Revel in that glorious open air. It’s time to step out and celebrate with friends and family and make new memories at these unique summer events across the North Shore. Marvel at the beauty of the natural world in a butterfly enclosure. Enjoy live music of old favorites or local indie darlings. Or shop, splash and play at a bevy of delightful festivities for the whole family. Can you imagine what else you’ll find: What’s There to Do in Chicago’s North Shore? Do it!
Butterflies & Blooms, Chicago Botanic Garden, Glencoe
Butterflies & Blooms
Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake Cook Rd., Glencoe
May 31–Sep. 6; 10:00 am–5:00 pm daily (weather permitting)
Delight in the immersive experience of the Chicago Botanic Garden’s stunning butterfly habitat. Colorful, live butterflies and moths native of South America, Asia, North America and Africa flit among those we find here in Illinois. The 2,800-square-foot mesh enclosure welcomes all ages where nature’s stunning palette dances in the blue morphos, paper kites, starry crackers, buckeyes and Julia longwings—just to name a few. Pick up tips on how to your garden can attract more butterflies and how best to photograph them.
The Flat Five, Sketchbook Brewing Co., Skokie
Space X Sketchbook Brewing Present a Weekend of Music
Sketchbook Brewing Company, 4901 Main St., Skokie
Sponsored by Evanston SPACE
Jul. 9–11; 6:00 pm–9:45 pm
Three toe-tapping nights of music are part of a pop-up event series by Sketchbook this summer. Check out Chicago-based pop vocal super-group The Flat Five (Jul. 9), the American indie rock solo project of Evanston-based musician Jason Narducy, Split Single (Jul. 10), and the latest venture by Mekon’s founder, Jon Langford & His Fancy Men featuring Sally Timms (Jul. 11). Different local restaurants will have tasty offerings inside the Taproom (and throughout the summer), plus pick from up to 20 beers on tap—all brewed onsite. Tickets required.
The Okee Dokee Brothers, North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, Skokie
Out Back Summer Sessions
North Shore Center for the Performing Arts, 9501 Skokie Blvd., Skokie
Multiple shows, dates
The sounds of summer return in this popular outdoor concert series filling the rear parking lot of North Shore Center. The events help local artists by offering terrific gigs while listeners enjoy an evening of favorite music like Silly Love Songs: Michael Mahler Sings Paul McCartney (Jul. 1, 7:30 pm) and Signed, Sealed, Delivered: John-Mark McGaha Sings Stevie Wonder (Jul. 17, 7:30 pm). A special Family Matinee Show (Jul. 24; 11:00 am) welcomes GRAMMY® Award-winning The Okee Dokee Brothers and their captivating roots music.
Thursday Night Market, Downtown Evanston
Thursday Night Market
Fountain Square, Sherman Ave. and Davis St., Downtown Evanston
First Thursday of each month, 3:00 pm–8:00 pm
Evanston’s epicenter holds a delightful gathering place that was recently renovated to open up the cheery fountain adjacent to the beautiful memorial wall. Once a month, Downtown Evanston hosts a Thursday Night Market on the pedestrian-friendly streetscape. Each market has a different theme featuring Evanston shops, artists and makers while local entertainers boost the mood. Come by July 8 for the Health & Wellness theme. August will be all about Food & Drink.
Summer Luau, Family Aquatic Center, Wheeling
Family Aquatic Center, Wheeling Park District, 105 Community Blvd., Wheeling
Jul. 14; 4:00 pm–7:00 pm
Bring the whole family to splash down on this Hawaiian-themed pool party. Centered around faux rocks and waterfalls, the Heritage Park Family Aquatic Center is an expansive, outdoor water park. The party will transform the center into a tropical-themed play land. The wonderfully wet playground is deluged with a large tipping bucket, giant water slide, drop slides, a zero-depth main pool, a splash pool with water basketball and monkey bar activity pad, a toddler slide and a sand play area. Cool fun for all ages.
Summer Burst, Kohl Children's Museum, Glenview
Summer Burst: An EXPLORsion of Outdoor Fun
Kohl Children’s Museum, 2100 Patriot Blvd., Glenview
Jun. 2–Aug. 29, Tuesdays through Sundays; 9:00 am–1:00 pm
Make a beeline with the kiddos for interactive, STEAM-focused, open-air activities at this popular museum. Frolic through the screened-in, live Butterfly Tent; discover super-sized animatronic bug sculptures; go on a scavenger Bug Hunt for native prairie insects; or crack math problems using an app with augmented reality creatures from teddy bears to T-Rex. The Tiny Town Trike Track lets the littles pedal through a mini village. Or they can get creative in the Art Studio with individual and large-scale collaborative art activities including magnet, sand and chalk art.