May is around the corner and that means more sun, short sleeves, and afternoons spent outside. May events in Chicago are the best! The outdoor season is long-awaited, and the best activities and hotspots in the city are waiting for patrons to return. Chicago’s best spaces are (literally) in bloom, and here is a list of the best free activities to do in the windy city:
Lincoln Park Zoo: A cultural staple of the city, the Lincoln Park Zoo is full of 1,200 exotic creatures for your family to learn about and experience for free. Entertain your children for hours, transporting them for free to places far beyond Lake Michigan. If you want to take full advantage, enroll your children in the many Youth Programs, which offer scholarships for Camps, Play sessions, and Family Nature Days.
Millennium Park: This free Chicago attraction is nearly 25 acres of greenery, sculpture, and Chicago skyline views. A neighbor of the Art Institute, Millennium Park is the art experience for those on a budget. Check out the newly installed sculpture exhibits the Chicago’s most famous resident, The Bean. Stroll through Lurie Garden, a 3.5 acre “urban sanctuary” just steps off of Michigan Ave.
Chicago Riverwalk: Descend below the busy Chicago streets with family and friends to walk, run, and bike along the crisp blue waters of the Chicago River. Walk over with your family to The Jetty to see the wetland gardens and learn about the ecological makeup of the river. Or, take a minute to relax by The Marina to dine and gaze at the architectural landmarks.
Navy Pier A family favorite, head over to Streeterville for the grand-reopening on Friday, April 30th. Every Saturday in May at 9PM, the pier will host 10-minute fireworks shows for the public to enjoy. Take in the views of the sky-line, explore the Children’s Museum, or take your family to the various restaurants and entertainment centers. If you’re in need of some nostalgic entertainment and fun in Chicago, hop on the Ferris Wheel or carousel. Navy Pier is slated to be open from 10-8 on Sunday-Thursday and 10-10 on Fridays and Saturdays.
If you’re eager to see Chicago on a budget, have fun at these historic landmarks and institutions. All of these places are family friendly, easily accessible from public or private transit, and still follow all CDC guidelines and recommendations. Be sure to check out the current list of opportunities and events for these places – they hope to see you there soon!