Weekend 101: Memorial Day Weekend 2019

Memorial Day marks the unofficial start of summer, perhaps the best season in Chicago. Take advantage of an extra day with the start of summer programming at Navy Pier, two festivals, a concert and cookout, and more. Plus, check out Lettuce Entertain You’s dining specials for the long weekend, and find out why we celebrate Memorial Day.

Live on the Lake!

Memorial Day Weekend 2019: Live on the Lake at Navy Pier
Photo by James Richard, IV.

Begins May 24
Chicago

Enjoy a variety of live music and food and drinks during this free concert series at Navy Pier’s Miller Lite Beer Garden. The series continues Saturdays and Sundays (plus select special dates) through Sept. 2. Additional summer programming beginning this weekend at Navy Pier includes Wave Wall Wax (May 25) and Aon Summer Fireworks (May 25).

Barrington Art Festival

Memorial Day Weekend 2019: Barrington Art Festival
Photo courtesy of Amdur Productions.

May 25-26
Barrington

Make your way to Downtown Barrington this weekend to discover art from more than 100 artists and enjoy live music, food, and kids activities at this free festival.

Belmont-Sheffield Music Fest

Memorial Day Weekend 2019: Belmont-Sheffield Music Fest
Photo courtesy of Special Events Management.

May 25-26
Chicago

This music festival returns for its 35th year with tribute bands and local musicians, food, drinks, and artisans.

Randolph Street Market

Memorial Day Weekend 2019: Randolph Street Market
Photo courtesy of Randolph Street Market.

May 25-26
Chicago

This vintage market’s Garden Party Summer Season Opener is this weekend. While you shop, enjoy both the Market Bar and the Smirnoff Vodka Bar as well as the new Dynamic Designer Duets series featuring tents around the market decorated by top interior designers.

Memorial Day Cookout 2019

Memorial Day Weekend 2019: Rosemont's Rockin in the Park
Photo courtesy of Village of Rosemont.

May 26
Rosemont

Rosemont’s Rockin’ in the Park summer concert series begins with this cookout, fireworks show, and concert by Infinity and Kaleidoscope Eyes.

More Can’t-Miss Events:

  • Don’t miss Comedy at the House, a laugh-out-loud funny comedy show at the Winnetka Community House, on May 25. Participating comics include Tim Walkoe (ABC’s “America’s Funniest People”), Rocky LaPorte (NBC’s “Last Comic Standing”), and Richard Laible (The Second City alumnus).
  • Spend your weekend at Millennium Park May 25-27 for the Chicago House Music Festival.
  • Bike the Drive returns May 26 to give you a chance to ride your bike along a car-free Lake Shore Drive. The event supports Active Transportation Alliance and its work “to promote walking, bicycling and public transit to create healthy, sustainable and equitable communities.”

Anna Carlson writes the weekly Weekend 101 column and monthly Recommended Events. A graduate of the University of Missouri, her work has been published in Chicago Parent, Inside Columbia Magazine, and Central California Parent Magazine. She is a proud supporter of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital