Events

14 Things You Absolutely Must Do in Chicago This September

Published On 08/31/2015 Published On 08/31/2015
Flickr/Focka

Date

Event

Location

Sep 2 Wed

Get weird at Cirque du Soleil Kurios - Cabinet of Curiosities Things get weird, like, really weird, at the latest theatrical freakout from Cirque. It’s the circus’ first Chicago show in four years and it ends this month, so stuff some magical mushrooms in your mouth (just kidding, under no circumstances do that, didn’t you see Knocked Up?) and head to United Center.

United Center

Get weird at Cirque du Soleil Kurios - Cabinet of Curiosities United Center Things get weird, like, really weird, at the latest theatrical freakout from Cirque. It’s the circus’ first Chicago show in four years and it ends this month, so stuff some magical mushrooms in your mouth (just kidding, under no circumstances do that, didn’t you see Knocked Up?) and head to United Center.

Date

Event

Location

Sep 3 Thu

Catch some premium bits at Jangle Heart Circus This on-the-rise comedy festival features a wide range of improv and sketch groups with local acts such as Bit Tank, ClickHole, The Neo-Futurists, Holy Fuck Comedy Hour, and Revolver doing their thing at venues around town including iO, The Annoyance Theatre, and CIC Theater.

Various locations

Catch some premium bits at Jangle Heart Circus Various locations This on-the-rise comedy festival features a wide range of improv and sketch groups with local acts such as Bit Tank, ClickHole, The Neo-Futurists, Holy Fuck Comedy Hour, and Revolver doing their thing at venues around town including iO, The Annoyance Theatre, and CIC Theater.

Flickr/Steven Ley

Date

Event

Location

Sep 3-13

See unorthodox sets at the Chicago Fringe Festival Five venues. 47 shows. 197 performances. Highlights include a homecoming dance at Fischman Liquors, shows in church gyms, and some of the finest (and weirdest) underground theater you’ll ever see.

Various locations

See unorthodox sets at the Chicago Fringe Festival Various locations Five venues. 47 shows. 197 performances. Highlights include a homecoming dance at Fischman Liquors, shows in church gyms, and some of the finest (and weirdest) underground theater you’ll ever see.

Flickr/swimfinfan

Date

Event

Location

Sep 4-6

Dance your ass off at North Coast Music Festival Chicago’s most diverse (and quite possibly its most fun) music fest is back with a lineup ranging from Widespread Panic to The Roots to The Chemical Brothers, with a ridiculous number of afterparties going down all weekend across the city.

Union Park

Dance your ass off at North Coast Music Festival Union Park Chicago’s most diverse (and quite possibly its most fun) music fest is back with a lineup ranging from Widespread Panic to The Roots to The Chemical Brothers, with a ridiculous number of afterparties going down all weekend across the city.

Flickr/Bing

Date

Event

Location

Sep 5 Sat

Bring antacids to Chicago’s Best Summer WingFest This outdoor spinoff of the popular indoor winter event features double the wing-slinging restos, live music, and games, featuring all-you-can-eat wings from 40 of Chicagoland’s finest chicken wing establishments, plus a text vote for best in show.

Bailey Auditorium parking lot

Bring antacids to Chicago’s Best Summer WingFest Bailey Auditorium parking lot This outdoor spinoff of the popular indoor winter event features double the wing-slinging restos, live music, and games, featuring all-you-can-eat wings from 40 of Chicagoland’s finest chicken wing establishments, plus a text vote for best in show.

Date

Event

Location

Sep 5 Sat

Fuel up (with booze) at the Motor Row Craft Beer & Wine Fest This new entry to the craft beer party is looking to make a splash in the South Loop’s historic Motor Row District, where breweries have replaced auto manufacturers. Brewers include established Chicagoans like Atlas and Vice District as well as up-and-coming suburbanites such as Cahoots, Noon Whistle, and Urban Legend.

Wabash Ave between 16th and 18th Sts

Fuel up (with booze) at the Motor Row Craft Beer & Wine Fest Wabash Ave between 16th and 18th Sts This new entry to the craft beer party is looking to make a splash in the South Loop’s historic Motor Row District, where breweries have replaced auto manufacturers. Brewers include established Chicagoans like Atlas and Vice District as well as up-and-coming suburbanites such as Cahoots, Noon Whistle, and Urban Legend.

Sean Cooley/Thrillist

Date

Event

Location

Sep 6 Sun

Get sloppy (Joes) at the Longman & Eagle “What’s Happening?!” block party The Logan Square Michelin-starred restaurant throws its free annual street bash with Sloppy Joes, sausages, and elotes aplenty as well as cocktails and guest brews on tap. There will be live music throughout the day including a closing set from Windy City Soul Club (6-10pm).

Schubert between Kedzie and Troy (near Longman & Eagle)

Get sloppy (Joes) at the Longman & Eagle “What’s Happening?!” block party Schubert between Kedzie and Troy (near Longman & Eagle) The Logan Square Michelin-starred restaurant throws its free annual street bash with Sloppy Joes, sausages, and elotes aplenty as well as cocktails and guest brews on tap. There will be live music throughout the day including a closing set from Windy City Soul Club (6-10pm).

Flickr/Josh Koonce

Date

Event

Location

Sep 7 Mon

Sail with an open bar at the Labor Day Sail in Chicago Instead of the typical lame Labor Day mattress sale, startup mattress company Casper is hosting a Labor Day Sail so you can spend the afternoon aboard the Tall Ship Windy sailboat with an open bar, passed hors d’oeuvre and, of course, a Casper mattress to try out.

Navy Pier

Sail with an open bar at the Labor Day Sail in Chicago Navy Pier Instead of the typical lame Labor Day mattress sale, startup mattress company Casper is hosting a Labor Day Sail so you can spend the afternoon aboard the Tall Ship Windy sailboat with an open bar, passed hors d’oeuvre and, of course, a Casper mattress to try out.

Flickr/JohnPickenPhoto

Date

Event

Location

Sep 11-12

Take in the fine KC BBQ at the Windy City BBQ Classic Chicago’s only Kansas City BBQ Society-sanctioned championship features 100 of the BBQ world’s finest pit masters going head to head to cook the best BBQ pork, ribs, chicken, and brisket using only wood or charcoal (no gas or electricity). And you can pair it all with plenty of Lagunitas, Tito’s, and Ole Smoky Tennessee Moonshine.

Soldier Field

Take in the fine KC BBQ at the Windy City BBQ Classic Soldier Field Chicago’s only Kansas City BBQ Society-sanctioned championship features 100 of the BBQ world’s finest pit masters going head to head to cook the best BBQ pork, ribs, chicken, and brisket using only wood or charcoal (no gas or electricity). And you can pair it all with plenty of Lagunitas, Tito’s, and Ole Smoky Tennessee Moonshine.

Courtesy of Riot Fest

Date

Event

Location

Sep 11-13

Hit the new park location of Riot Fest Riot Fest debuts its new home in Douglas Park with Snoop Dogg, Modest Mouse, Iggy Pop, Billy Idol, Ice Cube, and well over 100 additional acts, not to mention carnival rides and freaky circus sideshow acts. It also bought a car this year, so flag someone down and ask for a ride.

Douglas Park

Hit the new park location of Riot Fest Douglas Park Riot Fest debuts its new home in Douglas Park with Snoop Dogg, Modest Mouse, Iggy Pop, Billy Idol, Ice Cube, and well over 100 additional acts, not to mention carnival rides and freaky circus sideshow acts. It also bought a car this year, so flag someone down and ask for a ride.

Flickr/THEMACGIRL*

Date

Event

Location

Sep 12 Sat

Enjoy cask-conditioned brews at the Logan Square Beer Festival Cask-conditioned, barrel-aged, and collaborative brews from the likes of Ale Syndicate, Half Acre, and Solemn Oath are in the spotlight over two tasting sessions with live bands, a “brewery swag” raffle, and, yes, beer hipsters.

Logan Square Auditorium

Enjoy cask-conditioned brews at the Logan Square Beer Festival Logan Square Auditorium Cask-conditioned, barrel-aged, and collaborative brews from the likes of Ale Syndicate, Half Acre, and Solemn Oath are in the spotlight over two tasting sessions with live bands, a “brewery swag” raffle, and, yes, beer hipsters.

Courtesy of Slow Food Chicago

Date

Event

Location

Sep 13 Sun

Eat all the meats at Slow Food Chicago’s Annual Farm Roast Join chefs from Nico Osteria, Butcher & Larder, Vie, and more as they cook duck, rabbit, lamb, and pork in Local Foods’ new event space with butchering demos, beers from Pipeworks and Begyle, and cocktails from Billy Sunday.

Local Foods

Eat all the meats at Slow Food Chicago’s Annual Farm Roast Local Foods Join chefs from Nico Osteria, Butcher & Larder, Vie, and more as they cook duck, rabbit, lamb, and pork in Local Foods’ new event space with butchering demos, beers from Pipeworks and Begyle, and cocktails from Billy Sunday.

Courtesy of Rental Car Rally

Date

Event

Location

Sep 18 Fri

Be sure to get extra insurance for Rental Car Rally Chicago The infamous road trip/party/Halloween nightmare comes in from the coasts to hit Chicago for the first time via a ridiculous 36-hour journey through the backroads to Detroit. Costumed teams in comically shitty cars compete to discover obscure locations along the way, prank the competition, and party like the world is ending. Which, based on this event, it might be.

Chicago to Detroit

Be sure to get extra insurance for Rental Car Rally Chicago Chicago to Detroit The infamous road trip/party/Halloween nightmare comes in from the coasts to hit Chicago for the first time via a ridiculous 36-hour journey through the backroads to Detroit. Costumed teams in comically shitty cars compete to discover obscure locations along the way, prank the competition, and party like the world is ending. Which, based on this event, it might be.

Flickr/TheSiteClub

Date

Event

Location

Sep 25-27

Drink from an irrationally large mug for Oktoberfest Chicago It wouldn’t be fall in Chicago without drinking beer in a church. A famous Lakeview church that has its own German beer hall, to be exact, not to mention the usual Oktoberfest accoutrements of brats, pretzels, boobs, and Bavarian bands.

St. Alphonsus Roman Catholic Church

Drink from an irrationally large mug for Oktoberfest Chicago St. Alphonsus Roman Catholic Church It wouldn’t be fall in Chicago without drinking beer in a church. A famous Lakeview church that has its own German beer hall, to be exact, not to mention the usual Oktoberfest accoutrements of brats, pretzels, boobs, and Bavarian bands.