The Best Summer Arts Festivals
Feast your eyes on (and fill your home with) the beautiful work of acclaimed artists visiting our area from around the nation. Here’s Sheridan Road’s suggested itinerary of this summer’s must-see art fests, where the shopping, sounds, and scenery will captivate you as much as the beautiful art.
Art on the Plaza
When: June 11–12, Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Plaza del Lago in Wilmette
What: Up to 80 artists from across the nation will be showcasing their fine works in Wilmette’s historic Plaza del Lago shopping center during the North Shore Art League’s 6th annual fair.
Old Town Art Fair
When: June 11–12, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Where: Lincoln Avenue and Wisconsin Street in Chicago
What: Celebrating its 62nd anniversary this year, Old Town Art Fair will feature 260 nationally acclaimed artists chosen by an independent jury of professional artists, gallery owners, and museum curators.
Wells Street Art Festival
When: June 11–12, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Where: North Wells Street, between North Avenue and Division Street in Chicago
What: One of Chicago’s most prestigious art fairs, the festival will showcase a wide range of art mediums along with a silent auction and music from well-known bands including 10,000 Maniacs.
Randolph Street Market Festival
When: June 25–26 and July 30–31, Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sundays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: 1350 block of West Randolph Street and inside the Beaux Arts Plumbers Hall, 1340 West Washington Boulevard in Chicago
What: Our versions of London’s Portobello and Paris’ Clignancourt, this European-style, indoor-outdoor antique market has been recognized as one of the “top 3 of national urban antique markets” by Travel & Leisure.
Gold Coast Art Fair
When: July 9–10, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Where: Grant Park in Chicago
What: The third oldest art fair in Chicago will host a massive collection of approximately 450 juried artists in its new lakefront location in Grant Park.
Chicago Botanic Garden Art Festival
When: July 1–3, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: 1000 Lake Cook Road in Glencoe
What: Stroll through the gorgeous Esplanade and shop the booths of artists who will be selling paintings, sculpture, jewelry, photography, and furniture, all with a botanic theme or made from plant materials. Artists will also give interactive demonstrations throughout the weekend.
North Shore Festival of Art at Old Orchard
When: July 23–24, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Old Orchard Shopping Center in Skokie
What: Shop both the booths of the country’s finest artists and your favorite shops at this North Shore festival. The fest will not only offer one-of-a-kind pieces of art, but also activities for children and live music.
Glencoe Festival of Art
When: July 30–31, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Where: Park Avenue and Green Bay Road in Glencoe
What: Expected to attract nearly 20,000 art lovers from the North Shore and beyond, this festival nestled amongst Glencoe’s cute cafes and boutiques will showcase the work of 120 juried artists.