Wintertime in Chicago can be an ideal time to explore many of the area's wonderful cultural activities. Just because the weather is cold lately does not mean the fun and activities have to stop. Ice skating, children's concerts, family dances, and a horse-drawn wagon ride are among the popular upcoming events.
2424 N. Lincoln, Chicago
An all-ages concert by and for kids will take place on Saturday, February 2, at Lincoln Hall in Chicago. Parents and children will find entertainment such as concerts, a musical petting zoo, face painting, and a photo booth.Special guest John Stirratt, from the hugely popular Chicago-based group Wilco, will perform, along with Intonation Music Workshop kid bands Scorps, Rhymeschool, Pop Tots, and White Diamond. Tickets, which are available in advance or at the door, range from $3-$7.
Wonders of Winter
Mayslake Peabody Estate
1717 31st St., Oak Brook
On Saturday, February 2, from 10 a.m.-1 p.m., the gorgeous Mayslake Peabody Estate will host the Wonders of Winter, a free family-friendly event featuring horse-drawn wagon rides, hikes, ice cutting displays, and more. A special nature photography exhibit will also be on display through March 3.
The extraordinary estate has an impressive history and currently is home to art exhibits, a theater, musical productions, and classes, as well as many weddings throughout the years.
Valentine's Day Family Dances
Various Chicago Park District facilities, including:
Bosley Playground Park
3044 S. Bonfield St., Chicago
2741 W. Montrose, Chicago
The kids will enjoy dancing with Mom and Dad at one of the several upcoming Valentine's Day dance parties taking place throughout the city in the month of February.
Several fun activities are planned for February 8, including the free Family Dance at Bosley Playground Park from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and a Mother/Son, Daddy/Daughter Dance at Chicago's Horner Park.
During the Horner Park event, the $10 charge includes live music, a dance contest, and refreshments.
For information about all the family-friendly dances in the Windy City, visit the Chicago Park District's website.
Main Street and Curtiss Street, Downers Grove
During February 8-10, Downers Grove will be hosting Ice Fest, featuring a variety of exciting attractions and things to see and do. Among the highlights are a Ronald McDonald magic show, a pancake breakfast, a performance by the Radio Disney Road Crew, live entertainment, and a movie screening of "Ice Age: Continental Drift."
MB Financial Park
5501 Park Place, Rosemont
Currently open through February 24, ice skating fans will appreciate hanging out at MB Financial Park in Rosemont, Illinois, where skating is free for those who have their own skates. Skate rental is $8. The hours of operation are 4 p.m.-9 p.m., Monday-Thursday (till 10 p.m. on Friday); 11 a.m.-10 p.m. on Saturday; and 11 a.m.-8 p.m. on Sunday
What's great about this activity is that there is a huge climate-controlled rink, parking is free with validation, and there are a number of moderately priced restaurants in the area.
Beverly Arts Center Benefit
2407 W. 111th St., Chicago
Beverly Arts Center will be having a benefit auction on Saturday, February 9. Tickets are $50 per person, which includes music, cash bar, sweets, and live and silent auctions. Guests can bid on a Hanson Gatto electric guitar and a private tour of the Art Institute Modern Wing. The proceeds from the event will go toward arts programs and all-ages education programs at the nonprofit facility.
Robert Levy has a diverse background in the arts and has had the pleasure of interviewing professional actors, musicians, producers, and civic leaders. In addition, Robert is a Chicago-based musician and artist who has produced several CDs and been featured and interviewed on "Chicago Acoustic Underground," "Chic-A-Go-Go," and WLUW.