Back to reality — the kids are back in school, cooler temps (and rain) are moving in, but we have a weekend that’s still in summer mode!  Check out all the festivals!!

Buckingham Fountain (500 S. Columbus Dr.) in the South Loop provides the ambience for U.S. Bank’s Windy City Wine Festival this Friday (5:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.) and Saturday (3:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.).  It’s a great opportunity to sample more than 300 wines from around the world, attend wine seminars and cooking demonstrations, and even have discussions with sommeliers and chefs!  Live entertainment will be performed as well!!

Indulge in some of the best donuts from Chicago’s most famous donut shops and bakeries at Donut Fest at the Zoo this Saturday (10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.) at Lincoln Park Zoo (2200 N. Cannon Dr.) in the Lincoln Park neighborhood.  Ticket includes admission to the event, limited capacity access to animal exhibits, interactive games, live entertainment, giveaways, and more!  So grab a donut, a mimosa, beer, wine, or coffee and take in views of the zoo’s amazing animals and gardens!!

Smoked meats and barrel-aged bourbon whiskeys take the spotlight at this year’s 2nd annual Chicago Bourbon & Barbecue Fest at Belmont and Damen Avenues in the Roscoe Village neighborhood on Saturday and Sunday (12:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.).  Besides the bourbon tastings and mouth-watering foods, there will be two music stages, artisans, and a kids’ activity area!  It’s where Southern hospitality meets Midwest outdoor fun!!

It’s time again to celebrate Mexico’s independence from Spain at Festival de La Villita at 4400 W. 26th Street and Kostner Avenue in the Little Village neighborhood.  Highlights of this fest include fantastic food from neighborhood eateries, nonstop music and dancing, carnival rides, and more!  In addition, the fest is the end location of the popular and colorful 26th Street Mexican Independence Day Parade taking place on Sunday!!

Nostalgia returns to the Gladstone Park neighborhood with the 3rd annual Throwback Music Fest held on the 6000-6100 blocks of North Milwaukee Avenue, just north of Peterson.  In addition to three days of music from the ‘50s through the ‘80s, there will be food, a kids’ area, a pet parade on Saturday, and a vintage car show and a Miss Throwback Pin-up Contest on Sunday!  Get ready to shimmy, bop, shake, and boogie!!

The season for your Movies in the Parks is quickly winding down.  Here are this weekend’s!

Friday, September 7th:
“Ferdinand” (8:00 p.m.) – Ronan Park (3000 W. Argyle St.) – North Side
“The King and the Mockingbird” (8:00 p.m.) – Winnemac Park (5100 N. Leavitt St.) – Lincoln Square

Saturday, September 8th:
“Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” (8:00 p.m.) – Senn Playlot Park (5887 N. Ridge Ave.) – Edgewater

Have a Great Weekend – Rain or Shine!!