September 6 & 7
River North Design District Gallery Walk & Open House
Get inspired as you stroll to 31 showrooms exhibiting vignettes from Chicago’s top designers, from Amy Kartheiser Design (shown above) to JamesThomas Interiors. Within each space: artwork created by notable artists. This year’s walk philanthropic partner is buildOn, and a portion of proceeds from special events help its mission of changing lives of children in a developing country.
Time: Opening night, Fri., 5-9 p.m.; Open House, Sat., 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Place: Locations across River North.
Cost: Most events are free; info at rivernorthdesigndistrict.com
Join this colorful celebration of Frida Kahlo, held in anticipation of the “Frida Kahlo 2020” exhibit coming to new Cleve Carney Museum of Art next summer. Dress in Kahlo-inspired attire and get lost in music and dance performances (don’t miss Ballet Folklorico Quetzalcoatl at 3 p.m.), cooking demos, salsa lessons, traditional Mexican food, and more.
Time: Noon-8 p.m.
Place: The McAninch Arts Center, 425 Farwell, Glen Ellyn
Cost: Free; info at atthemac.org
World Music Festival
Some 50 artists and ensembles from more than 20 countries transport you to places near and far. From Pan-Latin to South African to Haitian, there are new sounds to discover. Especially inspiring is Ragamala, a celebration of Indian classical music (Sept. 13 & 14 at Chicago Cultural Center).
Time: Performance times vary
Place: Venues throughout the city
Cost: Admission is free; info at chicago.gov
West Lake Market
From skin care products to handmade jewelry to fresh bouquets to furniture, the local merch at this lively bazaar will inspire gift giving — especially to yourself. Bring the kids; there are family activities including entertainment and arts and crafts.
Time: 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Place: The Lakewood, 1758 W. Lake
Cost: Admission is free; info at westlakemarket.org
Raise a class of vino, cava, prosecco, champ … the list goes on. Now in its eighth year, this tasting tour is hosted by one of Food & Wine magazine’s 2019 Sommeliers of the Year, Erik Segelbaum. Be sure to hit the Somm Sit Down Series, featuring games, contests, and educational seminars.
Time: Session 1, 2:30-5 p.m.; session 2, 7:30-10 p.m.
Place: Revel Fulton Market, 1215 W. Fulton Market
Cost: $65; VIP admission with extra perks is $95; tickets at wineriot.com
Celebrate inclusion at this alfresco concert featuring an inspiring lineup of local performers, with and without disabilities. There will be dancing, comedy, and music, including special guest Avett Ray, the 7-year-old YouTube piano phenomenon who is blind.
Time: 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
Place: Navy Pier South Dock, 600 E. Grand
Cost: Free; info at chicagolighthouse.org
Eco-minded shoppers, unite: This is a brand-new artisan market with sustainability in mind — and luxury at its heart. Created by Parissa Morris, cofounder of Chicago-based vegan skin care line Town & Anchor (shown below), this shopping experience combines fashion, decor, and beauty in one gorgeous, green location.
Time: 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Place: Exchange312, 1714 W. Division
Cost: Free; info at bidemarket.com
The Gray x Daisie Foundation Leading Ladies Dinner
Time: 5:30-7:30 p.m.
Place: Boleo, 122 W. Monroe
Cost: Free; RSFP at daisiefoundation.org
The International Exposition of Contemporary and Modern Art — Chicago’s annual contemporary and modern art fair — swells with more than 135 leading international fine art exhibitors representing 24 countries and 68 cities. In tandem: citywide satellite events and exhibitions that take place during EXPO ART WEEK (Sept. 16-22). EXPO kicks off with Vernissage, the opening-night benefit and preview hosted by the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago’s Women’s Board.
Time: Vernissage, Thurs., 5-9 p.m.; EXPO hours, Fri.-Sat., 11 a.m.-7 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
Place: Navy Pier Festival Hall, 600 E. Grand
Cost: Vernissage tickets starting at $125; EXPO tickets starting at $25/day; expochicago.com
September 19-January 5
Chicago Architecture Biennial
The anticipated event is back, again addressing the most compelling issues in contemporary architectural practice. Designed to expand the conversation on architecture and built environment with field leaders and everyday citizens, it’s theme is “…and other such stories,” addressing the realities of urbanism and the spaces around us.
Time: Exhibit and event times vary
Place: Venues across the city
Cost: Free; info at chicagoarchitecturebiennial.org
Taste of Lettuce River North
At this special event, chefs from Big Bowl, Shaw’s, and Beatrix join the culinary team at Wildfire to create a one-night-only four-course menu showcasing the best of all four restaurants. Tickets include cocktail and wine pairings with each course. The full menu can be found online here.
Time: 6:30 p.m.
Place: Wildfire Chicago, 159 W. Erie
Cost: $75; reserve by calling 312-787-9000
EXPO Chicago photo by Thomas Struth/Marian Goodman Gallery