12 Coolest Things to do this Summer on Chicago's North Shore
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The 12 Coolest Things to Do This Summer on Chicago's North Shore

Summer is here — finally! — and it is time to get outside and enjoy everything about the season: sunshine, barbecues, and so many events that you’ll never be bored. Here are just 12 of the coolest events happening around Chicago’s North Shore this year. You’ll find even more here!
Bill Graham Exhibit at Illinois Holocaust Museum
Bill Graham Exhibit | Photo Courtesy of Illinois Holocaust Museum

Illinois Holocaust Museum

Keep learning all summer long with a visit to this museum and education center. With permanent exhibits like the Harvey L. Miller Family Youth Exhibition and Take a Stand Center, plus ongoing special exhibitions, there’s always something to see and do here. Plus, find out what programs the museum has coming up. 


Chicago Botanic Garden

Summer is the perfect time to get out and explore the Chicago Botanic Garden, which boasts 27 gardens, four natural areas, and nine islands on 385 acres.

Central Street Art Walk
Every summer, Evanston’s Central Street hosts local artists displaying their paintings, drawings, jewelry, photographs and more outside Central Street businesses.

Sunrise paddle with @skaw

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North Shore Beaches
What’s a summer on Chicago’s North Shore without a trip to the beach? You can always spend a relaxing day lounging on the sand, but why not rent a kayak or sailboat for a bit of fun out on the water? You can even take lessons beforehand or go on a kayak fishing trip or a tubing party. Learn more about all lakefront activities in Evanston and Glencoe.
Evanston Chamber Artisan Summerfest
Once called Fountain Square Art Festival, this festival is one of the highlights of summer. In addition to the more than 100 juried artists who attend to showcase their art, this festival also features wine tastings, craft beers, food, street performances, kids activities, and more.
Glencoe Festival of Art

This festival in downtown Glencoe features more than 130 juried artists from around the world. Guests can browse a variety of pieces ranging from ceramics and glass to metal and wood while watching demonstrations, stopping by booth chats, and enjoying live music, food and kids’ activities.


Anyone else slowly reciting "By the big, red barn in the great, green field..." ? #downonthefarm #boymom #momlife #chicagomom #windycitybloggers

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Historic Wagner Farm
This farm sits on 18.6 acres in Glenview and is one of the only working dairy farms in Cook County. Visit the Heritage Center for interactive exhibits, a 1930s Grocery Store and the Museum Store. Plus, Wagner Farm is the site of Glenview’s Farmers Market.

Monday Night Car Show
Monday Night Car Show
Through Labor Day, you can stroll among as many as 400 vintage and nostalgic cars in the west parking lot of Westfield Old Orchard. And don’t forget to grab dinner at one of the shopping center’s many restaurants. Oh, and of course there’s the shopping too.
Northbrook Velodrome

This outdoor lighted cycling track/velodrome hosts Thursday night races throughout the summer for the Midwest’s top cyclists. Spectators can take in all the action for only $2. Plus, the track is open to the public when it’s not reserved.

Ravinia Festival
Ravinia Festival | Photo Courtesy of Ravinia Festival

No summer is complete without a trip to Ravinia. Whether you snag tickets to one of the hottest shows of the year, catch a movie you’ve never seen before with the soundtrack performed live, or take advantage of special ticket offers, you’ll always have a wonderful evening at this outdoor music festival.

Much outdoorsy ??

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Skokie Lagoons
If you aren’t able to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city this summer, spend a day at Skokie Lagoons for a little R&R. Hit the water by canoe, kayak, sailboat or rowboat for a day of fishing (if you have a state license). Or, walk or bike along the miles of trails in this preserve. And don’t forget to pack a lunch and take a break at the Erickson Woods Picnic Grove.

Wild Belle at Winnetka Music Festival
Wild Belle | Photo Courtesy of Billions
Winnetka Music Festival
Winnetka welcomes bands from around the country at this annual summer event. In addition to rocking out with favorite bands, music lovers can enjoy tasty food, beer and wine. There’s even be a family stage for the youngest members of your group.

Find more summer fun by exploring our summer events page. What are you favorite summer activities on Chicago's North Shore? Tell us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Don't forget to share your North Shore summer adventures with us by tagging #chicagonorthshore.


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