Chicago Tourism Events

Chicago Tourism Events
Chicago is the largest island city in the US and the geography includes parkland, lake fronts and urban landscapes. The Windy City is also home to nearly three million residents representing a range of cultures and nationalities. These two facts allow the city to offer thousands of diverse tourist events each year. Some events require minimal admission fees, but many are free.

Polar Adventure Days

The Northerly Island, adjacent to the city, is home to the Polar Adventure Days each year. One weekend during the months of December, January and February, snow activities are featured on Northerly Island. Tourists may view sled teams pulled by huskies, ice sculpture and participate in winter sports such as snowshoeing. Winter craft exhibits are also offered as part of the event. Admission is free.

Northerly Island
1400 S. Lynn White Drive
Chicago, IL 60605


Dance enthusiasts have unlimited opportunities to strut their stuff at the eleven-week SummerDance event held year in July and August. Chicago's Grant Park hosts the dancers and musicians each late afternoon and into the evening hours. Free dance lessons are provided and admission to the event is free for all ages.

Grant Park, Spirit of Music Garden
601 S. Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605

Chicago Artists Month

Each October artists present work as part of the city's celebration of the visual arts. Art is shown throughout the city, as well open studio offerings, workshop presentations and neighborhood art walks. An overall theme is taken each year and a small group of local artists are selected to be featured at the event. A major exhibit is located each year at the Chicago Cultural Center. Admission is free to many of the venues.

Chicago Cultural Center
78 E. Washington
Chicago, IL 60602

Midwest Independent Film Festival

The Midwest Independent Film Festival event is held throughout the year, beginning each February and continuing through the month of November. Films are shown on the first Tuesday of each month and feature only Midwestern filmmakers. Nominal admission fees include a panel discussion, film showing, pre-show cocktail reception and a post-show party.

Landmark's Century Centre Cinema
2828 N. Clark
Chicago, IL 60657

International Film Festival

The Chicago International Children's Film Festival (CICFF) makes claims to be the "largest annual festival of films for children in the world." The 2009 event featured more than 200 films and videos representing more than 40 countries. The event is an Academy Award qualifying event, so guest have the opportunity to preview films that may be in contention for an Oscar award. Films are shown at various locations around the city. Listings are posted each year on the society's web page (listed below under "Resources").

Article Written By Lee Grayson

Lee Grayson has worked as a freelance writer since 2000. Her articles have appeared in publications for Oxford and Harvard University presses and research publishers, including Facts On File and ABC-CLIO. Grayson holds certificates from the University of California campuses at Irvine and San Diego.

Keep Me Informed

Weekly newsletters, announcements and offers from to your inbox.

Sign me up!

We HATE spam and promise to keep your email addresses safe and secure.