Watch Free Outdoor Family Flicks at Chicagoland’s Movies in the Park Events

Grab some snacks and enjoy these fun family flicks at a park in the city and suburbs.

While we take in those amazing summer nights, why not enjoy the great weather with a concert or a movie outdoors? The Chicago area offers many free and inexpensive outdoor movie programs and we made it easier for you by rounding up kid-friendly movies to see all summer long.

Whether you want to watch new animated movies or classics, there are plenty of movies for the whole family to enjoy. A quick head’s up — we did select a few PG-13 movies for parents with tweens and teens, so please take a look at each movie’s rating to decide if it’s appropriate for your kiddos.

Keep scrolling to find the best outdoor movies near you. Don’t forget to grab a few blankets and delicious snacks before heading down to these screenings!

Note: Free screenings can change at the last minute, so ALWAYS check the location first before heading out. Looking for more kid-friendly activities? Check out our summer fun family guide!

This story was updated on June 6, 2024 by Chicago Parent’s Audience Development Manager, Katina Beniaris. Her research included fact checking the 2024 dates for outdoor movie series. Questions? Email her at katina@chicagoparent.com. 

Movies in the Parks Events in Chicago

Gallagher Way Movies
Photo credit: Gallagher Way

Movie Night at Gallagher Way

June 12, 26; July 10, 17, 31; Aug. 14, 28; Sept. 11, 2024

The popular Gallagher Way series returns with a mix of new, family-friendly releases and classics. In June, see Wonka (PG) and Barbie (PG-13). In July, watch School of Rock (PG-13), Angels in the Outfield (PG) and Soul (PG). In August, watch Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (PG) and Star Wars: A New Hope (PG). In September, they will screen Twilight (PG-13). 

Chicago Park District: Movies in the Parks

June 11-Sept. 13, 2024 (various dates)

  • Address: Chicago Park locations — check our our map!

All movie screenings begin at dusk. We created a list breaking down by North Side, South Side and West Side to help find an outdoor movie near you. 

Millennium Park Summer Film Series

July 16-Aug. 20, 2024 (Tuesdays) 

Families can head to Millennium Park for a summer film series. In July, the series kicks off with a double feature with E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (PG) and Jurassic Park (PG-13). For the rest of the month, watch Coco (PG) and Barbie (PG-13) In August, watch American Fiction (R), Wonka (PG) and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (PG-13). Millennium Park Summer Film Series is presented by Pluto TV with the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events.

Movies in the Parks Events in North/Northwest Suburbs

Movie in the Park at Frontier Park

Aug. 16, 2024

Enjoy watching the movie, The Super Mario Bros. Movie (PG) with your family at Frontier Park. Bring your own chairs, blankets and movie snacks.

Movies Under the Stars at Willow Stream Park

June 21; July 21, 26, 2024

Bring blankets, chairs and snacks for an outdoor movie screening this summer at Willow Stream Park. Concessions will be available for purchase. See Elemental (PG) on June 21, Trolls Band Together (PG) on July 12 and The Super Mario Bros. Movie (PG) on July 26. Rescheduled dates are available if it rains.  

Starlight Movie Series in Evanston

June 1, 8, 15, 22, 28, 29; July 13, 19, 27; Aug. 6, 17

  • Address: Various Evanston parks (check website)

Outdoor movies begin at various times at parks across Evanston. Food trucks will be available at some events. In June, watch Wish (PG), The Goonies (PG), Elemental (PG), Turning Red (PG), The Little Mermaid (2023) (PG) and Barbie (PG-13). In July, watch Space Jam: A New Legacy (PG), Luca (PG) and The Color Purple (PG-13). In August, watch PAW Patrol: The Mighty Movie (PG) and Wonka (PG). 

Movies in the Park in Lincolnwood

Aug. 31; Sept. 14, 2024

The free movie series will be held at Proesel Park Pavilion. On Aug. 31, watch Elemental (PG) and on Sept. 14, The Little Mermaid (PG).  

Movies in the Parks Events in South Suburbs

Movie Nights on Village Commons Lawn

June 5-Aug. 14, 2024 (Wednesdays)

Families can enjoy a free movie night at Village Commons on the lawn. Food and non-alcoholic drinks will be available for purchase. In June, watch PAW Patrol: The Mighty Movie (PG), Wish (PG), The Super Mario Bros. Movie (PG), Migration (PG). In July, watch Elemental (PG), Trolls Band Together (PG), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem (PG) and Kung Fu Panda 4 (PG) and The Wizard of Oz (G). In August, watch Cars (G) and Wonka (PG).

Thursday in the Park Concert & Movie Series in Tinley Park

June 20; July 11, July 25, 2024

Head to The Head Shell to enjoy a Thursday movie of live music and movies this summer. On June 20, watch Trolls Band Together (PG). In July, watch Top Gun: Maverick (PG-13) and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem (PG). 

Outdoor Movie Series in Orland Park

June 16; July 22; Aug. 12, 2024

Movies will be shown at Orland Park’s new Centennial Park West location. Bring blanks and lawn chairs, movies begin at dusk. Watch The Super Mario Bros. Movie (PG) on June 6, Elf (PG) on July 22 and Minions: The Rise of Gru (PG) on Aug. 12. 

Movies in the Parks Events in Western Suburbs

Movies in the Park in Oak Park

May 17; June 14; July 19; Aug. 16; Sept. 13, 2024

Grab a blanket and snacks to watch movies at Scoville Park. Watch The Little Mermaid (2023) (PG) on May 17, The Marvels (PG) on June 14, Wonka (PG) on July 19, Barbie (PG-13) on Aug. 16 and Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire (PG-13) on Sept. 13. 

A Night at The Movies in Naperville

July 26; Aug. 9, 23; Sept. 6, 20, 2024

Families are welcomed to enjoy a night in the parks with their free outdoor movie series. In July, watch Minions: The Rise of Gru (PG). In August, watch Spy Kids (PG) and Elemental (PG). In September, watch Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (PG-13) and Monsters, Inc. (G). 

Movies in the Park in Elmhurst

June 17; July 12; Aug. 2, 2024

Grab a picnic blanket and join the fun at Wilder Park. Food trucks will also be available. Watch The Lorax (PG) on June 17, Monsters, Inc. (G) on July 12 and Bolt (PG) on Aug. 2. 

Movies on The Lawn at Oakbrook Center

June 12-Aug. 28, 2024 (Wednesdays)

Every Wednesday, Oakbrook Center will host a free outdoor movie series, with refreshments provided by The Table at Crate. In June, watch Migration (PG), Ghostbusters (PG) and The Super Mario Bros. Movie (PG). In July, watch Field of Dreams (PG), Hotels for Dogs (PG), High School Musical (G) and Trolls Band Together (PG). In August, watch Wish (PG), Wonka (PG), 13 Going on 30 (PG-13) and Boys in the Boat (PG-13).


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Katina Beniaris
Katina Beniaris
As audience development manager, Katina Beniaris digs into data to help the Chicago Parent team learn about our audiences and tailor better content for them. She has more than five years of experience in content creation.
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