The best Chicago street fests for families

Written by: Laura Baginski

Do Division photo courtesy of Rep3

Summer is nearly here! In Chicago, that means plenty of cheap or free to entertain your kids outside in the glorious sunshine, especially at our city's ubiquitous summer street fests. Some fests are more family-friendly than others, so which outdoor bashes are best for bringing the little ones?

Mommy Nearest writer Rene Ryan came up with a fantastic list of the top 8 Chicago summer festivals for families, and she covers neighborhoods all over the city. (Pilsen's Fiesta del Sol is kid-friendly and free? Yes, please!) 

We commissioned our own impromptu survey of the best Chicago festivals on Facebook as part of a ticket giveaway for the NPN Indoor Street Fest. The results, in order of top vote-getters:

  1. Do Division, June 2–4: Saturday and Sunday feature the Family Fun Fest, which includes pony and train rides, kindie acts, face painting and bounce houses.
  2. Taste of Randolph, June 16–18: Known for booking great bands (Dawes is one of the many performing this year) and offering top-tier food, this fest is a must for the whole family.
  3. Lincoln Square Maifest, June 1–3: Dance to the German oompah bands with your kids, eat enormous pretzels, play carnival-style games, drink from giant steins (beer for you, soda or water for the kids, of course!). 
  4. Retro on Roscoe, August 11–13: If you have a little gearhead, he or she will love the classic cars on display, but all kids will enjoy the bounce houses, live music, face painting and more in an area just for them.
  5. Square Roots Festival, July 7–9: Organized by kid-favorite Old Town School of Folk Music, this Lincoln Square fest is chockablock with kids' activities: dancing, Wiggleworms classes, an "instrument petting zoo" and more.


Posted on May 04, 2017 at 2:37 PM