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June Chicago festival calendar

Start enjoying summer at these top Chicago festivals, with plenty of barbecue, tunes and culture for the whole family

Photograph: cousindaniel.com
Spring Awakening Festival, June 14: Dance music fans descend on Soldier Field for DJs and EDM's biggest acts.

The sun is shining, the mercury is rising and Chicago festivals have hit the streets. June is one of the best months to get outdoors and start enjoying all that the city has to offer, whether you're a fan of hot dogs or music festivals. From neon-clad bros at Spring Awakening to the colorful revelers at the Pride Parade, everyone can appreciate one of Chicago's hottest months. Put down your summer reading (just for a moment) and take a look at our list of the best music, food and art festivals that are happening this month.

Do Division Street Fest

Critics' pick

In its eighth year, Do Division, the street shindig booked by Empty Bottle and House Call Entertainment, holds down the last weekend in May, really kicking off the summer festival season. Shopping is merely one diversion. The vendors' wares along Division Street are rivaled only by the excess of street-side eye candy—other pretty, young things who bring their sartorial A-game. Then, of course, there is the music. Headliners include High on Fire and JC Brooks (Fri), Bass Drum of Death (Sat) and, on the strongest day, J Mascis and People Under the Stairs (Sun).

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Until Sun May 31

ACTIVATE

Critics' pick

The newest series of events presented by Chicago Loop Alliance transforms mundane, downtown alleys into glowing laser light shows. Each month, the party will move to a different alley in the city, transforming the space for a single evening. The June event will take place in the Chicago Theater alley, incorporating art curated by the King Art Collective and music by The Galaxie and DJ Madrid.

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Various locations throughout Chicago. Until Friday September 18 2015

Fiesta Back of the Yards

Critics' pick

The Back of the Yards neighborhood knows how to throw a party, shutting down three blocks to make room for carnival rides, games, food vendors and live music. Head down to 47th Street and Damen if you want to eat a taco, take a ride on a Ferris wheel and win a gigantic stuffed animal.

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08 Jun 2014

Chicago Tribune Printers Row Lit Fest

Critics' pick

Get your lit fix as the city's historic former bookmaking hub hosts the Midwest's biggest free outdoor ode to literature. Publishers, booksellers, literacy and cultural organizations advocate books and related merchandise in different lanuages and genres, while authors participate in panels and discussion. The kiddies can enjoy special activities at the Lil' Lit Park.

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Until Sun Jun 7

Adults Night Out

Critics' pick

Call the babysitter and leave the kids at home to explore Lincoln Park Zoo after hours. Food and acoholic beverages will be available for purchase.

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Until Fri Aug 21

Lincoln Park Greek Festival

Opa! The St. George Greek Orthodox Church hosts Lincoln Park Greek Festival, celebrating the food, culture and hospitality of ancient and modern Greece. Dig into a gyro or sample some hummus while taking in some of the event's live music lineup.

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08 Jun 2014

Chicago Food Truck Fest

Critics' pick

The summer festival brings together about 20 of the city's most popular food trucks, which will serve pizzas, sandwiches, tacos and more.

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Until Sun Jun 28

Belmont-Sheffield Music Festival

This 30-year-old street festival celebrates Memorial Day with a showcase of regional tribute bands accompanied by plenty of libations and food from local vendors. We're still waiting for the music lineup, but last year's event included Journey and Dave Matthews cover acts.

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Until Mon May 25

57th Street Art Fair

Critics' pick

The oldest juried craft fair in Hyde Park features paintings, sculptures, jewelry, ceramics and more from more than 250 artists.

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Until Sun Jun 7

Andersonville Midsommarfest

Critics' pick

Get ready to dance around the Maypole at Andersonville's annual celebration of its Swedish heritage. The LGBT-friendly event showcases international performers, Nordic cuisine and an array of family activities. Skål!

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Until Sun Jun 14
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