CHICAGO — Dive into local and global cinema with Chicago’s International Film Festival, explore architectural gems at Open House Chicago and get in the Halloween spirit with spooky holiday events.
Here are 39 things to do in Chicago this weekend:
Various times and locations across the city
The 59th Chicago International Film Festival kicked off Wednesday and runs through Oct. 22. Catch a variety of flicks on the big screen, from a Chicago-based documentary filmmaker’s “Bike Vessel” to Studio Ghibli’s “The Boy and the Heron” and the already acclaimed “Poor Things” from Yorgos Lanthimos. Find tickets for the festival and details about showtimes online.
Various times and locations across the city
Explore more than 170 of the city’s architectural and historical wonders for Open House Chicago. Run by the Chicago Architecture Center, the annual fest is held Saturday and Sunday with free structured and self-guided tours. It spans over 20 neighborhoods, hitting landmarks including Walt Disney’s birthplace home, the Chicago Shakespeare Theater and the Pullman National Historical Park. Find a site guide here. Block Club highlighted some new additions in the neighborhoods here.
7 p.m. Thursday-Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday
The Den Theatre, 1331 N. Milwaukee Ave.
In this genre-defying dark comedy by playwright Dave Harris, Tambo and Bones have to find creative ways to get out of the minstrel show they are trapped in: Attack the playwright? Become a famous rap legend? Tickets are $31 online, including fees. The show runs through Nov. 11.
7:30 p.m. Thursday
The Understudy, 5531 N. Clark St.
Explore Andersonville’s dark history with paranormal tour guides Orion Couling and Zack Meyer. This night of storytelling is a sit-down version of their acclaimed neighborhood walking tour. Tickets are $22 online.
6 p.m. Friday
Eli Tea Bar, 5507 N. Clark St.
Local author David Jay Collins alongside Read & Run Chicago is hosting a three-mile literary-themed run in Andersonville, inspired by his LGBTQ+ horror novels set in the neighborhood. After the run, there will be a book discussion with a drink and light bites included. Runners will also go home with a sample of Candyality caramel corn. Tickets are $10-20 online.
6:30-10 p.m. Friday
Lincoln Park Zoo, 2001 N. Clark St.
Enjoy tacos and tequila cocktails, salsa and bachata lessons, live music, a DJ, lawn games and more during an exclusive 21+ night at the zoo. Beer, wine, seltzer and other beverages will also be available. Tickets are $35 online.
8 p.m. Friday
Patio Theater, 6008 Irving Park Rd.
Leading up to Halloween, the Patio Theater will be screening horror films all month long. This Friday, to commemorate the superstitious date, catch screenings of “Friday The 13th” at 8 p.m., “Friday The 13th Part 2” a 10 p.m. and “Friday the 13th Part IV: The Final Chapter” at 11:59 p.m.
9 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. Saturday
National Museum of Mexican Art, 1852 W. 19th St.
9:15-11 a.m. Saturday
Cadinho Bakery Pop-Up, 3728 S. Honore St.
Local community group Trash People of McKinley Park is hosting its final cleanup of the season. Meet neighbors, pick up trash and enjoy free Portuguese baked goods provided by Cadinho Bakery afterwards. Sign up online.
10 a.m. Saturday
Fountain of Time, 6000 S. Cottage Grove Ave.
Run, walk or jog a 5K around Hyde Park and enjoy giveaways, shoe demos and the chance to meet with neighbors from across the city. RSVP for free online.
10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday
Rosehill Cemetery, 5800 N. Ravenswood Ave.
For this annual fall fest, the cemetery is hosting its last Historic Tour of the Year, a pumpkin weigh-in contest, scavenger hunt and more. Get tickets for free online.
10-11 a.m. Saturday
North Pond, 2610 N. Cannon Dr.
Take a gentle, guided walk around the North Pond Nature Sanctuary with Lincoln Park Conservancy docents and learn about the wildflower species in bloom. There is a donation of $10 to join the walk and help support and train the conservancy’s docents. Sign up online.
10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday
Grace Church, 3325 W. Wrightwood Ave.
Chicagoans are invited to bring their surplus of unwanted items, especially winter clothing, to this share fair. The aim is to support the community and reduce the number of items that end up in a landfill. Items will be redistributed to local organizations, nonprofits and businesses.
10 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday
1844 W. 59th St.
Celebrate the end of the harvesting season with this 4th annual fest. There will be free food boxes, crafts and activities for kids, local vendors and more. There will also be on-site resources such as free credit scores and financial advice with Fifth-Third Bank and free health advice and gift cards from Howard Brown Health.
11 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday
Pilot Project Brewing, 2140 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Grab crafts and supplies and work on creations with neighbors at a local brewing incubator. Enjoy a frosty drink or non-alcoholic beverage while you create. Masks are required for all crafters. RSVP online.
Noon-3 p.m. Saturday
Canine Crews, 1616 N. Washtenaw Ave.
Dogs and humans alike can celebrate German food and culture at this 21+ Bavarian fest. There will be an off-leash dog park, event beer stein, raffles, a pie eating contest for dogs, a themed photo booth, “paw-some” goodie bags and more. Tickets are $10 for dogs and $40 for adults online.
1-1:30 p.m. Saturday
South Chicago Farm, 9000 S. Mackinaw Ave.
Take a guided tour of the Urban Grower’s Collective South Chicago Farm and learn about how urban spaces are optimized to grow fresh produce for the community. Afterwards, there will be a volunteering session at 1:30 p.m. where attendees can learn about planting seeds, weeding, transplanting seedlings and nurturing plants. The collective asks for a $10 donation per adult and $5 donation for children, although cost should not be a barrier. Sign up online and email email@example.com for financial support.
1-4 p.m. Saturday
City Bureau, 3619 S. State St.
Decorate pumpkins, swing at a piñata, bounce around an inflatable house, play games, make puppets, enjoy food and more at this 3rd annual family-friendly celebration. There will also be free trainings, workshops and resources on City Bureau’s community programs and civic journalism.
2-4 p.m. Saturday
Epic Art House, 1850 N. Western Ave.
Paint pumpkins and work on various arts and crafts at this family-friendly fest. RSVP for free online.
3-4:30 p.m. Saturday
Japanese Culture Center, 2940 N. Lincoln Ave.
Learn how to fold paper into pumpkins, ghosts and other Halloween-themed shapes with Sensei Ty Yamamoto, a Chicago-based filmmaker, photographer and Japanese teacher with a passion for the art of folding paper. Sign up for $30 online.
6-8 p.m. Saturday
Portage Park playground, 4100 N. Long Ave.
Gather at the Portage Park playground for a celebration that includes a costume parade, cider and spooky tunes.
6:30-8:30 p.m. Saturday
Star Lounge Coffee Bar, 2521 W. Chicago Ave.
Hear from three immigrant artists as they discuss their experiences navigating creative industries. Designer and illustrator Brian Herrera, muralist DiskeUno and digital video artist Maryam Faridani will discuss how to develop your identity as an artist, share career advice and more. It is a night of storytelling “by immigrant artists, for immigrant artists.” Refreshments will be provided. RSVP for free online.
9 p.m. Saturday-2 a.m. Sunday
Logan Square Auditorium, 2539 N. Kedzie Blvd.
Dance the night away to DJs spinning house, pop, hip hop, EDM, reggae and more at this 18+ Halloween party. There will be a 21+ cash-only bar. Tickets are $12-22 online.
10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday
Indian Boundary Park, 2500 W. Lunt Ave.
Pick and decorate pumpkins at this family-friendly festival in West Ridge. There will also be carnival games, inflatables, music, a fall-themed photo station and more.
11 a.m. Sunday
DryHop Brewers, 3155 N. Broadway St.
Run, walk or jog a 5K race through Lakeview, starting and ending in a taproom. Participants will get a free craft brew from DryHop, a collector’s pint glass or seasonal swag item and a chance to win prizes. There will also be on-site festivities such as live music, games and giveaways. All ages are welcome. Registration starts at $35 online. A portion of proceeds support local groups like Chicago Parks Foundation and Chicago Run.
11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Sunday
5800 N. Ravenswood Ave.
Take a tour through Rosehill and dive into the stories behind ordinary headstones, unmarked graves, the cemetery’s artwork and more. Walkers might hear about a pop song writer turned political figure, an actor turned mayor, a woman who was present when Lincoln was shot and more. The tour will be led by Adam Selzer of Mysterious Chicago Tours, who has also authored several books on Chicago history. Tickets are $22 online.
11 a.m.-1 p.m. Sunday
35th St. Pedestrian Bridge, 3500 S. Lake Shore Dr.
With a view of Chicago’s bustling cityscape, immerse yourself in nature and enjoy a park walk and full-body yoga flow. Participants will also receive personal journals. Reservations are $15 for a single person, $25 for two and $50 for four. RSVP here.
11 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Sunday
1433 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Shop a variety of thrift pop-ups and storefronts on this thrift crawl, including The Funky Vintage Spot, The Denim Vault Spot and The T-Shirt Spot. Crawlers will get one private hour to shop each spot, breakfast snacks at the start and a mid-tour lunch from Dog Haus. Tickets are $50 online.
Noon-2 p.m. Sunday
The Cauldron Chicago, 1612 W. Division St.
Carve and paint pumpkins at this festive workshop, which takes place every Sunday in October. Pumpkins, paint and tools will be provided. Each guest will also get a mug of HallowCream, cider with salted caramel whipped cream, to sip on as they work.
Noon-5 p.m. Sunday
Alhambra Palace Restaurant, 1240 W. Randolph St.
Feast on prime rib, hashbrowns, eggs, waffles, kabobs and more for brunch while enjoying a cirque variety shows and DJs spinning international hits. All ages are welcome. Tickets are $30-60 online — or free if it’s your birthday.
1-5 p.m. Sunday
Pilot Project Brewing, 2140 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Enjoy an autumnal beer flight for humans and a “bark-uterie” board for pups. Tickets are $16 online.
3-5 p.m. Sunday
Kalapriya Center for Indian Performing Arts, 2101 S. Wabash Ave.
Celebrate the annual Hindu festival Navaratri with food, drinks, rangoli making, arts and crafts and more. This fall celebration is hosted by the Kalapriya Center for Indian Performing Arts. Sign up online.
6 p.m. Sunday
The Newport Theater, 956 W. Newport Ave.
Put on your platforms for a night of burlesque, clown, drag and variety performances followed by a disco dance party. There will be specialty cocktails, intimate tables and a “speakeasy feel.” Tickets are $25 for general admission and $40 for VIP online.
8:30-4 p.m. Sunday
Theater on the Lake, 2401 N. Lake Shore Dr.
Sample Blood Mary cocktails and vote for your favorite as Chicago’s best, shop an artisan market, enjoy brunch bites, fitness classes, lawn games and more. Tickets start at $50 online. A portion of proceeds support K9 4 Keeps, a dog rescue non-profit.
PLUS: Five Picks From Our Partners At
10 p.m. Friday
Radius, 640 W. Cermak Rd.
Have some fun and party with Zhu Friday night at Radius.
10:30 p.m. Friday
Chop Shop, 2033 W. North Ave.
Join Dopapod for a post-Phish party at Chop Shop this Friday.
8 p.m. Saturday
Credit Union 1 Arena, 525 S. Racine Ave.
Don’t miss The Legends of Hip Hop in action at Credit Union 1 Arena.
7 p.m. Saturday
Reggies, 2105 S. State St.
Atlanta-band The Woggles are heading to Reggies for a show this Saturday!
8 p.m. Sunday
Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln Ave.
Catch Small Black at Lincoln Hall this Sunday.
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