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February 2023 events calendar for Chicago

Keep yourself busy in February with the Chicago Auto Show, beer and cider fests, a Taylor Swift-themed pop-up and more.

Emma Krupp
Jeffy Mai
Written by
Emma Krupp
&
Jeffy Mai
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It may be the shortest month of the year, but you'll find that February is still jam-packed with stuff to do in Chicago—especially because some of the city's beloved annual events will be taking place. Grab discounted tickets to acclaimed shows during Chicago Theatre Week or celebrate Valentine's Day in Chicago. Later in the month, strip down to your unmentionables for a good cause during the annual Cupid's Undie Run. Looking for even more stuff to do? Get ready to make the most out of the month of love with our February 2023 events guide.

RECOMMENDED: Events calendar for Chicago in 2023

Featured events in February 2023

  • Bars
  • West Loop

Singles, get ready to shake off your relationship woes at a Taylor Swift-themed pop-up coming to the West Loop next month. Bad Blood, a breakup bar named after the eponymous single from the singer’s album 1989, will launch February 3 at Electric Garden and run through February 26. There will be tarot card readings, photo ops and a Shake It Off wheel that guests can spin for themed cocktails.

  • Restaurants
  • Loop

Open wide! Chicago Restaurant Week is back for its 16th year. More than 330 Chicagoland eateries will offer specially curated prix fixe menus for brunch ($25), lunch ($25) or dinner ($42/$59) between January 20 and February 5. With more than two weeks to chow down, there's plenty of time to make a few reservations and check out some of the best restaurants in Chicago. Look through our top recommendations here.

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  • Things to do
  • Conventions
  • Museum Campus

The Chicago Auto Show—the largest car show in North America—is headed back to McCormick Place for 10 days this February to showcase the latest and greatest developments in the world of cars, trucks, sport utility vehicles and concept cars. Manufacturers trot out their newest models in elaborate exhibitions, often accompanied by interactive installations that allow you to get behind the wheel (whether physically via indoor/outdoor test track or virtually).

  • Theater
  • Loop

Every year, in the coldest depths of the winter, Chicago Theatre Week gives us a great reason to venture outside. The annual event runs from February 16 to 26, taking over stages throughout the city—from major regional hubs like the Goodman Theatre and Broadway in Chicago to intimate spaces such as Redtwist Theatre and Lifeline Theatre. During Chicago Theatre Week, these companies offer tickets priced at $15 or $30 (or sometimes less!). You can browse a complete list of participating shows here, and see our top picks for here.

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  • Bars
  • Streeterville

After a two-year pause due to the pandemic, the region’s largest cider tasting is back at Navy Pier’s Aon Grand Ballroom. The ninth edition of the event will feature nearly 200 ciders, cider cocktails and apple spirits from more than 50 producers. There will be two sessions, 11am-3pm and 4pm-8pm, plus food trucks on site.

  • Things to do
  • Festivals
  • Loop

Layer up and head to Lincoln Square’s 11th annual Winter Brew, taking place outside along Lincoln Avenue. You’ll have over two dozen local craft beers to choose from, including warm beverages and specialty brews tapped for the occasion. There will also be food available for purchase.

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  • Music
  • Folk, country and blues
  • Hyde Park

The 63rd annual University of Chicago Folk Festival is back in person for 2023. Attendees will enjoy seven bands from a variety of genres, including blues, bluegrass, Bulgarian folk, Irish folk and more. Tickets are $30 for general admission, $20 for seniors and $5 for students.

  • Things to do
  • Lake View

This annual tradition challenges participants to jog a chilly mile through Wrigleyville in their skivvies—all in the name of raising money for neurofibromatosis research—before retiring to Slugger's for some scantily-clad drinking. Those who don’t want to run can donate to the cause instead. Cheers to that!

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  • Things to do
  • Rogers Park

Dr. Ricardo Rosenkranz, a Northwestern Hospital/University physician and professor, is back with a new version of his hit production Physician Magician. Blending magic and medicine, he captivates audiences with mesmerizing illusions in an intimate setting. The new show includes several never-before-seen numbers and brings back many signature classics. 

  • Things to do
  • Film events
  • Loop

The 14th edition of the Architecture & Design Film Festival will feature 15 global films that investigate design's impact on the worlds of art, fashion, architecture, urban planning and housing. The films will be shown in the Chicago Architecture Center’s renowned Skyscraper Gallery, which will provide a unique backdrop and experience for guests. Tickets are $20 per film, or $15 for CAC members.

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