The Five Best Things to Do in Chicago This Month

The Race To Mackinac, Lang Lang, and more musts on the July culture calendar.

Chicago SummerDance

Photo: Courtesy of City of Chicago
 

CHICAGO SUMMERDANCE

You can bhangra from Bollywood to Balbo with dance lessons from Karsh Kale Collectiv and the Kalapriya Center for Indian Performing Arts in this Indian-themed installment of the weekly outdoor party.

DETAILS:

7/5–9/15 Get a quick one-hour dance lesson in swing, waltz, tango, and other styles (depending on the week), then show off what you’ve learned. Thu–Sat 6–9:30, Sun 4–7. Spirit of Music Garden, Grant Park, 601 S Michigan. Details, schedule: chicagosummerdance.org.

 

  NEXT: LANG LANG »
 
Lang Lang

Photo: Peter Honnemann
 

LANG LANG

When the prodigious pianist debuted at Ravinia 14 years ago, he was a young star on the rise. Now his headbanging take on Beethoven has made him an international treasure.

DETAILS:

7/27 See #25 in “40 Musicians Everyone Will Be Talking About This Summer.”

 

  NEXT: RACE TO MACKINAC »
 
Race to Mackinac

Photo: Michele Almeida
 

RACE TO MACKINAC

More than 300 ships are expected to set sail in the oldest freshwater race in the world. The event clocks in at over 20 hours, but the Michigan island’s famous fudge serves as a delicious reward.

DETAILS:

7/13 Spectators will not be able to actually watch the start of the race, because it begins three miles offshore, but competitors will be showing off their stunning boats in a parade at Navy Pier. Themed festivities will also take place. 10–2. Free. Navy Pier, 600 E Grand. cycracetomackinac.com.

 

  NEXT: SLOWGIRL »
 
Rae Gray

Photo: Zoe McKenzie Photography
 

SLOWGIRL

Up-and-coming local actress Rae Gray does some heavy lifting in Greg Pierce’s family drama about an uncle and niece avoiding their troubled pasts in this Steppenwolf production.

DETAILS:

7/18–8/25 William Petersen stars as a reclusive expat secluded in a Costa Rican jungle whose isolation is upended by the arrival of his niece, a young woman trying to escape the consequences of a lethal high-school prank. Up-and-comer Rae Wilson also stars. $40–$78. Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N Halsted. steppenwolf.org.

 

  NEXT: WICKER PARK FEST »
 
Ted Leo and the Pharmacists

Photo: Dave Martin/AP
 

WICKER PARK FEST

Plenty of heavily inked hipsters will tote their tots to Chicago’s family-friendly music fest headlined by rock groups Cults and Ted Leo and the Pharmacists.

DETAILS:

7/27–28 One of the city’s best-known festivals secures its Pitchfork-reader sensibility with headliners Ted Leo and the Pharmacists and dream pop duo Cults. A visual arts showcase (12:30–8) will take place for a second straight year. 12–10. $5 donation. Milwaukee from North to Paulina. wickerparkfest.com.

 

For more things to do in Chicago this month, click here.

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