Things to do in Chicago this Columbus Day

For many of us, Columbus Day means a day off from school to celebrate the "discovery" of America. Whether you head into downtown Chicago for the annual parade, take it as an opportunity to visit our world-class museums or get outside to enjoy the changing colors, we have something for everyone to discover this Columbus Day.


Columbus Day Parade

The Columbus Day parade celebrates Christopher Columbus' historic voyage to America and Italian-American culture.


Columbus Day Play

Come out to play on a day off school. Tickets available online.


Discover Something New

Youth groups, scouts and families can spend part of Columbus Day figuring out how bodies work and how to keep them safe and strong. Groups wishing to attend an RCC program or host an RCC educator at their location must make a reservation in advance.


80 at 80

Special exhibit showcases 80 rarely displayed artifacts from the museum's extensive collection in honor of the museum's 80th anniversary. These artifacts, carefully selected by MSI curators, will ignite guests' memories from past exhibits but many will be revealed for the first time.


UniverSoul Circus

One-of-a-kind show features a cast of performers hand-selected from around the world. The cross-cultural spectacle incorporates pop and hip-hop music for a modern take on the traditional circus act. Performances include Caribbean dancers; Irina Markova's comedy dogs; contortionists; and teeterboard acrobatics. Visit for information.


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