Chicago Festivals and 4th of July Celebrations

Chicago Festivals Weekend Roundup for the 4th of July and Independence day holiday

Happy Independence Day! The 4th of July falls on a Tuesday this year, and the celebrations in Chicago start this weekend. There are lots of fireworks and patriotic activities, like watching – and marching – in parades, and we’ve got the best ways to celebrate in the city and the Chicago suburbs. 

Chicago Festivals & 4th of July Celebrations

International Festival of Life
This fest focuses on the heritage, lifestyle and culture of peoples of the Caribbean, Africa, Latin and the rest of North America.

  • When: Saturday – Tuesday 12pm to 10pm
  • Neighborhood: West Loop
  • Where: Union Park, 1501 W Randolph St
  • Admission: $25 – $100 Get discounted tickets 

Windy City Ribfest
You’ll have a finger-lickin’ good time at this fest featuring local and national rib-masters. The eclectic mix of music stage performers include JC Brooks & the Uptown Sound (funk), new wave band Berlin, and UK indie-popsters Alvarez Kings .

  • When: Friday & Saturday 12pm to 10pm, Sunday 12pm to 9pm
  • Neighborhood: Uptown
  • Where: Lawrence and Broadway
  • Admission: $5 suggested donation

Fireworks at Navy Pier
We get not one, but two fireworks displays from Navy Pier. The weekly show starts at its regular Saturday night time of 10:15pm, and a special Fourth of July Fireworks display will take place on Tuesday at 9:30pm. If you want a spot on Navy Pier itself be sure to get there early, and be sure to get our comprehensive guide to Navy Pier before you go.

  • When: Saturday 10:15pm and Tuesday 9:30pm
  • Neighborhood: Streeterville
  • Where: Navy Pier, 600 E Grand Ave

Grant Park Music Festival Independence Day Salute
The free outdoor music festival features patriotic favorites. When the concert is complete the fireworks begin at Navy Pier! 

  • When: Tuesday 6:30pm
  • Neighborhood: The Loop
  • Where: Millennium Park, 205 E Randolph St
  • Admission: Free

4th on 53rd Parade and Picnic
YOU get to march in a parade, and YOU get to march in a parade! Everybody gets to march in a parade! Nobody has to sit on the sidelines, unless they want to, at this community celebration.

  • When: Tuesday 10:30am
  • Neighborhood: Hyde Park
  • Where: Nichols Park, 1355 E 53rd St
  • Admission: Free

Chicago Suburban Festivals & 4th of July Celebrations

Frontier Days
This festival began as a celebration of the country’s bicentennial. It continues to celebrate, with carnival rides, food and drink, parades, and live music including Gin Blossoms, Rick Springfield, Jefferson Starship, Hoobastank, and American English.

  • When: Friday 4pm to 12:30am, Saturday and Sunday 10am to 12:30am, Monday 4:30pm to 12am, Tuesday 10am to 10pm
  • Suburb: Arlington Heights
  • Where: Recreation Park, 500 E Miner St, Arlington Heights
  • Admission: Free

American Music Festival
It’s all about Americana and roots at this music festival. The four day fest has bands both inside and out, as well as New Orleans-themed food. Note: if you don’t get your ticket in advance you’ll need cash at the door.

  • When: Friday doors open at 4:30pm; Saturday and Sunday doors open at 1pm; Monday doors open at 4pm
  • Suburb: Berwyn
  • Where: Fitzgerald’s, 6615 W Roosevelt Rd, Berwyn
  • Admission: Friday $30; Saturday – Monday $40/day

Eyes To The Skies
You will literally direct your eyes to the skies at this festival featuring both hot air balloons and fireworks. There’s also a carnival and live music, and 100% of the proceeds are donated to charity.

  • When: Friday – Sunday 12pm to 11pm; Balloon launches Saturday and Sunday at 5:30am; Fireworks Friday, Saturday and Sunday at 9:45pm
  • Suburb: Lisle
  • Where: Community Park, 1925 Ohio St, Lisle
  • Admission: $10

Morton Grove Days
This five-day Independence Day celebration includes a carnival, parade, and fireworks. They’ve also got a lineup of bands including Michael McDermott & the Duke Street Kings and The Neverly Brothers.

  • When: Friday 4pm to 11pm, Saturday & Sunday 2pm to 11pm, Monday 4pm to 11pm, Tuesday 5pm to 11pm; Parade Tuesday at 2:30pm; Fireworks Tuesday when it gets dark
  • Suburb: Morton Grove
  • Where: 2340 Dempster, Morton Grove
  • Admission: Free

Naperville Ribfest
100% of the proceeds from this award winning festival are donated to local charities and they’ve donated over $15.5 million to help eliminate child abuse and domestic violence. Headliners this year include Toby Keith, The B-52s, and The Wallflowers, but the real star of the show is the ribs.

  • When: Friday – Monday 12pm to 10pm
  • Suburb: Naperville
  • Where: Knoch Park, 724 S West St
  • Admission: Friday $40; Saturday and Sun $25/day; Monday

Plan beyond this weekend with our calendar of Chicago summer festivals.

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