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Highland Park Fourth Fest

Highland Park, Ill.

Enjoy carnival rides, a petting zoo and pony rides, picnic games, live music and food at Highland Park's Fourth Fest.  Fireworks will be held at dusk at Wolter's Field.

When: 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
Cost: Admission is free, wristbands for unlimited rides and games are available an early bird rate of $15.00; price the day of the event will be higher

Alley Art Festival

Aurora, Ill.


Local artists converge on Water Street Mall in downtown Aurora and engage passerby with their art, craft, talent and more. Over 60 artists display their wares, food is available for purchase, and events include free yoga, a creative children’s booth and live music.

When: Check website for schedule.
Cost: Free

Life Time Kids Tri Chicago

Chicago, Ill.

The swim takes place in Lake Michigan at Chicago's Montrose Avenue Beach, including a shallow water start, parallel to the beach. The bike and run take place on closed park roadways and running paths all along Chicago's beautiful lakefront. Open to boys and girls 7-14.

When: First wave starts 8:30 a.m.
Cost: Check website

Jack Axe Games & Festival

St. Charles, Ill.

The Games include a 1.5 mile course where competitors encounter 15+ obstacles that is focused in on strength and endurance. All obstacles can be scaled to one's ability. Festival includes live music, bouncy house and scavenger hunt, beer and food tent, food vendors, small farmers market and Jack Axe Game Zone.


When: Check website for schedule. Aug. 29-30.
Cost: Check website for cost

The Glen Ellyn Backyard BBQ

Glen Ellyn, Ill.


More than 60 teams compete for trophies and bragging rights in three categories. Festivities include live music, a dunk tank, and activities for kids. All proceeds support Bridge Communities in their efforts to help transition homeless families in DuPage County to self-sufficiency by means of working with partners to provide mentoring, housing, and supportive services.

When: Aug. 29. Check website for schedule.
Cost: Free

Family Twilight Adventure

The Morton Arboretum | Lisle, Ill.

Hike, do activities and roast marshmallows before going on a silent tram ride through the woods after dark.

When: 7-9 p.m. Aug. 21, Sept. 25; 6-8 p.m. Sept. 19
Cost: $19, $16 members

Family Day/Open House

Big Run Wolf Ranch | Lockport, Ill.


Visit the animals, enjoy wildlife lectures and take a tour of the facility. Includes food, drinks, gift shop, music, and fun. See wolves, cougars, bears, coyotes, woodchucks, raccoons, skunks, porcupines and more. Special Guests at noon: Jim Nesci’s Cold-Blooded Creatures.

When: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Cost: $6

Picnic Supper, Barnyard Dance & Ice Cream Social

Wagner Farm & Heritage Center | Glenview, Ill.


Bring your blanket and a picnic supper to the farm for wagon rides, live music, square dancing, and an ice cream sundae topped with all the fixings.


When: 4-8 p.m.
Cost: Check website for cost

American Indian Veterans Celebration

Cantigny Park | Wheaton, Ill.

A full-day salute to native veterans. Music, art, dance, guest speakers and award presentations are part of this national gathering. For additional details visit

When: 11 a.m.

Power of the Crowd

Adler Planetarium | Chicago, Ill.

This wrap-up to the Summer of Science will include activities related to crowdsourcing—utilizing crowdsourcing to create a sky show, participate in a Community Design Lab activity that lets you do hands-on storyboarding, and much more.

Cost: Free with museum admission

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