Make the most of the fading season and soak up closing museum exhibits, outdoor dining, swimming, seasonal cocktails and more summer-only activities.
1/20With temperatures in the 60s and 70s, it hasn't felt much like summer lately. However, the weather gurus say a burst of heat will return to close out August. So let's start with the basics: Go to the beach! Still, rain or shine, chill or humidity, there are many fleeting drinks, exhibits and happenings to cross off your bucket list before the leaves start dropping. Keep clicking to find more things to do before fall arrives.
2/20Sit on the Parson's patio and sip a negroni slushyThough we've had better fried chicken, we love the outdoor space at this hot gathering spot. All the frozen cocktails are fantastic (especially if you're paying enough attention for the limited edition slushies like the Dark and Stormy), but our favorite will always be the original. When its menu was first announced, Parson's had us at "negroni slushy."
3/20Splash in one of our many public poolsPsst. Our favorite is in Hamlin Park. We just ruined our secret.
4/20Go see "Modern Cartoonist: The Art of Daniel Clowes" at the MCA and "Impressionism, Fashion and Modernity" at the Art InstituteOkay, technically you've got until Oct 13 to catch the Clowes, but time flies. So go now. The AIC's fusion of fashion and art is fantastic, too, with deep cuts from the era.
5/20Get Miko's Italian Ice Yes, Chicago winters are cold, but we'd still eat this in January. Just sayin'.
6/20Photo courtesy ScofflawDrink the pi�a colada at ScofflawScofflaw's summer drink menu has a lot of great cocktails, like the Punch #2, with Scofflaw Old Tom gin, raspberry, lemon and Orleans bitter. But nothing is as summery as the simple but perfect pi�a colada, made with Flor De Cana 4 Year Gold Rum, coconut and pineapple over crushed ice. It's well-balanced, garnished with a pineapple wedge and only $8, so have one (or several) before fall arrives.
7/20Take in a show on the Ravinia lawnNeed a reason to lug a cooler of merlot up to Highland Park? Here are three: Journey (Aug 21), Tony Bennett (Aug 22) and Cheap Trick (Aug 31).
8/20Cool off with a paleta But don't sit in the cart like this idiot. If you're looking for a more adult form of the fruit refreshers, seek out 5 Rabbit's Paletas on draft, a radical radler with low alcohol and surprisingly fresh flavor. We had the guava on tap at Farmhouse with a side of cheese curds.
9/20Kayak in the Chicago River or sail in Lake Michigan You don't need to be Ahab to pilot a small craft. Rent paddleboards or sailboats and let Christopher Cross "Sailing" get stuck in your head all day.
10/20Jim NewberrySee one of the coolest Chicago Jazz Festivals yetThe 35th edition of Jazz Fest is hip and forward thinking, bringing hip-hop collaborator Robert Glasper, fusionist Rudresh Mahanthappa, chill tenor ace Charles Lloyd and percussionist Hamid Drake (pictured), to name a few. It puts Blues Fest to shame, frankly.
11/20Take a hike�in North Park Village Nature Center Doesn't that look like a wonderful place for a walk? It is.
12/20Putt putt the day away at Novelty Golf, a.k.a. the Bunny Hutch This vintage gem on Devon and Lincoln is probably the most challenging miniature golf course I've played (and I've played a lot). Love those pedal-powered mechanical elements. Grab a hot dog at the Bunny Hutch and try to "put it in the clown's mouth." It's mini-golf slang. No, seriously.
13/20Go see two (or three, or four) more music festivals Next up is North Coast, followed by the eagerly anticipated punk blockbuster Riot Fest, which managed to drag the Replacements (well, some of the them) out of retirement. And don't sleep on Neko Case, the Walkmen and Superchunk at the A.V. Fest/Hideout Block Park.
14/20Catch a movie in the park
15/20Pick up fresh local produce at the Green City Market Keep an eye out for what is in season in late summer: melons and cauliflower.
16/20Sip a German beer on the roof of Gene's Sausage Shop
17/20Take in a game at Wrigley Field before the Jumbotron goes inSoon, a 5,700-square-foot screen will sit above the ivy outfield walls of left field.
18/20Touch a stingray, see animals without their skins, explore cave paintings like you're Werner HerzogSeveral fantastic science and nature exhibits are coming to a close. Take inScenes from the Stone Age (through Sept 8), Stingray Touch (through Oct 1), Animals Inside Out (through Sept 2) and Creatures of Light (through Sept 8).
19/20Put a bird on it at Renegade Craft Fair We kid. Birds are so 2009. Octopi and owls are over, too. What creature will be on the cute tote bags and T-shirts of the future? The olinguito, we hope. Shop for art at the popular and reliable RCF, September 7 and 8.
20/20Throw back some mead at the Renaissance FairPlease refrain from using the word "wench."