Maifest It's once again time for Maypole dancing and lederhosen as Lincoln Square celebrates the arrival of spring in Germany. Other highlights include a ceremonial keg tapping, the May Queen crowning ceremony and a set by the always lively trio in the matching vests and bowties, the Polkaholics. Lincoln Square, May 31, 5–11pm; Jun 1, noon–11pm; Jun 2, noon–10pm.
Chicago Turkish Festival If all you know is that it's Istanbul and not Constantinople, head on over to this event to sip Turkish coffee, eat baklava and orchid ice cream, and learn about Turkish and Turkish-American culture. See the whirling dervishes and browse grocery stands, handmade ceramics and jewelry. Pioneer Court. Jun 1, 10am–9pm.
Millennium Art Festival In the shadow of Millennium Park, the fest's fifth year includes dozens of lesser-known artists showing off paintings, photography and jewelry. If the hordes of tourists overwhelm, there's live easy-listening tunes and eats from local restaurants. Unimpressed by the art? Just blocks away, the Modern Wing's masterworks beckon. Michigan Ave and Lake St. Jun 1, 10am– 5pm; Jun 2 10am–5pm.
RECOMMENDED: Visit the Summer Festivals page for more upcoming Chicago fests.
I know, we missed it, too. That's why we're bringing back the crazy shit we, and our eavesdropping readers, overhear around town. Find it on the blog every Thursday (yeah, we're a little late this week, but you heard about the bombshell news, right?). Send Jake Malooley (firstname.lastname@example.org) the hilarious quotes you overhear and he'll decide if they're bizarre enough to make the cut. So without further ado, here's this week's Heard on the Street.
Our senior digital marketing manager, Erin Delahanty, has many skills, and one of them is finding crazy stuff you can buy on the Interwebs. In honor of the Blackhawks vs. L.A. Kings series, she's unearthed some fan-paraphernalia gems. Like dog sweaters. And adult footie pajamas that remove any trace of sexuality you might have. Enjoy!
It's a bittersweet day at Time Out Chicago as we announce that Restaurants and Bars editor Julia Kramer is leaving the site to become associate editor at Bon Appetit magazine. I've had the privilege of watching Julia over the past five years transform from a part-time writer (covering TV, of all things) to associate Food & Drink editor to Restaurants & Bars editor, and in so doing, establish herself as one of the most respected and essential food critics in Chicago. The Time Out staff could not be happier for her; a position at the best food magazine in the country (in my opinion) is something she deserves and has earned. That said, we'll miss the hell out of her, and her wall-shaking laugh. You'll be hearing from Julia over the next 10 days or so until she leaves, including a farewell of sorts highlighting the best, worst and most bewildering of times as a Chicago food critic.
So who's going to replace Julia? The search is on, so if you're confident you can fill her big, fashionable shoes, send a cover letter, resume and food writing clips to me, email@example.com, asap.
The city's first diagonal crosswalk opened today at State Street and Jackson Boulevard as part of a pedestrian safety pilot program by the Chicago Department of Transportation. The altered intersection, also known as a pedestrian scramble, stops all vehicles every other light cycle, allowing peds 14 seconds to cross in every direction. CDOT hopes the experiment, one facet of its Chicago Pedestrian Plan, helps reduce the number of conflicts between walkers and turning automobiles, which contribute to some 3,000 vehicle crashes involving pedestrians in Chicago every year.
Pedestrian- and bike-friendly CDOT commish Gabe Klein, formerly Washington D.C.'s transportation chief, talked about pedestrian scrambles with TOC back in 2011:
You’ve discussed creating diagonal crossings, which you pilot tested in D.C., here in Chicago. Which intersections?
One of the five- or six-way intersections, like Milwaukee, North and Damen. I’ve been yelled at by taxi drivers while I’m crossing in the crosswalk with the walk signal and told to get out of the intersection. The thing that surprised me the most about Chicago is how friendly people are and how mean they get behind the wheel. [Laughs] People think their speed dictates how fast they get somewhere, and that’s something we’re going to have to change through education, enforcement and redesigning our streets so that they’re inherently safer and more efficient.
Pedestrians of five- or six-way intersections like Lincoln Avenue, Irving Park Road and Damen Avenue might be better served by the all-way, crosswise crossing pattern, but the city tends to test in the Loop. Expect a rollout to the neighborhoods to follow if the experiment at Jackson and State is deemed a success.
And what is success? As one study noted, the onus is on pedestrians, to some extent, to make the plan a good investment; if the amount of people crossing—diagonal or otherwise—against red lights and don't-walk signals is high, accidents will probably be high. Crosswalks have only so much power. They can't save you from yourself.
Did you know Jacksonville, Florida, was once the largest city in the United States by area (even if a lot of that is just swamp water and trees)? Did you know that both Lynyrd Skynyrd and Limp Bizkit are from Jacksonville? Did you know that when you arrive in Jacksonville International Airport they sell Tim Tebow T-shirts in gift shops unironically? Did you know that Southwest Airlines is starting direct service from Chicago-Midway to Jacksonville this weekend?
My parents live in Jacksonville, my sister just north on Amelia Island. I visit often. It's not the most exciting city in the country (see that skyline above? That's just about it), but the hub of northern Florida (and southern Georgia, really) has been catching up on the culinary front over the last decade and the beaches are far less crowded than downstate.
Here are five reasons to book a ticket.
1. Spring Awakening Did you have a blast last August at Lollapalooza? Well, lucky you, you can relive it all with the second installment of the Spring Awakening Festival. There's plenty of déjà vu to go around: Bassnectar, Calvin Harris, Porter Robinson, Zedd and Zed's Dead (yes, they're different) all got fists pumping on Perry's Stage in 2012. Look, there are only so many EDM acts to go around, and with Chicago now hosting four major summer fests that cater to the untz, we're bound for a bit of musical chairs. Dubstep chairs. The Soldier Field venue is apt—this fete aims for aggressive body contact. This year Spring Awakening also offers more than a dozen killer after-parties, with names like Moby, Harris, Dirty South, Nervo and Cajmere working clubs late into the night. See our complete list. Soldier Field. Jun 14, 3:30pm; Jun 15, 16 noon. 3-day pass $190; Fri $65, Fri VIP $100; Sat $90, Sun $85, Sat, Sun VIP $130. 3-day VIP sold out.
Through this weekend, we are giving away tickets to Spring Awakening. Enter to win.
2. Loops and Variations: FaltyDL and Matmos The city's free summer series Loops and Variations, which weds electronic and chamber acts in architectural music to suit the metal swoops of Pritzker Pavilion, returns with a rather stunning lineup. Kicking off the Thursday-evening events is FaltyDL, a musician who crafts thoughtful kaleidoscopic techno filled with bells and chimes for the stalwart Ninja Tune label, in collaboration with Bill Kouligas. Drew Lustman, a.k.a. FaltyDL, released the wonderful Hardcourage earlier this year. Kouligas operates the Berlin sound-art label Pan and crafts ominously pretty drones as Family Battle Snake. Expect something that sizzles, crackles and grooves. Matmos pops in on Jun 27. Millennium Park, Pritzker Pavilion. Jun 13 at 6:30pm. Free.
ART & DESIGN
"Unfinished Business: 21st-Century Home Economics." Frau Fiber, the Chicago Coalition of Household Workers, UIC's Center for Urban Economic Development and other artists, organizations and institutions create interactive experiences celebrating early home economists' efforts to secure healthy food, fair labor practices and childcare for all. Jane Addams Hull-House Museum. 10am–4pm.
Cosmix: Daft Punk: A Multimedia Mixdown Cosmix resident DJ Greg Haus and guest Chess toast the release of Random Access Memories, the new disco opus of America's favorite French robots, Daft Punk. Expect remixes, videos and deeper cuts from Thomas Bangalter. We're curious to see them try to chop and drop "Fragments of Time," the super Doobies-ish yacht rock track on the new record. Berlin. 10pm. $5, before 11pm free.
"Welcome to the Universe." The Grainger Sky Theater's second screening to be made in-house takes you a billion light years away and back to Earth, where you can zoom in on landforms rendered with NASA data that's updated weekly. Much like in the domed theater's original incarnation, a live staffer helms the daily presentations. (Screens about five times a day) Adler Planetarium. 9:30am–4pm. Price including admission $28, kids $22.
Devendra Banhart His hair is the first signifier. For his new album, Mala, freak-folk man Banhart has toned down both the freak and the folk, using vintage hip-hop equipment to record his mellow California-tropicalia tunes. It's playful and lovely, finally making him a worthy heir of Caetano Veloso, with hints of dance beats and a German interlude from his girlfriend to boot. Park West. 8pm. $25.