Vacation is here. And for some it’s the scariest time in the year. Kids are home for eleven weeks. How do we occupy them for 77 days without emptying our bank account in the process!
The generous folk of our northern suburbs have come up with a cornucopia of choices.
- June 26-28: Northlake Days
5 p.m. to midnight Friday; noon to midnight Saturday; noon to 9 p.m. Sunday. Tel: 708-343-8700.
Includes a car show, carnival, bingo, fireworks, a beer garden, food selections, vendor booths and crafts.
- June 27-28: The Art Center’s Festival of Fine Arts
Sheridan Road and Park Avenue, Highland Park; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Exhibitions by more than 100 juried artists working in ceramics, fiber, glass, jewelry, wood and more. Additional attractions include family activities, art lessons, workshops and live entertainment demos.
- July 11-12: Buffalo Grove Art Festival
Corner of Lake Cook Road and Route 83 (McHenry Road) in Buffalo Grove; 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tel: 847-926-4300.
Rated one of the top 50 art festivals in the country, you’ll be able to watch more than 100 international juried artists working all weekend. Also: live musical acts; food and art activities for kids; an art scavenger hunt; and spin art.
- July 18-19: Evanston Ethnic Arts Festival
Dawes Park, Sheridan Road at Church Street, Evanston; Noon-7 p.m. Free
This 30th annual celebration of world cultures includes live music, dance performances, ethnic foods and exhibitions of more than 100 international artists and artisans.
- June 25-28: SJC Fest
John of the Cross Parish, 5005 Wolf Road, Western Springs
5-10:30 p.m. Thursday; 5-11:30 p.m. Friday; 1-11:30 p.m. Saturday; noon-7:30 p.m. Sunday
Fun includes carnival, live bands, food vendors, cash raffle, beer tent, face painting, prize bingo, and live bands.
- June 26-28: Long Grove’s Strawberry Festival
Locations throughout Long Grove, near Routes 83 and Old Route 53
10 a.m. -10 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday. Tel: 847-634-0888.
Town eateries offer strawberry-inspired treats, live music, and family activities including pony rides, face painting, kiddie rides and more.
- July 2-4: Eyes to the Skies Festival
Lisle Community Park, Short Street and Illinois 53, Lisle
3-11 p.m. Thursday; noon-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. $8 for adults and children over 6; free for under 6.
Hot air balloon launches. Rides in tethered hot air balloons.
- July 31-Aug. 2: La Grange Endless Summerfest
4-10:30 p.m. Friday; noon-10:30 p.m. Saturday; noon-10:30 p.m. Sunday
A weekend of live entertainment, carnival rides, petting zoo, fireworks (Sunday) and more.
For the Rest of Us
- June 26-Sept. 6: Downtown Downers Grove Summer Nights Classic Car Show
Along Main from Maple to Franklin. Fridays, 6-9 p.m. June 5-Sept. 6.
A Friday night classic car show also features live entertainment (7-9 p.m.) and a trophy awarded to the “best” featured car each week.
- June 24-Aug. 26: Highwood Evening Market
Everts Park, 130 Highwood Ave., Highwood. 4-9 p.m. Wednesdays through Aug. 26. Free
Not your regular farmers’ market. Enjoy dinner and cocktails, while exploring the vendors and listening to live music.
- July 10-12: Irish American Heritage Festival
Irish Heritage Center, 4626 N. Knox Ave., Chicago
6 p.m.-1 a.m. July 10; noon-1 a.m. July 11; 11 a.m.-11 p.m. July 12
$15-$20 for adults; $5 for kids under age 12; free for kids under 4
See more than 100 performers for 3 days on 5 stages. Also: Irish and American food and drink shopping, step dancers, cultural exhibits and children’s activities. Dozens of vendors and artisans will be selling Irish clothing, music and jewelry.
- July 17-19: Big Greek Food Fest of Niles
Haralambos Greek Orthodox Church, 7373 Caldwell Ave., Niles
5 p.m.-midnight Friday; 3 p.m.-midnight Saturday and Sunday
Admission: $2 (free before 5 p.m.); $1 seniors; free for children under 12.
Taste authentic Greek food and pastries, roasted lamb, and loukoumathes. Fest includes children’s activities, live music, a Greek taverna, festival dancers, and cooking classes.
(Excerpted from Chicago Tribune: Calendar: Summer festival guide to the suburbs)
Guide by Leah Zitter, dbfchicago.com Writer