Upcoming Downtown Events

Today – Panel Discussion
Civilian Police Oversight: A Bridge Too Far? Kevin Graham, president of Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7; Lori Lightfoot, partner at Mayer Brown LLP; and Harry Osterman, 48th Ward Alderman. 11:30 a.m. reception, 12:00 p.m. luncheon. Maggiano’s Banquets, 111 West Grand Avenue. Cost: $50. Map. More info.
Tuesday – Panel Discussion
City Club of Chicago presents The Future of the Republican Party in Illinois – a conversation with Pat Brady, government affairs consultant to Next Generation Public Affairs, a Midwest-based full-service government affairs firm, and Dan Proft, talk show host, Senior Fellow at Illinois Policy Institute, and former Republican candidate for Governor. 11:30 a.m. reception, 12:00 p.m. luncheon. Maggiano’s Banquets, 111 West Grand Avenue. Cost: $50. Map. More info.
2nd Ward Alderman Brian Hopkins will discuss issues of special interest to Streeterville residents at a Town Hall meeting. A question-and-answer session will follow. Register in advance to submit questions. Hosted by Streeterville Organization of Active Residents. Since his last SOAR Town Hall meeting, Alderman Hopkins has sponsored and co-sponsored citywide ordinances that include historic preservation upkeep and condominium association privacy. 6:00 p.m., Drake Hotel, 140 East Walton Place. Registration begins at 5:30 p.m. Free admission. Map. More info.
Book launch of Automatic Architecture: Motivating Form after Modernism by Sean Keller, recently published by University of Chicago Press. Automatic Architecture examines architects’ enthusiasm for autonomic design methods in the 1960s and 1970s. Influenced by the new science of computing, these architects tried to replace individual intuition with methods that were thought to be objective, logical, or natural. 6:00 p.m., Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, Madlener House, 4 West Burton Place. Map. More info.
Civil rights icon and Chicago native Diane Nash recounts her work and shares her perspective on the civil rights movement. A leader of the Nashville Student Movement, Nash was active in coordinating civil protests in the South, including the Freedom Ride from Birmingham, Alabama, to Jackson, Mississippi, in 1961. Hear from this first-hand witness to history as she reflects on how those experiences relate to the challenges we face today. 6:30-8:00 p.m., Chicago History Museum, 1601 North Clark Street, McCormick Theater. Admission: $10. Map. More info.
Celebrate annual Illinois Craft Beer Week as Shoreline Sightseeing kicks off its Brew Cruise season featuring the fine craft beers of Revolution Brewing. Cruise will include beer samplings of Revolution’s carefully created craft beers, light appetizer pairings, lively DJ entertainment, and 90-minute Chicago River cruise complete with spectacular views. 8:00 p.m., departs from Shoreline’s dock at Polk Bros Park at southwest corner of Navy Pier. Tickets: $49 per person, must be 21. Cash bar will also be available. Map. More info.
May 26
Memorial Day Parade and Wreath Laying Ceremony. Wreath Laying Ceremony will begin at 11:00 a.m. on Daley Plaza, Dearborn & Washington Streets. Parade will then step off at noon and proceed south on State Street from Lake Street to Van Buren Street. Map. More info.
May 24-26 – Performance
Museum of Contemporary Art presents JACK &, a genre-bending comedy of errors that considers the unmeasurable damage of incarceration on one’s dreams and aspirations. Through the lens of rituals for entering society, such as prison re-entry programs and debutante balls, this three-part performance explores the lived experience of rebuilding one’s life after prison and the transitions and transformations that bridge society’s disparate worlds. 7:30 p.m., MCA Stage, Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 East Chicago Avenue. Tickets: $30. Map. More info.
May 26 – Performance
Chicago House Music Festival will kick off the summer in Millennium Park. Throughout the day, DJs and live performances on three stages will showcase the various sounds and styles of house music, the musical form born in Chicago that has gone on to revolutionize dance music internationally. 1:00-9:00 p.m., Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Great Lawn, North Chase Promenade, and South Chase Promenade. Free admission. Map. More info.
May 31 – Panel Discussion
A Conversation about Neighborhood Economic Development with Meghan Harte, executive director of the Chicago office of Local Initiatives Support Corporation, a national leader in comprehensive community development; Jeff Bartow, executive director of Southwest Organizing Project; Perry Gunn, executive director of Teamwork Englewood; and Carlos Nelson, CEO/Executive Director of Greater Auburn-Gresham Development Corporation. 11:30 a.m. reception, 12:00 p.m. luncheon. Maggiano’s Banquets, 111 West Grand Avenue. Cost: $50. Map. More info.
June 1
Presentations that address transportation development and finance, 21st century freight planning, redevelopment of Lake Shore Drive, transit equity, and other issues are on the agenda at the 33rd Annual Transport Chicago 2018 conference. This popular annual education and networking event is managed by members of the Chicagoland transportation industry. Other sessions and panel discussions focus on mitigating declines in transit use, growth of autonomous vehicles, plans to extend the CTA Red Line, and right-of-way uses. 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., Holiday Inn Chicago Mart Plaza, 350 West Mart Center Drive. Cost: $125 per person ($65 for students). Open to all interested parties. Map. More info.
June 1-2 – Performance
Chicago Gospel Music Festival with local and national artists celebrating the genre’s foundational roots in Chicago. Headliners include The Canton Spirituals, Israel & New Breed, Oh Happy Day: Chicago Choirs Celebrate the Music of Edwin Hawkins, The Walls Group, The Tri-City Singers Reunion, and more. June 1 – Noon to 4:00 p.m., Chicago Cultural Center, 78 East Washington Street. 5:30-9:30 p.m., Jay Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park, 201 East Randolph Street. June 2 – Noon to 9:30 p.m., Jay Pritzker Pavilion. Admission: Free. Map. More info.
June 2-October 1 – Exhibition Opening
Alexis Rockman: The Great Lakes Cycle. is a multi-faceted project that explores the past, present, and future of North America’s Great Lakes, one of the world’s most emblematic and ecologically significant ecosystems. Anchored by five mural-sized oil paintings, each exploring a theme that emerged during Rockman’s field research and engagement with Great Lakes experts. Chicago Cultural Center, 78 East Washington Street, Exhibit Hall, 4th Floor North. Free admission. Map. More info.
June 5
SOAR Farmers Market opens. Head over to MCA Plaza and say hello to this year’s vendors, offering fresh, locally-grown fruits and vegetables, meats, cheeses, herbs, grains, flowers, and prepared foods. Throughout the season, local chefs will demonstrate and sample what’s cooking in their kitchens. 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., MCA Plaza, Mies van der Rohe Way between Chicago Avenue and Pearson Street. Map. More info.
June 5 – Gala
The Big Fish Ball is Friends of the Chicago River’s largest fundraising event. It includes a fabulous cocktail hour that brings together 500 leaders and young professionals from the Chicago community, a delightful three-course dinner, and a program that honors the recipients of the Chicago River Blue Awards, the highest achievement in river-sensitive designs along the river. The evening also includes a silent and live auction and a raffle featuring gifts and certificates from hundreds of local businesses. 5:30-8:30 p.m., Westin Chicago River North, 320 North Dearborn Street. Map. More info.
June 6
City Club of Chicago presents Timothy Killeen, President of the University of Illinois. Killeen took office as the University’s 20th president, bringing more than three decades of experience as an educator, researcher, and administrator in public higher education and in leadership positions with national scientific research agencies. 11:30 a.m. reception, 12:00 p.m. luncheon. Maggiano’s Banquets, 111 West Grand Avenue. Cost: $50. Map. More info.
June 7
City Club of Chicago presents Howard Tullman on The Factory of the Future: From Ideas to Invoices. Tullman is Executive Director of the brand-new Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship, now being built on the campus of Illinois Tech. The 70,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility will provide training and programs for all undergraduate and graduate students in the innovative design, development, and delivery of new products and services as well as courses specifically focused on entrepreneurship. 11:30 a.m. reception, 12:00 p.m. luncheon. Maggiano’s Banquets, 111 West Grand Avenue. Cost: $50. Map. More info.
June 7 – Gala
Gene Siskel Film Center Annual Benefit. Cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, dinner, award presentation, and Conversation with Ethan Hawke. 6:00 p.m., The Ritz-Carlton, 160 East Pearson Street. Tickets start at $500. Map. More info.
June 7 – Gala
Celebrate the recipes of success at Chicago Help Initiative’s gala. Bite-size samples from your favorite Chicago restaurants. Premium open bar. Auction items and raffle prizes. 6:00 p.m., The Montgomery Club, 500 West Superior Street. Tickets: $125. Map. More info.
June 8 – Panel Discussion
Architectural photographer and historical preservationist Richard Nickel would have turned 90 years old on May 31, 2018. See in person artifacts that Nickel salvaged. Tim Samuelson, John Vinci, and Bianca Bova will discuss the importance of Nickel and the stories behind some of the artifacts. Tim and Bianca will also discuss the newly formed Chicago Architectural Preservation Archive, an organization devoted to the documentation and stewardship of materials related to the practices of early urban preservationists who gravitated around Nickel. Chicago Cultural Center, 78 East Washington Street, 5th floor, Millennium Park Room. Map. More info.
June 9
Structural Engineers Association of Illinois Annual Awards Banquet. SEAOI members, colleagues, spouses, and friends gather to celebrate the profession of structural engineering. Winners of the Excellence in Structural Engineering Awards, John F. Parmer Award, SEAOI Service Award, and Outstanding Young Engineer Award will be announced. Program has been condensed this year to allow attendees time to explore the Saturday Night Live: The Experience exhibit. 5:30 p.m., cocktails and hors d’oeuvres. 7:00 p.m., dinner and awards presentations. Museum of Broadcast Communications, 360 North State Street. Cost: $150 per person. Map. More info.
June 9 – Gala
Erie-LaSalle Body Shop and Genesis Electric & Technologies present A Night in Hollywood, supporting Gilda’s Club Chicago. Dancing and live music from The Afrodisiacs, charitable casino games, hors d’oeuvres, premium cocktails, Gibsons signature dinner and desserts, silent auction, and grand raffle prizes. 7:00 p.m., The Montgomery Club, 500 West Superior Street. Tickets: $150. Map. More info.
June 12
River North Business Association’s Business After Hours networking event at House of Blues. Spend a memorable evening with great food at a rock star location. Bring plenty of business cards for a fantastic night of networking. 5:30-7:00 p.m., House of Blues, 329 North Dearborn Street. Map. More info.
June 13
City Club of Chicago presents A Geopolitical Conversation about the Korean Peninsula with Major General James A. ‘Spider’ Marks, head of Geopolitical Strategy and Academy Securities Senior Advisory Board Member. General Marks is founder and president of The Marks Collaborative, an advisory for corporate leader development, education, and training, and has led entrepreneurial efforts in global primary research and national security. 7:30 a.m. reception, 8:00 a.m. breakfast. Maggiano’s Banquets, 111 West Grand Avenue. Cost: $50. Map. More info.
June 15
It’s a sure sign of summer – Shoreline Sightseeing and Revolution Brewing’s annual Brew Cruises. Featuring samples of Revolution’s award-winning craft beers, appetizers, live music, and a 90-minute cruise complete with amazing nighttime views of Chicago skyline and landmarks. Depart 8:00 p.m. from Shoreline’s dock at Polk Bros Park at the southwest corner of Navy Pier. Tickets: $49 per person. Must be 21. More Brew Cruises July 20 and August 17. Map. More info.
June 16
16th annual Tasting Stars premiere champagne event to benefit A Silver Lining Foundation’s Buy A Mom A Mammogram program, which funds the entire spectrum of breast health testing, mammograms through biopsy, for uninsured and under-insured individuals. Enjoy a variety of exquisite sparkling wines and champagnes, delicious hors d’oeuvres, music and dancing, raffle, auctions, and more. 7:00-11:00 p.m., DIRTT Environmental Solutions Showroom, 325 North Wells Street, 10th floor. Tickets: $175 per person. Map. More info.
June 18
City Club of Chicago presents Mike Quigley, elected to Congress in 2009 to represent Illinois’ 5th District. A former Cook County Commissioner who began his career serving as an aide to former 44th Ward Alderman Bernie Hansen, Quigley has served his community for more than 30 years. 11:30 a.m. reception, 12:00 p.m. luncheon. Maggiano’s Banquets, 111 West Grand Avenue. Cost: $50. Map. More info.
June 21
City Club of Chicago presents Juan Salgado, Chancellor of City Colleges of Chicago. Salgado has focused his more than 20-year career on improving education and economic opportunities for residents in low-income communities. As Chancellor, he oversees Chicago’s community college system, serving more than 80,000 students across seven colleges. 11:30 a.m. reception, 12:00 p.m. luncheon. Maggiano’s Banquets, 111 West Grand Avenue. Cost: $50. Map. More info.
June 28-August 25 – Performance
22nd Annual Chicago SummerDance, the largest annual outdoor live music and dancing series in the United States. Dancers of all abilities are invited to the Spirit of Music Garden in Grant Park, Taste of Chicago, Millennium Park, and Chicago Park District locations throughout the city. The FREE programs in Grant Park take place each Thursday, Friday, and Saturday evenings from 6:00 to 9:30 p.m. and Sunday afternoons from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m., on most dates between June 28 and August 24. Map. More info.
Got an event coming up in downtown Chicago? We want to hear about it. Send information to news@loopnorth.com. Please include date, time, location, cost, and a URL for more info.

Loop NorthDisplay upcoming downtown Chicago events from your website!

Learn more about Loop North’s Event Feed.

Also available as RSS feed.