Festival listings: June
* Keys to the City Piano Festival Tue 5 at 7:30pm; Thu 7–Sat 9 at 8pm; Sun 10 at 3pm. See May 21–27.
Metropia Chicago Thu 7, 2–10pm; Fri 8, 2–11pm. 4325 N Ravenswood Ave (themetropiaexperience.com). $65, two-day pass $110. This debut fest bills itself as an intimate event that combines local art and music with innovations in technology. Expect art installations along with plenty of music from the underground jam community and live-electronic scenes.
* FREE Chicago Blues Festival Fri 8, Sat 9, 11am–9:30pm; Sun 10, 11am–9pm. Grant Park, 300 S Columbus Dr (312-744-3316, chicagobluesfestival.us). Your yearly reminder that the blues has nothing to do with a box of neon-orange macaroni, the “Blues Capital of the World” celebrates with the world’s largest free blues fest. Chicago native Mavis Staples headlines.
FREE Fiesta Back of the Yards Fri 8, 5–10pm; Sat 9, 10am–10pm; Sun 10, noon–10pm. 47th St at Damen Ave (bync.org). At the 22nd fiesta, satisfy your taco cravings with local choices. Family activities, contests and Hispanic music add to this Latino-flavored street fest.
FREE Forest Park Summer Fest Fri 8, 5–11pm; Sat 9, noon–10pm. Madison St between Desplaines and Circle Aves, Forest Park (708-366-2543, summerfestfp.com). Just west of Chicago, this bash boasts two main stages, two food areas, two beer gardens and on Sat 9, a giant slide for kids.
FREE Pride of the Fox RiverFest Fri 8–Sun 10, 10am–7pm. Downtown St. Charles, east and west of the Fox River off Route 64, St. Charles (630-444-7460, prideofthefox.com). The 30th annual river shindig features dragon boat races, a craft show, a BBQ cook-off and a parade. The mainstage operates Fri 6–11pm and Sat and Sun noon–11pm.
Ribfest Chicago Fri 8, 5–10pm; Sat 9, Sun 10, noon–10pm. Lincoln Ave at Damen Ave and Irving Park Rd (ribfest-chicago.com). $5. About 50,000 pounds of ribs and BBQ will leave a trail of sticky napkins at this fest. The third annual RibMania, the Midwest’s only sanctioned rib-eating contest, will have you cheering for your favorite professional eater.
FREE Village of Homewood’s Art and Garden Street Fair Fri 8, noon–9pm; Sat 9, 10am–9pm. Martin Ave and Ridge Rd, Homewood (708-206-3375, homesweethomewood.com). Gardening workshops along with the usual music, food and family activities make up this street fair.
* FREE Chicago Tribune Printers Row Lit Fest Sat 9, Sun 10, 10am–6pm. Dearborn St between Congress Pkwy and Polk St (312-222-3917, printersrowlitfest.org). Book it to the onetime bookmaking hub of Chicago where more than 200 booksellers hawk new and antique books. Seven stages with 100-plus free lit programs, book signings, poetry readings, author discussions and even a Lil’ Lit Park for the kiddies highlight this wordy fest. After the fest-proper ends, Lit After Dark starts (Sat 6–10pm), a ticketed event featuring live music and poetry slams.
* FREE Chill & Grill Festival Sat 9, 11am–6pm; Sun 10, noon–5pm. Waveland Park, 3580 N Recreation Dr (bhgchillandgrill.com). Better Homes and Gardens and Weber Grill host this grilling get together. Local faves like GT Fish & Oyster, West Town Tavern and Black Dog Gelato offer tastings as chefs lead cooking demos and grilling contests. Tasting tickets can be purchased online for $12 or at the festival for $15.
FREE City Wilds Festival of Backyard Biodiversity Sat 9, 10am–10pm; Sun 10, 10am–3pm. North Park Village Nature Center, 5801 N Pulaski Rd (312-744-5472, chicagoparkdistrict.com). On Sat 9, the Park District wants your help in performing a “BioBlitz,” identifying the plants and animals in its backyard. Lighter activities include crafts and hiking. On Sun 10, kids can look at and interact with Tales & Scales Traveling Zoo.
Midsommarfest Sat 9, 11am–10pm; Sun 10, 11am–9pm. 5200 N Clark St (773-665-4682, starevents.com). $5. Strap on some clogs as you dance around the maypole at Andersonville’s 47th annual fest where Nordic folk dancers showcase the ’hood’s Swedish roots.
Old Town Art Fair Sat 9, 10am–8pm; Sun 10, 10am–6pm. Lincoln Ave and Wisconsin St (oldtowntriangle.com). $7, kids under 13 free. Old Town hosts its 63rd go-round, this year with the work of nearly 300 artists. The Garden Walk, a DIY tour, features urban gardens. Buy from vendor booths, sample food from local eateries, and listen to live music.
Wells Street Art Festival Sat 9, Sun 10, 10am–10pm. Wells St between North Ave and Division St (773-868-3010, chicagoevents.com). $7. More than 250 juried artists are accompanied by Old Town restaurateurs and live music for this art fest’s 38th year.
Greater Chicago Jewish Festival Sun 10, 11am–6pm. St. Paul Woods, 6594 Oakton St, Morton Grove (847-933-3000, jewishfestival.org). $5. Keep it kosher at this fest with three stages of music, dance and performance art. A food fair and an art fair fill out the festivities.