Oz Park

Oz Park

The biggest news in alfresco is the opening of a new rooftop bar at the neighborhood’s newest hotel, the Hotel Lincoln (1816 N. Clark St.; 312-254-4700). Called The J. Parker (cocktails from $12), the watering hole and lounge seats up to 100 people. From this perch, you’ll be able to survey the area’s other great outdoor destinations, including the Green City Market (1730 N. Clark St.; 773-880-1266), right across the street; its annual Chef’s BBQ is on July 12 this year. Next to the market, the Lincoln Park Zoo (2200 N. Cannon Dr.; 312-742-2000) beckons, as do the expansive green lawns surrounding it. A bit further away, catch up on the past theatre season at Theater on the Lake (2400 N. Lake Shore Dr.; 312-742-7994), which every summer produces mini shows in a Chicago Park District building located at a bend in the lakefront running path. Don’t miss the remount of Hit the Wall, The Inconvenience’s breakthrough show, from July 25 to 29.

Inland, enjoy an alfresco movie on the semicircular patio behind the Chicago History Museum (1601 N. Clark St.; 312-642-4600): Ferris Bueller’s Day Off on July 31 and The Princess Bride on August 15. Grab sandwiches from Bourgeois Pig (738 W. Fullerton Ave., 773-883-5282; sandwiches from $7.65) or falafel and hummus at Nesh (734 W. Fullerton Pkwy., 773-975-6374; entrées from $5) and secure a bit of lawn for a movie in Oz Park (2021 N. Burling St.; 312-742-7898): The African Queen comes to port on July 7. Or ditch the whole dining on the grass thing and make a reservation for the sidewalk patio (which seats 28) at Chez Moi (2100 N. Halsted St., 773-871-2100; entrées from $22), a charming boîte from the chef who ran the Mag Mile’s Bistro 110 for 15 years.

During daylight hours, don’t miss the Sheffield Garden Walk on July 21 and 22 (sheffieldgardenwalk.com), a handy excuse for strolling about and gawking at the yards hidden behind multimillion-dollar homes. Cool off at Annette’s Italian Ice (2009 N. Bissell St., 773-868-9000; ices from $2.50) with frozen treats, available to go through the streetside window. Or do the same at Butcher & the Burger (1021 W. Armitage Ave., 773-697-3735; burgers from $7), which sells custard ($4.50). Nearby Webster Avenue offers portable noshing galore: Sal’s Deli (1013 W. Webster Ave., 773-935-6191; sandwiches from $7.19) for subs and sandwiches; Sweet Mandy B’s (1208 W. Webster Ave., 773-244-1174; items from $1.50) for cookies, cupcakes, and iced coffee drinks; and Bare Berry (1211 W. Webster Ave., 773-495-0088; items from $2.95) for fro-yo.

If you’d rather sit in the sun, choose John’s Place (1200 W. Webster Ave., 773-525-6670; entrées from $12), which has tables with and without umbrellas. Floriole Café & Bakery (1220 W. Webster Ave., 773-883-1313; items from $.50) makes layered gourmet sandwiches, using housemade croissants, and offers Wi-Fi at its sidewalk tables. The newly opened Derby Bar & Grill (1224 W. Webster Ave., 773-248-0900; entrées from $12) has a big patio where you can indulge in the horseracing theme with a mint julep and a Hot Brown, the cheese-sauce-smothered open-faced turkey sandwich that Louisville made famous.

Tim Klein