FREECinco de Mayo Festival, May 7–926th St at Kostner Ave (773-868-3010, chicagoevents.com). Fri 6–11pm, Sat noon–11pm, Sun noon–11pm. Go loco during this fete commemorating the Mexican army’s victory at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. Celeb.rate Mexican culture and check out the live music, crafts and Mexican eats.
* FREECeltic Fest Chicago, May 8, 9Millennium Park, N Michigan Ave at Randolph St (explorechicago.org). 11am–9pm. Celtic musicians bust out their bagpipes for this fete. This year’s music includes the Saw Doctors, hailing from Ireland, and Bodega, flying in from Scotland. The Mother’s Day Limerick Contest will make your mama proud. Gentlemen, make sure you’re wearing undies for the Men in Kilts Leg Contest—the judges will check.
*Great American Mutt Show, May 15Morton West High School, 2400 Home Ave, Berwyn (muttshow.com). 10am–5pm; $5, families $10. Today, mutts take center stage. Find out which pet kisses best, performs the most creative tricks and wags his or her tail most vigorously. While you’re there, pick up pet products and information on training.
Chicago Mayfest, May 21–233100 N Ashland Ave (starevents.com/mayfest). Fri 5–10pm; Sat, Sun 10am–10pm; $5. Kick off the festival season (and hopefully hot weather) by checking out what’s under the big-top tent at this event. Flaunt your furry friends during a popular pet parade.
* FREEChicago Turkish Festival, May 23–26Daley Plaza, Washington and Dearborn Sts (chicagoturkishfestival.org). 10am–6pm. Experience Turkey’s heritage, dancing, music and crafts. Instead of your usual sandwich for lunch, try the fest’s selection of Turkish cuisine, including baklava, kababs, orchid ice cream and Turkish cotton candy.
*Chicago Gaelic Park Irish Fest, May 28–31Gaelic Park, 6119 W 147th St, Oak Forest (chicagogaelicpark.org). Fri 3–11pm, Sat, Sun noon–11pm; Mon noon–8pm. $15, kids 12 and under and seniors $12, kids 3 and under free. At this bash, you’ll find step dancers, carnival rides, Irish import stores and six stages of live entertainment that includes headliners Gaelic Storm and Screaming Orphans. Cheer on your favorite team during Gaelic Football and Hurling Games.
*International Mr. Leather Weekend, May 28–31Hyatt Regency Chicago, 151 E Wacker Dr (imrl.com). Fri noon–11pm, Sat 11am–11pm, Sun 11am–9pm, Mon 11am–4pm; bronze package $165, silver package $180, gold package $195. In 1979, this event started as a contest in a bar. Now, the four-day leather extravaganza boasts parties, a Leather Market, the Mr. Bootblack contest (men sexily polishing leather footwear) and, of course, the 32nd annual International Mr. Leather competition, which will be held at the Congress Theater (2135 N Milwaukee Ave).
Summer Camp Music Festival, May 28–30Three Sisters Park, 17189 N Rte 29, Chillicothe (summercampfestival.com). Around $150 for a three-day pass. This downstate fest, located about 140 miles southwest of Chicago, lets you camp and listen to the jammiest bands alive, including the Avett Brothers, moe. and Umphrey’s McGee.
Belmont-Sheffield Music Festival, May 29, 30Sheffield Ave between Belmont Ave and School St (chicagoevents.com). Sat noon–10pm, Sun noon–9pm; $5. This classic beer-and-corn-dog street fest gets you rocking out to cover bands on the North Side.
Randolph Street Market Festival, May 29–Sept 261350 W Randolph St (chicagoantiquemarket.com). Sat 10am–5pm, Sun 10am–4pm; $10, students $5, kids under 12 free, season pass $100. Skip on down to this market for more than 200 vendors in displays including the Chicago Antique Market, the Indie Designer Market and mini markets: the Vinyl Swap Meet, Global Goods Bazaar and Fancy Foods Market. Get your antiques appraised for free during the market’s grand-opening weekend on May 29 and 30. The market takes place the fourth Saturday and Sunday of the month except in June, when it is the third Saturday and Sunday.