7 Best Chicago Summer Street Festivals for Families

5/17/2016 8:18:04 AM
7 Best Chicago Summer Street Festivals for Families - KidTrail Pick
Taste of Lincoln Avenue Chicago
Chicago summers are filled with so many activities and events.  Every weekend is filled with street festivals, kids events, concerts, events at Millennium Park and much more.  There are enough fun and exciting events and activities to make you forget all about Chicago winters! Many of the street festivals are a great option for families as they cater to the little kids in tow.  The following 7 Chicago summer street festivals are our top picks for families.  Not only are these festivals geared for adults but each have a separate kid’s zone filled with activities and entertainment.  Enjoy and have a fabulous Chicago summer!

Taste of Lincoln Avenue Chicago

What: The Taste of Lincoln Avenue celebrated its BIG 30th in 2013! This event sprawls over six city blocks on a major artery in the heart of Lincoln Park! Once home to Chicagos original club scene, today the neighborhood is home to many of the citys acclaimed theaters and music venues as well as top restaurants. The event features more than 150 vendors and more than 30 music acts on 3 stages. Every music genre is represented: from Funk and country to rock and folk.

Another up-and-coming Taste of Lincoln Avenue highlight is the Lill Street Craft Fair, a juried art event featuring unique DIY and handmade art.

Kid Friendliness: The Kids’ Carnival at the Taste of Lincoln Avenue is a block-long fest within the street festival that provides fun for families with children toddler age to elementary age.  From noon to six on Saturday and Sunday, kids can enjoy a range of activities that include inflatable slides or jumpy houses, face painting, games (and prizes!) and much more.  There is also a stage full of live kid-friendly entertainment where a variety of acts – from singers, to magicians, to puppeteers – perform all afternoon long.

The Kids’ area is on the 800 block of West Altgeld, between Halsted and Lincoln Avenue.  It is best to enter where the cul-de-sac on Altgeld meets the sidewalk on Halsted. 

Date/Time: Saturday and Sunday on August 6 and 7, 2016 from Noon to 10 PM. Kids Carnival is Saturday and Sunday from Noon to 6 PM.

Cost: Admission to the Kids area is free from Halsted Street only, if you decide to go through the other entrances, a donation will be requested.

For more information:


Wicker Park Fest

What: Wicker Park Fest is the “can’t miss music event” of the summer! In addition to the highly regarded live music bill, Wicker Park Fest is a showcase of its diverse neighborhood. Come for a  day of music, great food, kids fest and summer fun!

Kid Friendliness: Wicker Park Fest is one of the summer’s top kid’s fests within a fest. Wicker Park Fest Kids offers a wide variety of children’s programming from noon to 6 pm both days. Activities include face painting, chess wizards, bungee run, kids table- food creation, bounce house, One Strange Bird-craft activity, hair streaking, nail painting, Children's Learning Place-Toddler Activity Center, henna tattoos, cookie decorating, deep fried pickle- musical instrument making, Mad Science- Science Experiments and Fitzgerald Martial Arts.

Date/Time: Saturday and Sunday, July 23 – 24 from Noon to 10 PM. Kids’ activities are Saturday and Sunday from Noon to 6 PM.

For more information:


Do Division Street Fest

What: Kicking off the street fest season is the annual Do-Division Street Fest & Sidewalk Sale. This signature Chicago street fest pits great shopping, live music and family entertainment together under the summer sun. Spanning a lengthy 10-city blocks, this year’s bash features the Family Fun Fest, a Do-Fashion section, a multi-block sidewalk sale, and great food, crafts and artisans – highlighted by some of the best live music of fest season (band lineups TBA).

Kid Friendliness: Do Division Family Fun Fest is the exclusive family and kid-friendly area of Do Division Street Fest. This is the 8th year Friends of Pritzker and LaSalle II PTO are organizing the fest-within-a-fest. Family Fun Fest occupies two jam-packed blocks on Hoyne Avenue between Division and Crystal and on Crystal between Hoyne and Damen.

Some of the many popular activities featured at the Family Fun Fest in the past have included: Building Blocks Toy stores' train rides, The Easel Art Studio Craft Tent, face painting, balloon animals, punk rock hair do's, the Children's Learning Place Toddler Zone, inflatable obstacle courses, goodie bags, photo ops, face painting, mini golf and pony rides. Plus, everyone is encouraged to boogie on down at the Family Fun Fest entertainment stage.

Date/Time: June 3 – 5, 2016. Do Division Family Fun Fest hours are Saturday and Sunday, June 4th & 5th
from 12 - 6pm.

For more information:


Square Roots

What: Not your typical summer festival - more than 50 acts will appear on four stages (2 indoor and 2 outdoor). Square Roots will feature the best local and regional craft breweries while serving up food from a variety of Lincoln Square restaurants.

Kid Friendliness: Family fun at Square Roots include a Kids Art Tent. Celebrate Wiggleworms' birthday in the Kids Art Tent. Make a birthday hat or a birthday cake. An instrument petting zoo! Pickles Playroom will be broadcasting live on WLUV. Play some games at their booth and you might get interviewed on air! Stop by the Kid Snips booth to give your hair some pizazz. A swing set drum kit! Even the fanciest playgrounds don’t have a Swing Set Drum Kit. Swing on this sonic sculpture for a one-of-a-kind experience. Other activities include Milarts face painting booth, games, art and fun from other local Chicago companies.

Date/Time: July 8 – 10, 2016. Friday, July 8th, 5:00 – 10:00 PM. Saturday, July 9th, 12:00 – 11:00 PM. Sunday, July 10th, 12:00 – 9:00 PM

Cost: Suggested donation: $10 Adults; $5 Seniors over 65 and Children under 12.

For more information:


Sheffield Garden Walk

What: Sheffield Garden Walk features self-guided tours of more than 80 Gardens, guided Architectural Tours, live entertainment by some of Chicago's and North America's finest bands, food and drink, and activities for children at the Kids' Corner.

Kid Friendliness: Kids have their own corner where they can do more than walk. They can go on rides, pet various animals at the petting zoo, and ride a pony. In addition to all of these fun activities, kids can express their creative sides at the activity center. Families will be able to purchase food from Friends of Mayer, and there will be a sitting area to take a break and eat.

Date/Time: Saturday and Sunday July 23 and 24. Kids corner is Saturday and Sunday from Noon to 7 PM.

Cost: Admission to Kids' Corner is free. Attractions are fee-based (fee varies per attraction). Festival suggested donation: $7; $10 after 3:00 p.m.

For more information:


Wrigleyville Summerfest

What: Play ball! It’s time to play the field for the 14th annual Wrigleyville Summerfest! The neighborhood that’s home-base to the Chicago Cubs will host this homerun event, featuring only the most sought after bands, food and fun from August 6-7.

Kid Friendliness: Wrigleyville SummerFest's Kids' Zone features a wide range of interactive activities for children ages toddler to twelve. Have your face painted and enjoy the moon bounce, giant slide, mini golf, and a variety of fun crafts and games! Activities include Giant 26' Slide, Bungee Run, 4-in-1 Bounce Castle, Mini Golf, Games, Arts & Crafts, and Face Painting.

Date/Time: Saturday and Sunday, August 6 and 7, 2016. Saturday 12 -10pm and Sunday 11am-9 pm.

Cost: $5 suggested donation

For more information:


Southport Art & Music Fest

What: Southport Corridor blooms to life this summer when Southport Art Festival takes over Waveland and Southport on July 16 & 17, 2016. Featured in TimeOut Chicago as one of the “Best Festivals in Town,” the event will feature an assorted mix of fine art by day and bumpin’ music at night, setting the environment for a picture-perfect Chicago neighborhood street festival.

Kid Friendliness: Families will have the opportunity to bring their children, and enjoy all that Southport Art Festival has to offer. A special Kid’s area has been designed with interactive games and activities that will make for an unforgettable time. 

Date/Time: Saturday and Sunday, July 16 and 17, 2016. Saturday: 10am-10pm (Art ends at 5pm), Sunday: 10am-9pm (Art ends at 5pm). 

For more information:


Photo Credit: Taste of Lincoln Avenue

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