As is customary, Chicago unofficially kicks-off the summer season over the Memorial Day Weekend which just so happens to be this weekend. If you’re ready for Summer of 2023, then come celebrate with us as the city pulls out all the stops!
Begin the Memorial Day Weekend at the Wreath Laying Ceremony and Parade this Saturday honoring the fallen heroes and the Gold Star family members who have lost a loved one while serving in the U.S. armed services. The wreath laying takes place at 11:00 a.m. at Daley Plaza (50 W. Washington St.) while the parade kicks-off at 12:00 p.m. on State Street from Lake to Van Buren Streets in The Loop. Plus, this year’s Grand Marshal is Major General Rodney Boyd, Assistant Adjutant General who hails from the South Side of Chicago and is the highest-ranking African American Officer in the Illinois National Guard’s 300-year history. Come join the crowds lining the street waving flags and paying their respects as part of this Chicago tradition!
It’s back and ready to kick-off the unofficial start to Chicago’s summer festival season. The 38th annual Belmont-Sheffield Music Fest takes place in the heart of the Lakeview neighborhood on Sheffield Avenue from Belmont Avenue to Roscoe Street on Saturday and Sunday (11 a.m.-10 p.m.). Attendees can expect to have a blast at this festival which features top Midwest tribute bands on the main stage (near Roscoe), and an eclectic “community” entertainment stage (near Belmont) filled with fun neighborhood music acts, DJs, and other performers. Plus, you’ll find plenty of great eats, libations (beer and wine), and artisans to browse while you hang out on the street to welcome in summer!
Not only is the Randolph Street Market celebrating its 20th anniversary but it’s also their season opener Garden Party this Saturday and Sunday (10 a.m.-5 p.m.) at the Chicago Journeymen Plumbers Union Hall (1341 W. Randolph St.) in the West Loop. Browse wares from over 200 vendors offering the best vintage decorative arts, fashion, and furnishings along with global goods and designer creations. New this year, the market is shining a spotlight on its home décor offerings with one-of-a-kind finds and programing for interior designers. Plus, the market also features beer and wine gardens, spirits, local restaurant food vendors, and music. It’s one of the best summer kick-off parties in Chicago!
It’s time for the Pilsen neighborhood’s annual Mole de Mayo Festival this Saturday (12 p.m.-10 p.m.) and Sunday (12 p.m.-9 p.m.) on 18th Street from Ashland to Blue Island Avenues. Honoring the traditional Mexican sauce with a mole cook-off get ready to visit over 20 popular festival food vendors who will be vying for the 2023 People’s Choice and Best Mole winner title. This festival also features two main music stages offering a variety of music styles; an open-air mercado bustling with local merchants, crafters, and artisans; and lucha libra wrestling matches featuring high-flying aerial maneuvers and colorful masks!
One of the best aerial displays you’ll find in Chicago during the summer is the Navy Pier Fireworks which kick-off this Saturday (10 p.m.) and continue on Wednesdays (9 p.m.) and Saturdays (10 p.m.) through the Labor Day Weekend. Stunning views are available from across the pier’s public spaces to take in this dazzling free display complete with dramatic and popular music soundtracks. Plus, the show can also be viewed from nearby beaches or while cruising along the Lakefront Trail!
Bring on Summer 2023!
Sue Moss and Dean’s Team Chicago