Summer in Chicago is officially here, however this year is different from previous years. The usual hum of energy surrounding upcoming events has disappeared as annual Chicago events have been cancelled due to COVID-19. While we understand these cancellations are for the benefit of public health and safety, we must admit many of us are disappointed. Our plans to eat turkey legs at the Taste of Chicago, vegan ice cream at the Chicago Vegan Food festival, and dance at the various summer music festivals are over.
Here’s a list of popular Chicago events that have been cancelled or postponed:
- West Fest Chicago – Cancelled
- Lollapalooza: July 30–Aug. 2 – Cancelled
- Chicago Pride Fest – Postponed, potentially for Labor Day Weekend
- Grant Park Music Festival – Cancelled
- Chicago Underground Film Festival: June 10–14 — Postponed until Sept. 9-13
- Ravinia Festival: June 12-Sept. 16 — Cancelled, Ravinia cancels entire 2020 season
- Ribfest Chicago June 12–14 — Cancelled
- Spring Awakening: June 12-14 — Cancelled
- Made in Chicago Market: June 13 — Cancelled
- Old Town Art Fair: June 13–14 — Cancelled, moved online
- Wells Street Art Festival: June 13–14 — Postponed until Aug. 29-30
- Andersonville Midsommarfest: June 13–14 — Postponed until Aug. 21-23
As Illinois moves from Phase 3, what can we expect during Phase 4?
As of today, Chicago is in Phase 3 of reopening: Residents may attend social gatherings of 10 people or fewer but must continue to wear face masks in public. Health and City officials are gearing up to allow the city to move into Phase 4 in less than a week. Phase 4 means: Bars and restaurants may reopen for in-person service in this phase, following “IDPH-approved safety guidance,” which includes capacity limits and personal protective equipment for employees. Schools and child care centers are open and gatherings of 50 people or fewer are allowed.
“Following the guidance of City and State officials regarding large gatherings, the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) canceled all permitted special events through Labor Day (September 7, 2020). Regrettably, this includes many of Chicago’s annual summertime traditions – including Chicago SummerDance in Grant Park. In lieu of summer festivals, DCASE will present at-home dance parties, drive-in movies, virtual concerts and community meals for frontline workers.”
Fun isn’t cancelled! Check out these virtual activities to participate from home:
2020 Virtual Gold Coast Art Festival: This vibrant festival has gone virtual! Let the color splash begin, the Gold Coast art festival starts on June 27th – Saturday July 3rd! With live conversations with the artists, customers can ask them what inspires their work. These Q&A’s start everyday from noon-4pm. All these local artists are ready to share their masterpieces with the world! Experience this energy packed festival from the safety of your home!
SummerDance in Place: Can you feel that beat? Chicago is filled with so many beautiful cultures and one language we can all express ourselves through is DANCE! The awesome SummerDance festival has been renamed, It will have a brand new look from the comfort of your home. A new citywide, at-home version of Chicago SummerDance invites residents to plan socially-distant dance parties of up to 10 people — in their homes and backyards, and on porches, balconies and sidewalks — connected via a live broadcast and social media platforms. Programs will include a 30-minute dance lesson followed by 60 minutes of music. Dance genres include Salsa, Swing, and Line Dancing. More details to be announced soon.
Millennium Park at Home: In lieu of the popular Millennium Park Summer Film Series, DCASE (Chicago Film Office) and the Chicago Park District are planning six drive-in movie nights across the city. The events will have a limited capacity of 50 cars, all pre-registered — and the City will encourage at-home viewing of the selected movies. Details will be announced soon. Additional online music, arts and recreation programming is also available through “Millennium Park at Home.”
Virtual Yoga from GPC: In need of some physical stress release? Try Virtual Yoga at Garfield Park! These one hour sessions with renowned Yogi Natalie Schiller will lift your spirits and body with the beautiful conservatory as the background! Beginners to advanced yoga lovers are encouraged to join. Learn how to register for this event here. This class is free but we welcome donations to help offset programming costs.
Chicago Museum Field Trips Online: Chicago is home to awe-inspiring museums, iconic architecture, and world-famous sites — and you can explore them all from the comfort of your home. These digital resources allow you to experience Chicago in a new way, from virtual tours to digitized art collections. Choose Chicago shares a list of of fun field trips you can take:
- Art museums
- History museums
- Science museums
- Zoos & animals
- Parks & outdoors
- Theatre & music