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Chicago, in American Midwest, is the hub of cultural events and festivals. From several music festivals to the best cultural shows, Chicago has it all. Also known as the Windy City, the drastic weather changes in this region do little to slow down the vibrant gale of this city, which is full of professional artists eager to display their talents. Below are some of the best events and festivals in Chicago that you must attend.

10 Unmissable Festivals In Chicago

In Chicago, there will always be something to keep the visitors occupied. No matter when you plan to visit this cultural capital, take home the memory of at least a few of these experiences.

1. Chicago Blues Festival

famous festival of Chicago

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The blues music swept everyone off their feet during the mid-twentieth century and Chicago Blues Festival brings that prominent part of time back to life! This is one of the largest music festivals in the world and is undoubtedly the grandest music festivals in Chicago. This is a three-day festival, during which one can enjoy live blues music for free. It has seen many famous faces from the music industry like Rhiannon Giddens, Bonnie Raitt, B.B. King, Bobby Rush, among others. More than a million fans come each year from every nook and corner of the world to experience this music festival in Chicago.

Next Chicago Blues Festival: June 2019

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2. Chicago Jazz Festival

Jazz Festival of Chicago

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The annual Chicago Jazz Festival gives the opportunity to both famous and budding jazz artists from all around the world just to showcase their talent. Some of the greatest jazz artists perform during this event, which makes it a must-visit festival during the months of August and September. This festival started in 1979 and has been a popular event among jazz music lovers since then. This event is held in the vast grounds of Grant Park every year during the Labor Day weekend. It is recommended that visitors get their own lawn chairs to sit comfortably and enjoy the live music here.

Next Chicago Jazz Festival: August to September 2019

3. Wells Street Art Festival

Street Art Festival

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This is one of the best Chicago street festivals in 2018. Wells Street Art Festival takes place in the historic Old Chicago Town neighborhood. Talented artisans from every part of the nation come here to sell their handmade and eco-friendly art pieces. This annual event also features live street performances by music and dance artists. An assorted range of dishes based on the local cuisine is also available at the restaurants nearby. All this and more makes this event a wholesome and entertaining experience.

Next Wells Street Art Festival Chicago: June 2019

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4. Glencoe Festival of Art

Art Festival

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This art festival in Chicago suburbs is an art lover’s place to be. More than 100 artists display their creative work here. One can witness numerous artists displaying a live demo of their painting work, which makes for an interactive and interesting activity. An assortment of several art forms displayed is here for sale. The admission to this family-friendly festival is totally free and it welcomes art-lovers of all age groups. This is one of the best Chicago suburbs festival 2018 which must be visited by every traveler in the area.

Next Glencoe Festival of Art: July 2019

5. Chicago International Film Festival

International Film Festival of Chicago

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Chicago film festival is an international event which is held annually during the Autumn season in the area. It was founded in the year 1964 and has been known as the longest-running film festival to date. This esteemed festival honors and rewards various commendable narrative features, short stories, and documentaries from over 50 countries. This is one of the must-visit Chicago festivals 2018 for an ultimate entertaining experience.

Next Chicago International Film Festival: 10th October 2018 to 21st October 2018

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6. Windy City Ribfest

food festival of Chicago

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This Chicago food festival is held in Lincoln Square every year in the months of June and July. It is one of the most popular festivals during the summer season and is popular among the meat lovers. Several well-known restaurants and joints come together to serve the delicious, lip-smacking barbeque dishes. During this festival, many live performances by local bands as well as touring bands can also be seen. Over the years the popularity of this all-original music and food event has made it internationally-recognized. This makes Chicago one of the best places to visit in the US.

Next Windy City Ribfest: June to July 2019

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7. Lollapalooza Music Festival

Music Festival

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Lollapalooza Chicago rock festival is one of the most popular music festivals in the city which lasts up to four days. One can enjoy the music played by top-class international bands, surrounded by amazing backdrops. Along with rock music, one can groove to the beats of hip-hop and electronic music as well. There are some live dance and comedy performances, along with craft booths, which offer an entertaining experience. This is one of the grandest Chicago festivals and is held annually at Grant Park where visitors can bring in their own lawn chairs to enjoy the event.

Lollapalooza Music Festival 2019 date: 1st August 2019 to 5th August 2019

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8. Arts In The Dark Festival

Awesome lighting

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This Halloween festival in Chicago is conducted on States Street in Chicago. As the sun sets on the Halloween evening, artists from every part of the city come together in spooky costumes to parade on the street. This procession is filled with many interesting characters, including masked entities, puppets, luminous lanterns, and eye-catching performances. The parade has around eight luminaries or influencers who put on an amazing show.

2019 Arts In The Dark Festival: 20th October 2019

9. Pitchfork Music Festival

people enjoying music

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This is one of the major festivals in downtown Chicago which brings music, art, and food to a single place. The popular Chicago music blog, Pitchfork, organises this event every year for all the music lovers across the city. Both amateurs and professional artists come from every part of the city to flaunt their skills and to provide great entertainment to the onlookers.

Next Pitchfork Music Festival: July 2019

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10. Chicago Dancing Festival


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Spectacular dance performances are put up by many famous dance troupes, including Juilliard School, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, American Ballet Theatre, Joffrey Ballet, and many others. The performances are put up at the Harris Theatre, Pritzker Pavilion, and Museum of Contemporary Art. Another thing about this festival is that there is no entrance fee but the audience must acquire a ticket beforehand.

Next Chicago Dancing Festival: July 2019

Further Read: 10 Best Restaurants In Chicago For A Delicious Dining Experience

These lively festivals in Chicago must be visited by every traveler who is looking for some fun and entertainment. Contact our expert travel advisors to get amazing offers on your Chicago trip.

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Category: Bot, chicago, USA

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