Things to Do in Chicago: Saturday, August 2, to Friday, August 8
On this week’s agenda: Fiesta del Sol, a barbecue/craft-beer team-up, the unmistakable Lil Bub, Chicago’s next huge rock band, and a Chicago Public Schools–themed play from Theater Wit. Enjoy yourself and, as always, check Groupon for even more great things to do in Chicago.
Pilsen | Through Sunday, August 3
Forget the neon-clad crowds stuffing into Grant Park. A few L stops south lies Fiesta del Sol, the largest Latin-American festival in the Midwest and a remind of why we all loved carnival midways as kids. Rides, games, and churros aside, the Pilsen festival also features an arts and culture pavilion dedicated to Latino artists, as well as serious-minded booths dedicated to immigrants' rights, housing resources, and public health. (1400 W. Cermak Rd.; free)
Avondale | Saturday, August 2
Ten chefs. Ten craft brewers. One massive meat feast. Reps from Revolution Brewing, Finch's Beer Company, Haymarket Pub & Brewery, and more join their pitmaster counterparts in Avondale for a tasting contest where the audience decides. Tickets include samples from all 10 teams and benefit St. Viator Parish and School. (4140 W. Addison St.; $60; buy tickets here)
Lakeview | Tuesday, August 5
If you weren't up early enough for Twin Peaks' Saturday opening set at Pitchfork this year, you missed one of the most exuberant performances of the entire weekend. But fear not: this week, the Chicago four-piece marks the release of its sophomore record, Wild Onion, with an in-store performance at Reckless Records' Lakeview location. (3126 N. Broadway; free)
Lil Bub's Big Show! (Featuring David Yow)
Wrigleyville | Wednesday, August 6
Lil Bub is the world's cutest cat celebrity. David Yow is the former frontman of alt-rock great The Jesus Lizard. Together, this unlikely duo is taking over the Metro for a night of feline whimsy. General admission gets you a spot for Bub's interview with Yow on his new book, Copycat: And a Litter of Other Cats. For an extra $75 or so, you ge the world's greatest gift: a pet-and-greet with Lil Bub herself, as well as copies of both Yow's and Bub's books. (3730 N. Clark St.; $5–$88; buy tickets here)
Lakeview | Through August 17
The topic of Chicago's schools is at the heart of Principal Principle, the talked-about play written by former teacher Jack Zarrow. Set at a CPS high school not unlike the ones that dot the city, the play tackles America's education challenges without descending into the afterschool-special-style platitudes that plague many message-driven pieces. See it at Theater Wit. (1229 W. Belmont Ave.; $20–$32; buy tickets here)
Image credits: Fiesta del Sol photo by Cristobal David Mora; Lil Bub photo courtesy of Mike Bridavsky; Principal Principle photo courtesy of Theater Wit.