Kickstart Chicago’s spring with some family fun. Spring in Chicago can be unpredictable but family fun doesn’t have to be. The city is known for its list of amazing activities and events and Spring is no different. There are plenty of FUNtastic Spring events in Chicago to prep you for a glorious Chicago summer! Take the kiddos for a fun and free kite flying adventure or watch the iconic Buckingham Fountain get turned on for summer or maybe participate at Bike the Ride on Lake Shore Drive! So many fun things to do! Take a look below and let us know what you think. Enjoy!
19th Chicago Kids and Kites Festival
Neighborhood: Lincoln Park
W. Montrose Drive (Lake Shore Drive, between Montrose Ave. & Wilson Ave.)
Chicago, IL 60640
What: A favorite family event and a harbinger of springtime in Chicago, the 19th Annual Chicago Kids and Kites Festival presented by COUNTRY Financial returns to Cricket Hill in Lincoln Park (Montrose and Wilson) on Saturday, May 6, from 10am to 4pm. Admission is FREE.
New this year, the Windjammers International Kite Team will thrill the crowd with their synchronized kite flying maneuvers, and once again, the City of Chicago will provide kite kits for children to build, decorate and fly, while supplies last. One of the highlights of the festival is the Big Kite Candy Drop – a piñata-like kite filled with candies that drop from the sky – will take place in the afternoon, weather permitting. Other activities include face painting, balloon artists and crafts. For any last minute changes including cancellation due to unsafe weather conditions, please call 3-1-1.
Date/Time: Saturday, May 6, 2017, 10am-4pm
Cost: Admission is FREE.
Switch on Buckingham Fountain at Grant Park
Buckingham Fountain at Grant Park
337 E. Randolph St.
Chicago, IL 60602
What: Join ComEd and the Chicago Park District to Switch On Summer in 2017 and celebrate the Buckingham Fountain's 90th birthday. Now in its third year, the annual event will feature more than a dozen of Chicagoland's most beloved organizations, including the Shedd Aquarium and Brookfield Zoo, to help the city spring into summer with the official season-changing signal - turning on of the Buckingham Fountain. The festivities will include free giveaways, family-friendly activities, and live entertainment from American English.
Date/Time: Saturday, May 6, 2017 from 4:00 PM - 7:00 PM. Fountain will be switched on at 6:00 p.m.
Pinstripes Brunch and Bowling on Mother’s Day
435 East Illinois Street
Chicago, IL 60611
What: Make this Mother’s Day special by treating mom to an expansive bottomless brunch fit for a queen! Indulge in favorites like made-to-order omelets, carved prime rib and fresh shrimp, bagels with spreads and smoked salmon, flatbreads, waffles ‘her-way’ topped with berries, bananas foster or Nutella, plus a chocolate fountain for dessert. Moms will be especially encouraged to sit back and relax with mimosas and bloody Mary’s as the kids are taken care of at the ‘Kids Corner’ station with pizzas, chicken fingers, Mac and cheese and more.
Date/Time: Sunday MAY 14, 2017 at 9:30 AM - 3:00 PM
Cost: Adults $34, includes one mimosa, Kids 6-12 $15, Kids 5 & Under: Free
Bike the Drive on Lake Shore Drive
What: Kick-Off the Summer with MB Bike the Drive. Once a year, people on two wheels own Lake Shore Drive during MB Bike the Drive! See a sunrise over Lake Michigan, hear the birds chirp and enjoy the views of Chicago’s skyline as you experience the best of the city by bike. Come celebrate 16 years of this iconic summertime starter!
The event benefits Active Transportation Alliance which is a non-profit, member-based advocacy organization that works to make bicycling, walking and public transit safe, convenient and fun.
Date/Time: Sunday May 28, 2017
Cost: Adult registration is $48. Kids 17 and under is $17. Includes event t-shirt.
Location: For your safety, all participants must start at one of the below locations.
Columbus Drive and Jackson Drive
Bryn Mawr Rest Stop
Museum of Science and Industry Rest Stop (57th Street)
For more information and to register:
Daily Cruises on Lake Michigan
What: Kickstart Spring with a beautiful and refreshing cruise on Lake Michigan. The sight of the city is just stunning from the lake and the exhilaration and thrill of being on the lake makes it a fun way to spend a Spring or Summer afternoon with whole family.
There are many cruises to choose from. Some offer brunch or dinner while others offer theme cruises such as an architectural cruise or history cruise. Take a look below and find one that fits well for your family!
Cruises are offered from Seadog Cruises, Shoreline Sightseeing, Odyssey, Spirit of Chicago, Mystic Blue, and Tall Ship Windy.
Check this link below for more information:
Spring Flower Show at Lincoln Park Conservatory
Lincoln Park Conservatory
Neighborhood: Lincoln Park
2391 N. Stockton Dr.
Chicago, IL 60614?
What: An exhibit of floral artistry will be on display for the Lincoln Park Conservatory 2017 Spring Show. This year’s Spring Show evokes the uplifting nature of a spring day in Chicago by featuring kites and sculptures by Chicago artist Michael F. Thompson. Plants in the show include azaleas, daffodils, tulips, hyacinths, hydrangea and many more.Tulips, Daffodils, Hydrangeas, Orchids, spring bulbs, flowering shrubs and cool season flowers will make a festive presence throughout the Show. Strategically placed frames will encourage visitors to picture themselves in the show.
Date/Time: Everyday till Sunday, May 11, 2017 from 9 AM to 5 PM. Drop by anytime.
Impulse; An Interactive Art Exhibit at Navy Pier
600 E. Grand Avenue
Chicago, IL 60611
What: Polk Bros Park at Navy Pier will be transformed into a space of play for all ages, as city dwellers become the musicians and artists collectively with the installation of Impulse.
Impulse is a publicly activated light and sound experience that uses repetitive units of subtle light and sound to create a temporal, ever changing event, allowing guests to create co positions with unique, urban instruments.
Fifteen seesaws ranging from 16-24 feet in length, will illuminate and produce audible tones when in motion, activating built in lights and speakers. Come out to play and enjoy these captivating works of art.
Date/Time: March 10-May 21, 2017 in Polk Bros Park at Navy Pier
3 Awesome Kids/Family Workshops at Lurie Garden Tour
The Lurie Garden is located at the southeastern end of Millennium Park
What: There is a lot more to the Lurie Garden than meets the eye! From rich symbolism and inventive architecture to diverse plants and engaging design, you’re sure to walk away with a better understanding of why this urban garden is so important.
The following are upcoming children’s programming at The Lurie Garden:
Family Workshop: All About Bees
You and your family will learn all about bees from a bee expert! Jana Kinsman of Chicago’s “Bike A Bee” will tell you the buzz on honey bees, beekeeping in the city, and native bees, too.
April 30, 2017 at 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Little Lurie Gardeners: Singing Explorers
The Little Lurie Gardeners program is a 6-week series that offers children and their parents and caregivers an interactive exploration of the natural world through live music and movement in our a one-of-a-kind urban oasis in Millennium Park, where art and nature meet. Come prepared to sing, dance, and smell the flowers in your very own garden in the city.You are expected to attend all six programs but you only need to register for the first week.
Six Mondays; May 1 to June 12, 2017 (no class May 29). Note: This is a series of six music and nature appreciation classes. By registering you are committing to attending all six. Toddler must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver.
Little Lurie Scientists: Spring
The Little Lurie Scientists program is a 6-week series that explores the science behind the beauty of Lurie Garden. Each week we will have a new topic and conduct mini experiments to inspire your child’s sicentific side!
Ages: 3 to 5 years old
Date/Time: Six Tuesdays, May 2 to June 6, 2017. 10:00 am – 10:45 am. Note: This is a series of six music and nature appreciation classes. By registering you are committing to attending all six. Child must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver.
Green City Farmers Market
Neighborhood: Lincoln Park
1800 N. Clark St.
What: Green City Market is a quintessential Lincoln Park farmers market! Green City Market provides a marketplace for purchasing sustainably grown food and connecting farmers and local producers directly to chefs and the greater Chicago community. In addition to produce, you will find bakery goods, jams, breads, cheese, pies and more!
This Lincoln Park outdoor market is loads of family fun! Grab a bike or walk to the market with the kiddos in tow. Find some fresh food to devour and kiddos can participate in Club Sprouts. At every market, kids can taste an in-season market item. Each taste test earns a stamp on their Club Sprouts membership card. Once the card is filled with 8 tastes, the child takes home a certificate of accomplishment and a special prize. The Club Sprouts table also offers fun, seasonal activities and lessons, from scavenger hunts, to hands-on recipes, so children can learn the benefits of eating fresh, healthy ingredients and supporting local farms.
Date/Time: The market is outdoors May through October in Lincoln Park on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 7 AM to 1 PM. Club Sprouts for kiddos are available at the Club Sprouts tent every Wednesday and Saturday from 8 AM to 12 PM.
Cost: Free to attend. Price varies by vendor to purchase produce, pastry and other items.
Location: Green City Market's Lincoln Park outdoor market is located at the south end of Lincoln Park between Clark and Stockton Drive (approximately 1817 N. Clark).
Fun at Maggie Daley Park
In addition to the beautiful playground, there is more fun to be had at Maggie Daly for both the kiddos and adults alike.
6 Tennis Courts
The six courts, located on the east side of the park, will open on March 27, 2017 after 3 PM, weather permitting. The tennis courts at Maggie Daley Park are available for walk-up use at no charge.
Court hours are Monday – Sunday, 7:00 am – 9:00 pm. Play on all courts will begin and end each hour on the hour.
For more information on the tennis courts:
City Mini Golf
Mini Golf at Maggie Daly Park opens on May 13, 2017 till Oct 2, 2017. Located on the south end of the BP Bridge, there is a portable 18-hole miniature golf course consisting of unique obstacles and challenging holes that offer family-friendly fun. Featuring several replicas of iconic Chicago structures, golfers can putt underneath a 6-foot tall Willis Tower, through the Wells Street bridge, and even putt up a Plinko-inspired replica of a Picasso sculpture.
Date/Time: Open daily from 10 AM to 9 PM
Cost: Pricing per 18 holes is $10.
For more information:
What: At the center of the Skating Ribbon sits two stunning rock-climbing structures that form Chicago’s first and only Climbing Park. These custom-designed sculptural rocks and boulders provide a unique outdoor recreational experience for beginners and experts alike, supported with instruction and supervision by park staff.
Season: Opening April 12 through October 2017
Cost: $15 per person
For more information on the climbing wall:
Bark in the Park 5K Walk
1410 Museum Campus Dr.
Chicago, IL 60605
What: Join The Anti-Cruelty Society as we celebrate our 23rd year of Bark in the Park on Sunday, May 21 at the Soldier Field Stadium Green. Whether you take part in our optional 5K walk along Chicago’s breathtaking lakefront, or simply enjoy a picnic with your furry friend, Bark in the Park has something for everyone. And please remember, all proceeds benefit The Anti-Cruelty Society and help us care for nearly 20,000 animals each year!
The optional 5K walk will provide participants with unparalleled views of the Chicago skyline. Take a relaxing stroll along the lakefront path with your canine companion and marvel at the beautiful city we all home. (Please note: walkers of all ages are welcome, and anyone can participate with or without their pet)
Date/Time: Sunday May 21, 2017
Cost: Register online to participate. Adult: $40, $45 day of event. Children 3-13: $20, $25 day of event. Children 3 and under are free. Dogs are always free. T-shirt included in registration.
Photo Credit: Chicago Park District