to showcase their wonderful paintings, sculpture, jewelry, ceramics, and more. Beyond the amazing artists there will be live music from Cirrus Falcon in the park’s gazebo, festival food, and youth art activities making this a family-friendly event for all.
NOW WHAT: Admission is free! Attendees are invited to bring their gently used wall art to the festival where it will be donated to the Chicago Furniture Bank, a nonprofit that distributes furnishings and art to those leaving shelters and moving into permanent housing.
Renegade Craft Fair @ Andersonville, Clark St. between Foster Ave. + Edgewater Ave., 11:00pm – 6:00pm, all ages
WHAT: A craft fair focused on independent makers.
SO WHAT: Hundreds of independent crafters and makers will be at this Renegade Craft Fair celebrating DIY spirit for the first time in Andersonville! This great market/fair has been bringing some of the best vendors to Chicago for years and this one is sure to be great.. Head over to their event page for a full vendor list and more info.
NOW WHAT: The event is free and open to the public. The fair will be on Clark Street between Foster and Edgewater, giving you tons of space to shop and support DIY crafters.
Skokie Festival of Cultures @ Oakton Park, 4701 Oakton St, 11:00am – 6:00pm, All Ages
WHAT: Two days of beautiful cultures on display!
SO WHAT: Stop by Oakton Park in Skokie for a weekend celebrating cultures from around the world. The Festival of Cultures will feature a pair of stages showcasing music and dance performances from around the world. They will also have plenty of unique food and beverages, interactive cultural booths, merchandise vendors, and a children’s game and activity area! And let’s not forget the festival’s famous flag display! Check out the lineup of participating cultures at the website! A fuller schedule will be available at their website as well!
NOW WHAT: Just head out and enjoy this celebration of the diversity in Skokie!
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!
SATURDAY & BEYOND, MAY 21st & BEYOND
Chicago Japan Film Collective Film Festival @ Logan Theatre (2646 N Milwaukee Ave), Gene Siskel Film Center (164 N State St), & Their Website’s streaming platform, the comfiest movie watching spot in your home, various times
WHAT: The opportunity to discover some of the best contemporary Japanese indie cinema
SO WHAT: The Chicago Japanese Film Collective festival is back and this time with a mixed in-person and virtual fest! The festival has a strong focus on narrative, documentary, and animated work created by women, the LGBTQ community, and minority filmmakers. Through these films, they hope to connect Japanese and American cultures and create mutual understanding and respect. They will be showing 13 films for their second year and it looks like a great one as this year’s theme is “Love”
NOW WHAT: In-Theater Tickets are $12 and an All Access Pass is $25! Virtual Tickets are $10 for single films, $20 for 5 Virtual Tickets (5 Films)! Go watch some incredible films!
SUNDAY, MAY 22nd
Chicago Vinyl Connection 006: Southside @ Marz Community Brewing, 3630 S Iron St, Noon – 5:00pm
WHAT: A vinyl pop up at a great brewery
SO WHAT: Chicago Vinyl Connection is back for 2022 with a nice lineup of vendors selling some choice slabs of wax. Presented by Miyagi Records & South Rhodes Records and powered by The Underground Sessions, this vinyl market will feature amazing record dealers like A1 Records & CDs, Aadam Jacobs, Beverly Phono Mart, Groove Thang DJs, Jaytoo, Mississippi Records, Shady Rest Vintage & Vinyl, Sonorama Discos, Tony K Records, and Tropicalazo! While you look for a hidden gem or have a drink at the bar you can enjoy some DJ sets from Groove Thang DJs: DJ RS3, Alvin Ease, G Vinyl, and Nailz!
NOW WHAT: Entry is free!
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 brings some of the best ideas to the surface with entertaining programming that captures your imagination. Be on the lookout for updates to the upcoming season as their website is constantly updated with new talks. Check out the links below for the current lineup of talks on their schedule!
- 5/22 Bonnie “Prince” Billy: Performance & Conversation @ Thalia Hall
- 6/1 KAINA & Ben LaMar Gay: A Concert @ Navy Pier Lake Stage
- 6/2 Simu Liu on Superheroes, Stardom & Writing a Memoir @ Music Box Theatre Chicago
THE WHOLE SELF-DISTANCING WEEKEND & BEYOND
To Be, William Shakespeare’s 458th Birthday @ Chicago Shakespeare Theater on Navy Pier’s Website, the coziest spot in your home, All Ages
WHAT: Chicago Shakespeare Theater celebrates the Bard’s 458th birthday with a free 40-minute virtual program by local artists.
SO WHAT: Eleri Ward performs Acoustic Sondheim from her indie-folk album, A Perfect Little Death. Musical performances by Chicago Shakes performers Missy Aguilar, Jerica Exum, Jacquelyne Jones, Evan Tyrone Martin, Liam Oh, Sawyer Smith and more. One of Shakespeare’s most famous speeches will be performed by A.B.L.E. Ensemble, which creates theater and film projects for, with, and by individuals with Down syndrome and other intellectual and developmental disabilities.
NOW WHAT: Watch To Be here. Streaming on demand through May 22
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!
- May 19 – Schubas Open Mic Hosted by Adrienne Stout and Aaron Klinger @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – Doors 7:30pm – FREE – 21+
- May 19 – Tora / Softmax @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – Doors 8:30pm – $15 – 18+
- May 19 – Pain of Salvation / Klone @ Lincoln Hall, 2424 N Lincoln Ave – Doors 7:00pm – $30 – 18+
- May 20 – Harbour / America Part Two / Kesley Bou @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – Doors 7:30pm – $12 – 18+ SOLD OUT
- May 20 – Schubas Comedy Showcase Hosted by Adrienne Stout & Aaron Klinger @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – 7:30pm – $10 – 21+
- May 21 – Chicago Scavenger Book Launch Party @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – Doors 12:30pm – FREE – 18+
- May 21 – Wyatt Waddell / Rich Robbins @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – Doors 8:30pm – $13- 21+
- May 22 – Roy Kinsey / Demetruest / Lamon Manuel @ Schubas, 3159 N Southport Ave – Doors 6:30pm – $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 The Northman, Pleasure, Men, The Chicago Critics Film Festival (Final day Thursday), midnight screenings of Shrek, The Canadian Part of: Silent Cinema at the Music Box, The Gang’s All Here Part of: Anchors Aweigh Matinees!, 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!
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.