July is always a busy month in Chicago, and this year is no exception: After slowly ramping up summer programming in May and June, the city is set to roar back to an (almost) normal roster of events starting this month. Chicago's lineup of summer festivals, concerts and cultural events kicks off with the return of country music festival Windy City Smokeout, which promises to bring a whopping 12,500 people a day to the United Center. From there, weekends will be packed with more street fests, outdoor programming and concerts than we've seen in more than a year, from a summer version of the Chicago Auto Show to the sprawling array of food and music at Wicker Park Fest. Plus, get ready for the splashy—and inevitably crowded—return of summer music festivals in Chicago when Lollapalooza heads back to Grant Park at the end of the month. The old normal has arrived again in Chicago, so make the most of it safely with the help of the best events in Chicago this July.
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