Best festivals for your family this August

Chicago Air & Water Show


Kids of all ages love a good festival. Whether it’s the games for preschoolers or the great tunes teens can pretend they’re not tapping their foot to, summer fests are great to bring families together. Sprinkled in the city and suburbs, these are some of our favorite fests in August for families with kids of all ages.




Jeff Fest


When: Aug. 2-4


Where: 4900 Milwaukee Ave.


The Northwest Side’s cozy Jefferson Park neighborhood throws its annual community party with food, music, arts/crafts and activities for kids.


Chicago Bears Meijer Family Fest


When: Aug. 3


Where: Soldier Field, 1410 S. Museum Campus Drive


Families can enjoy interactive games, alumni autographs, giveaways, live music and more.


Edgewater EdgeFest


When: Aug. 3-4


Where: Broadway Avenue between Thorndale and Ardmore


Features 70 food vendors, beer and sangria, live entertainment on two stages, a kids tent and activities, a dunk tank and a pet parade.


Windy City Rubber Ducky Derby


When: Aug. 8


Where: Wabash Ave. Bridge


Spectators cheer on more than 50,000 yellow rubber ducks during the annual Windy City Rubber Ducky Derby to benefit Special Olympics Illinois. Family entertainment includes face painting, games, free food and appearances by several sports mascots. Donated prizes will be provided to the adoptive parents of the winning ducks. Festival takes place in front of the Wrigley Building, ducks dropped at the Wabash Ave. Bridge.


Chicago Hot Dog Fest


When: Aug. 9


Where: Lincoln Park


This year’s festival, held in Lincoln Park at 1701 N. Stockton Drive, features live music and family-friendly activities, city historians, plus classic Chicago-style Vienna Beef hot dogs.


Retro on Roscoe


When: Aug. 9-11


Where: Roscoe and Damen


Festival features local restaurants, artisans, vendors, chili cookoff and a family area with crafts, balloon artists, face painting, music, rides and more.


Annual Ginza Holiday


When: Aug. 9-11


Where: Midwest Buddhist Temple, 435 W. Menomonee St.


Experience a taste of Japan at this cultural festival, which features Japanese cultural exhibits and demonstrations, classical dances, drumming, ukelele, martial arts and fencing. Skilled master craftsmen (Waza) demonstrate crafts which will be offered for sale. Traditional Japanese cuisine will be offered and other Japanese merchandise.


Thirsty Ears Classical Music Street Festival


When: Aug. 10-11


Where: Wilson Ave. from Hermitage Ave. to Ravenswood Ave.


Chicago’s only classical music street festival includes family entertainment like spirited storytime sessions complete with improvised, live music by The Lucky Trikes and The WTTW Big Ideas Van. There is also a 2-hour presentation of modern silent films accompanied by freshly-composed scores performed live.


Glenwood Avenue Arts Festival


When: Aug. 16-18


Where: 6900-7000 N. Glenwood Ave. (Morse and Glenwood)


Includes a street art fair, indoor art displays, and live entertainment on three outdoor stages featuring 48 acts. KidFest Area features free hands-on arts activities.

Chicago Air and Water Show


When: Aug. 17-18


Where: North Ave. Beach


One of Chicago’s longest-running events, the show includes a wide variety of civilian acts with daredevil pilots performing their aerial stunts in the skies above Lake Michigan. The show can be viewed along the lakefront from Fullerton to Oak Street, with North Avenue Beach as the focal point.


Pilsen Fest


When: Aug. 17-18


Where: Blue Island Ave. from 18th Street to 21st Street


Exposes locals to the deep pool of cultural talent that exists in Pilsen and the Chicago area with its blend of live music, food, art, children’s activities, and handcrafted goods-aimed at highlighting the neighborhood’s Latino heritage.


Taste of Greektown


When: Aug. 23-25


Where: Halsted Street between Van Buren and Monroe streets


Food, music and entertainment, including Greek bands, artisans and games for both kids and families.


Chicago Baby Show


When: Aug. 24-25


Where: Navy Pier, 600 E. Grand Ave.


A family-friendly jamboree of top brands, great speakers and seminars, big giveaways, and lots of learning, support, bonding and fun.


Taste of Polonia


When: Aug. 30-Sept. 2


Where: Copernicus Center, 5216 W. Lawrence Ave.


Features four stages of music with more than 30 performances including classic rock, pop, polka, classical, Latin and more, Polish cuisine, arts and crafts, carnival, and a Kids World featuring activities and entertainment. There will also be beer and a casino.


North/Northwest Suburbs

Chicago Botanic Garden Kite Festival


Northbrook Days Festival


When: July 31-Aug. 4


Where: Shermer Road & Walters Avenue, Northbrook


Features a wide variety of food vendors, carnival rides and games, and entertainment. Live entertainment is featured each night at the main stage and during the day at the beer garden, food, and children’s stages. All proceeds from the festival go to scholarship and grants via the Northbrook Civic Foundation.


Festa Italiana (Rockford)


When: Aug. 2-4


Where: Boylan High School Grounds, 4000 St. Francis Dr., Rockford


Enjoy three days of authentic music, carnival, kids’ activities and Italian food.


The Fest For Beatles Fans


When: Aug. 9-11


Where: Hyatt Regency O’Hare, Bryn Mawr Avenue, Rosemont


Features dozens of special guests and tons of events and activities to celebrate of the 50th anniversary of Revolver. Includes activities for kids, such as Beatles puppet shows, Beatles parade, and arts and crafts.


Chicago Botanic Garden’s Kite Festival


When: Aug. 10-11


Where: Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe


In the meadow west of Evening Island, enjoy soaring stunt-kite performances set to music by members of the Chicago Fire Kite Team and members of the Kite Society of Wisconsin Illinois. These high-flying professionals demonstrate awesome feats of beauty and great skill. Ice cream, beverages and many lunch options will be available for purchase on the west meadow.


Lincolnshire Art Festival


When: Aug. 10-11


Where: Village Green, Milwaukee Ave. and Old Half Day Rd., Lincolnshire


This festival features more than 100 juried artists, live music and fun art activities for kids. Learn from interactive art demonstrations and booth chats. Stroller friendly.


Chicago World’s Fair of Money


When: Aug. 13-17


Where: Donald E. Stephens Convention Center, 5555 N. River Road, Rosemont


Children and adults can see more than $100 million of historic rare coins and colorful currency including a $1 million penny, a famous 1913 Liberty Head nickel valued at $3 million and $100,000 denomination bills. There will be free educational seminars, a children’s treasure trivia game, and youngsters can take photos of their face on a $100,000 bill.


Evanston Art & Big Fork Festival


When: Aug. 16-18


Where: 800 Church Street, Evanston


Features local fare, beer and wine, live music and original high-end work from 130 artists. Kid-friendly activities, artist demonstrations, and booth chats will help kids learn more about the artists and their work. See website for musical schedule.


Vintage Days


When: Aug. 17-18


Where: Old McHenry and Robert Parker Coffin roads, Long Grove


Includes street food, live music, an old fashioned ice cream social, a penny carnival, hayrides, craft drinks and more.


Western Suburbs

Arts Dans La Rue


Festa Italiana


When: Aug. 2-4


Where: Naper Settlement, 523 S. Webster St., Naperville


Features authentic Italian activities, delectable Italian cuisine, cooking demos and live entertainment. Plus, meatball- and cannoli-eating contests, trolley tours, big band music and more.


La Grange Endless Summerfest


When: Aug. 2-4


Where: Gordon Park, Ogden Avenue & Tilden Avenue, La Grange


Celebrate summer at its best with family fun, live music  and great entertainment for all ages. Includes rides, entertainment, food vendors, beer garden, music, and Sunday night fireworks.


Warrenville Summer Daze


When: Aug. 2-3


Where: Warrenville City Hall Complex, 28W701 Stafford Place, Warrenville


Food booths, live music, face painting and fun and games for the younger kids.


Destination Asia Festival


When: Aug. 3-4


Where: The Morton Arboretum, 4100 Illinois Route 53, Lisle


Explore diverse cultures through music, including Japanese drumming, dance, food, and a bonsai show. The festival will also include performances by champion sumo wrestlers.


Elgin Art & Soul on the Fox


When: Aug. 3-4


Where: Riverside Promenade, S. Riverside Drive, Elgin


The fine arts fair features a variety of art mediums, talented artists, regional entertainment, food trucks, oddball alley and a Kid Zone.


Arts Dans La Rue


When: Aug. 6


Where: Marion Street, between Lake and North Blvd., Oak Park


Savor art, food, wine, music, dance and all things authentically European. Enjoy kids’ activities, local art, crepes, beignets, macarons & more.


Veggie Fest


When: Aug. 10-11


Where: Danada South Park, Navistar Circle, Lisle


Fest features health booths, vegetarian food demos, talks by health professionals, drawings, live music, food to purchase, and kids’ activities.


Alley Art Festival


When: Aug. 31


Where: Water Street Mall, 24 E. Downer Place, Aurora


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


South Suburbs

Homewood’s Giant Block Party


Prairie Fest


When: Aug. 9


Where: Annunciation Byzantine Catholic Church, 14610 S. Will Cook Road, Homer Glen


Family Day at Annunciation Prairie Fest will include family-friendly music entertainment,  inflatables, kids’ activities, face painting, balloon art, reptile show, vendors, food, bakery and prairie and church tours.


Farm & Barn Fest


When: Aug. 10


Where: Yunker Farm, 10824 W. LaPorte Road, Mokena


Features sheep-shearing demos, petting zoo, horse rides, farm antiques, raffles, stage entertainment, kids games and activities, face painting and food vendors, bingo and chili cook-off. Plus, blacksmithing demonstrations, baby and kid contest, flea market and a 4 p.m. country concert.


Homewood’s Giant Block Party


When: Aug. 17


Where: Hickory Road, between Dixie and Martin, Homewood


Enjoy summer fun at Homewood’s Block Party.  Bring the family out for fun activities, live entertainment, tasty summer fare, and the annual Pooch Parade.


Hummingbird Festival & Nature Celebration


When: Aug. 17


Where: Plum Creek Nature Center, 27064 S. Dutton Road, Beecher


This celebration of nature puts the spotlight on hummingbirds and other pollinators. Enjoy presentations, bird viewing and local artisans and craft vendors. Watch on large screens as the Thorn Creek Audubon Society captures and bands hummingbirds. Celebrate nature with free activities including guided tree climbing, bike rentals and slacklining. Enjoy live music and many other family friendly activities.


Frankfort Fall Festival


When: Aug. 31-Sept. 2


Where: Oak and Kansas Streets, Frankfort


Featuring artisans, live entertainment, carnival and a parade at 1 p.m. on Sept. 2. Check website for detailed schedule.



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