WCL: ''What's on Dec'' w/ Billy Dec September 15-21: Best Events, Concerts, Parties, Games, Fests...

It's officially the last week of summer but don't let that stop you from taking advantage of the few warm days ahead. Billy Dec, CEO of Rockit Ranch Productions, shares his picks of events for the upcoming week, including the Dog Restaurant Week, Circus in the Parks, Social Media week and many more.

Click here for a chance to win tickets to this weekend's Green Tie Ball

''What's on Dec'' w/ Billy Dec September 15-21: Best Events, Concerts, Parties, Games, Fests...

Thanks for checking out my "What's on Dec" segment every Thursday at 9am. Follow me on facebook.com/BillyDec and twitter.com/BillyDec and please give me feedback if you go to these events and/or have any events you'd like me to share in the future!

Social Media Week (9/19-9/23)
Location: Varies
Time: Varies
Price: Free
Details: For the first time ever Chicago is celebrating what's called "Social Media Week" as area businesses and some of the top social media names in Chicago will get together for a week long series of events revolving around every facet of social media. The kick-off party will be at Rockit Bar & Grill. You're invited to celebrate the start of Social Media Week Chicago at Rockit. This is your opportunity to meet, greet, and network with the Social Media Week panelists and participants.
Website: www.billydec.com/blog/chicago-celebrates-social-media-week-for-the-1st-time

World Music Festival Chicago (September 15-22)
Location: Chicago Cultural Center and many other locations
Time: Times vary
Price: Prices vary
Details:The Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events in partnership with the Chicago Office of Tourism and Culture presents the 13th annual World Music Festival: Chicago this September 15 ? 22, 2011. A celebration of music from around the globe continues this year at the city-wide, multi-venue, week-long festival. Presented at area museums, parks, cultural centers, plazas, theaters, clubs, and other venues, events include a combination of free and low-cost ticketed concerts, many of which are family friendly
Website: http://explorechicago.org/city/en/supporting_narrative/events___special_events/special_events/dca_tourism/world_music_festival.html

Dog Restaurant Week (September 16-23)
Location: Various Locations, Check at www.eddieeatsout.com
Time: Depends on restaurant
Price: Cost of your food
Details:Sponsored by Eddie Eats Out from September 16-23. Dog Restaurant Week is a week-long celebration of dining out with your dog. Dog-friendly restaurants, coffee shops and bars all over the US are participating, and we're thrilled to be a part of it.
During the week of September 16-23, if you bring your pooch to our restaurant you'll receive 20% off your bill.
Website: www.eddieeatsout.com

Circus in the Parks 2011 Midnight Circus (Saturday, Sept 17-Sunday, Sept 18)
Location: Welles Park ( 2333 W. Sunnyside Ave, Chicago, IL)
Time: Saturday at 2 & 5 pm and Sunday at 1 & 4 pm
Price: All Tickets $15.00 - Children under the age of 3 are free
Details: Midnight Circus returns with an all new purple blue little Big Top for the expanded 2011 Circus in the Parks Tour. This is a one-of-a-kind family-friendly event has amazed and delighted thousands of Chicagoans with all proceeds going toward local park improvements.
Website: www.circusintheparks.org

Common Threads Associate Board Cookoff (September 15)
Location: Fulton's on the River, 315 North LaSalle Drive, Chicago
Time: 5:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Price: General Admission: $75, VIP: $150
Details: Join the Common Threads Associate Board and enjoy general or VIP admission to the inaugural Common Threads Cook-Off at Fulton's on the River. The event pits top chefs against each other in a competition that hinges on your vote. Chefs will prepare their favorite cookout themed dish and serve it in either a glass, on a bun, in a shell or on a stick.
Website: events.commonthreads.org/eventDetails.aspx?eventId=77

Green Tie Ball (9/17)
Location: Finkl and Sons (2011 North Southport Avenue)
Time: 6:30pm
Price: Tickets starting at $125.00
Details: The legendary Green Tie Ball is coming soon! One of Chicago's most beloved charity events is this year celebrating its 20th anniversary with the fitting theme "A Return to Emerald City." All proceeds from the black tie gala benefit the Expressway Partnership, a public/private program created to transform Chicago roadways into parkways. The event is marked by the involvement of over 50 of Chicago's top restaurants, multiple stages of eclectic entertainment and an exclusive after-party at The Underground Nightclub. The Green Tie Ball was first held in 1992 as a 500-person street party and in recent years has attracted as many as 4,000 attendees.
Website: www.fanfueled.com/Event/Details/436-green-tie-ball-xx

PGA BMW Championship (September 15 - 18)
Location: Cog Hill Golf and Country Club, 12294 Archer Road, Lemont, IL
Time: Gates open at 7am
Price: $45/day
Details: The top 70 players on the PGA TOUR are headed into the crucial phase of the Playoffs. They enter the BMW Championship and at the end of the week at the Cog Hill Golf & Country Club, only 30 pros will still be in the running for the FedExCup. The BMW Championship once again promises to provide thrilling, high-class golf.
Website: www.coghillgolf.com/BMW

Auction for the Creative Arts (Thursday, Sept. 15)
Location: Primitive, 130 N. Jefferson, Chicago
Time: 5:30pm - 9pm
Price: FREE to attend
Details: Come help out the Children's Memorial Hospital's Creative Arts Program by bidding at their auction. The auction will feature 240 items including jewelry, furniture, and paintings. RSVP by calling (312)575-9600 or at auctionforthecreativearts.org.
Website: auctionforthecreativearts.org

The Midwest's Longest Brat (Thursday, Sept 15)
Location: Corner of Adams & Dearborn
Time: 4:00 pm
Price: Free
Details: The Berghoff will attempt to break the Midwest record for the longest brat and unveil a 45 foot brat. Bites of the brat will be sold as a fundraiser for Mercy Home for Boys and Girls.. Our partners include: Highland Bakery, Schmeisser's Meats and Sausage, and Halls Rental.
Website: www.theberghoff.com/public_events/Oktoberfest2011.aspx

Guinness Oyster Festival (Friday, Sept 16 - Saturday Sept 17)
Location: Roscoe Village (Damen & Roscoe)
Time: Friday 6pm-10pm / Saturday 11am- 10pm
Price: Suggested $7.00 entrance donation
Details: Although autumn doesn't officially start until September 23, Chicagoans can usher in the change of seasons at the Oyster Fest on Friday & Saturday, September 16-17. As its name implies, plenty of oysters and great beer--plus mix in a stellar music lineup--will be on the day's menu for the annual fest that will be held 2000 W. Roscoe (at Damen) in Chicago's Roscoe Village neighborhood. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Roscoe Village Chamber of Commerce.
Website: chicagoevents.com/event.cfm?eid=119

Berwyn Oktoberfest (Friday Sept 16 - Saturday Sept 17)
Location: Depot District on both sides of the Metra tracks between Oak Park and Home Avenues | Berwyn, IL
Time: Friday 6pm-11pm, Saturday 12pm-11pm
Price: Free?
Details: Put on your Lederhosen and get your stein ready for this years Berwyn Oktoberfest. Held in the Historic Depot District of Berwyn there is plenty for everyone. Great local music, food and bands playing lively tunes and leading sing-along's of old time drinking songs. The BDC's Historic Depot District Special Events Committee is celebrating its 11th annual Oktoberfest this year. The successful two-day event takes place in the Depot District on both sides of the Metra tracks between Oak Park and Home Avenues. In addition to record attendance of residents and visitors over the two days, it includes lots of food, live performances, amusement rides, crafters, vendors and a beer garden. Also, don't miss the activities for kids' on Saturday from noon to 6:00pm.
Website: www.berwynoktoberfest.com

Fight Gone Bad 6 (September 17)
Location: CrossFit Chicago, 1444 W. Willow, Chicago, IL
Time: 9am - 2pm
Price: Any donation is acceptable
Details: For the 4th consecutive year, CrossFit Chicago will be a proud participant in the annual CrossFit fundraiser, Fight Gone Bad. On one day, thousands of CrossFitters across the globe do the 17 minute workout called Fight Gone Bad to raise money for charity. They encourage everyone to participate with as little as a $1 donation. There are official FGB6 prizes including a T-Shirt ($150 raised), Hoodie ($500 raised), and the top worldwide individual will get an all-expenses paid trip for 2 to the 2012 CrossFit Games!
Website: http://www.crossfitchicago.com/archives/6092

Wisconsin Vs. NIU at Soldier Field (September 17):
Location: Soldier Field, Chicago, IL
Time: 2:30pm
Price: Tickets starting at $70
Details: The Northern Illinois Huskies will host the Wisconsin Badgers on Saturday, September 17, 2011 in the second Soldier Field Showdown. The Huskies are coming off their best season ever with 11-3 record and a win over Fresno State in the Humanitarian Bowl while the Badgers finished 11-2 and earned a trip to the Rose Bowl where they lost to TCU. The parking lots will open 4 hours prior to kick-off (10:30am) for tailgaters.
Website: www.soldierfield.net/content/niu-huskies-vs-wisconsin-badgers

Center Stage Downtown Evanston Block Party (Saturday, Sept 17)
Location: Maple Avenue between Church and Clark
Time: 11am - 9pm
Price: Free
Details: Downtown Evanston will be jumpin' at this musical block party for all ages. In addition to salsa, jazz and blues, Center Stage includes dance lessons, fantastic kids' entertainment and activities courtesy of the Evanston Arts Center and Blick Art Materials, and much more. The Center Stage block party is sponsored by the Downtown Evanston organization.
Website: www.downtownevanston.org/visiting-evanston/annual-events/center-stage-downtown-block-party

Harvest Days (Saturday, Sept 17 - Sunday, Sept 18)
Location: Lincoln Park Zoo
Time: 11am - 2pm
Price: Free
Details: Join us for Harvest Days, September 17 and 18, and dance to a DJ's tunes, feed the cows, watch cow-milking demonstrations, pet the goats, and pick and decorate a pumpkin. Harvest Days, which is proudly sponsored by Lifeway Foods, CLIF Kid and Whole Foods, is free for all ages. We'll see you down on the Farm!
Website: www.lpzoo.org/events/calendar/harvest-days

11th Annual County Fair (Saturday, Sept 17)
Location: Garfield Park Conservatory Grounds, 300 N. Central Park Ave., Chicago, IL
Time: 11 am
Price: $5 admission per person (includes all activities except pony rides; members and children aged 3 and under are free!).
Details:Celebrate the harvest and healthy communities at one of the Garfield Park Conservatory's most popular events. This is a family-oriented day with programs and activities for all ages. Discover agricultural traditions, see the best in urban gardening, and enjoy horticultural exhibits and demonstrations. Children's activities, petting zoo and garden displays highlight the connections between plants, food and American heritage. Children will also love the kid's bounce and slide area, live music, as well as pony rides for $1 each. Adults will enjoy the farmer's market, recipe swap (bring a favorite recipe to share!), a garden harvest showcase, and garden tool sharpening for a small fee (bring your garden tools in need of sharpening!). Hope to see you at Chicago's original urban hoedown.
Website: www.lisc-chicago.org/calendar/2430

12th Annual Englewood Jazz Festival (Saturday, Sept 17)
Location: Hamilton Park
Time: 12pm- 6pm
Price: Free
Details: In partnership with Live the Spirit Residency, the Chicago Park District presents this 12th Annual event curated by Jazz musician Ernest Dawkins. Bring a blanket or lawn chair and this year you can hear The Chicago Afro' Latin Ensemble, Joan Callaso and Larry Banks Trio, the Live the Spirit Big Band with special guest Ari Brown and the George Freeman Express Band. Event happens rain or shine.
Website: englewoodjazzfest.org

NASCAR Geico 400 (September 18)
Location: Chicagoland Speedway, 500 Speedway Blvd, Joliet, IL
Time: 1pm
Price: Tickets start at $123
Details: Chicagoland Speedway, for the second consecutive year, will kick off the "Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup" during the 2012 season on September 18. The race will be celebrating it's 10th year. The Geico Caveman will be honored as the Grand Marshal of a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race and will officially start the 2011 Chase for the NASCAR Sprint Cup.
Website: www.chicagolandspeedway.com/Tickets-Events/Events/2011/GEICO-400.aspx

2011 Ryan's 5k Run/Walk
Location: Century Park, Vernon Hills, IL
Time: 8am - 12pm
Price: Single: $33, Family of three: $66, Family of four: $88, Family of five: $110
Details: Ryan's Run is a family-friendly race event with activities for kids. Runners/walkers will enjoy a scenic 5K run/walk around Big and Little Bear Lakes in Vernon Hills, IL, and families will be able to participate in various activities like a magic show and bounce house!
Website: ryansrun.racebx.com/events/register/4e0b74fd-e3ec-448e-8278-68c1c0a86522

Fitl'S: Brunch & Boogie: Back To Cool (September 18)
Location: Lincoln Hall, 2424 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, IL
Time: 10:15am - 12pm
Price: $10 (Children under 2 are free)
Details: Families in the Loop is proud to welcome their next BRUNCH & BOOGIE: BACK TO COOL. Join them on September 18 from 10:15 am to 12:00 pm as they celebrate the start of school, fall and, of course, all things "cool". They'll be rockin' to soul-shaking music from the much-loved Gooeybots, munching on yummy flavors from local faves, and mingling with a mix of new and old buddies. With kid crafts and grown-up goodies, this event promises fantastic fun for kids and parents alike.
Website: familiesintheloop.com/update/2307/sunday-sept-18-fitl%E2%80%99s-brunch-boogie-back-to-cool

The Vintage Bazaar at The Congress Theater (September 18)
Location: The Congress Theater, 2135 N. Milwaukee, Chicago
Time: 11am - 6pm
Price: $2
Details: The Vintage Bazaar is a roving flea market filled with reasonably priced vintage décor, furniture, clothing, and accessories. On September 18, The Congress Theater will host the flea market and will feature 70+ vendors of vintage decor, furniture, housewares, clothing and accessories. Plus food from local Chicago vendors, beer, wine and cocktails, DJ entertainment by CHIRP, a photobooth and haircuts.
Website: www.thevintagebazaar.com/upcoming-events

Kerry Wood's Strike Zone Celebrity Bowling Tournament & Auction (September 18)
Location: 10pin Bowling Lounge, 330 north state street, Chicago, illinois
Time: 7:30pm - 10pm
Details: Chicago Cubs pitcher Kerry Wood and his wife are once again hosting their Celebrity Bowling Tournament this year. Come enjoy a night of bowling, great food, and lively bidding on amazing auction items Funds raised during the bowling tournament will benefit the Wood Family Foundation, dedicated to improving the lives of children in and around Chicago by raising funds and awareness for children's charities and causes.
Website: www.kerrywoodstrikezone.org

57th Street Children's Book Fair (Sunday, Sept 18)
Location: Hyde Park
Time: 1pm-6pm
Price: Free
Details: 25 SUPER YEARS!: Superheroes, Comics and the Joys of Childhood
Check out a selection of comics and graphic novels, as well as a variety of other super books, activities and entertainment.
Website: 57cbf.org/about.htm

Walk to End Alzheimer's (Sunday, Sept 18)
Location: Montrose Harbor (Simmonds & Montrose)
Time: Registration opens 8 am, walk starts at 10 am
Price: $25 Self- Donation, you can also start or join a team
Details: Walk to End Alzheimer's is the nation's largest event to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer care, support and research. Since 1989, this all age, all-ability walk has mobilized millions to join the fight against Alzheimer's disease, raising more than $347 million for the cause. Events are held annually in the fall in nearly 600 communities nationwide.All Walk to End Alzheimer's donations benefit the Alzheimer's Association, the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer care, support and research. The mission of the Alzheimer's Association is to eliminate Alzheimer's disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health
Website: walktoendalz.kintera.org/faf/home/default.asp?ievent=451781

Backstage Evanston Festival (Sunday, Sept 18)
Location: Ethel M. Barber Theater, 30 Arts Circle Drive Northwestern University Time: 3:30-7pm
Price: $20 admission redeemable for special ticket offers of equal value available ONLY at Backstage Evanston
Details: Evanston's annual festival showcasing 17 local performing arts groups
Website: www.cnscvb.com/special/backstageevanston

Walk for Hope- Women's Cancers Women's Cures (Sunday,Sept 8)
Location: Gallery Park at The Glen which is located on Chestnut between Waukegan Road and Patriot in Glenview, IL
Time: 8:00 am registration opens, 10:00 am 5k Walk Begins, 10:15am 1 mi Walk begins
Price: Adults- $30, Chidren (12 and Under)- $20
Details: All registration fees and donations go directly to City of Hope. City of Hope was founded in 1913 by a handful of working class people who believed everyone deserved good medical care and the chance for a life free from pain and disease. Ninety years later, this dream has evolved into the City of Hope National Medical Center and Beckman Research Institute.Each week, City of Hope spends $2.5 million on research and more than 400 clinical trials are talking place within the City of Hope campus. Their devotion and research is making huge strides in breast cancer treatment and prevention today
Website: nationalevents.cityofhope.org/site/PageNavigator/walk_landing

The French Pastry Experience (Monday, Sept 19)
Location:The French Pastry School (226 W. Jackson Blvd.)
Time: 5-7:30pm
Price: $75.00
This is a private demonstration by a Chef instructor who will demonstrate how to make French pastries, chocolate candies, sugars confection or a baked item. This is a great opportunity to tour our teaching kitchens and to find out more on the different programs we offer.
Website: www.frenchpastryschool.com/come_visit/attend_french_pastry_experience.html

Kouzina (9/21 - 9/23)
Location: National Hellenic Museum (333 S. Halsted, Chicago, IL)
Time: All day Wed/Thurs/Friday, schedule TBD
Price: Ticket Options - 100.00 1-day general admission (Wednesday Evening)
200.00 3-day All-Access Pass (includes Premium Dinner)
150.00 Premium Dinner Only
Details:Join hundreds of food lovers, cultural connoisseurs and socialites to sample world-class food, savor culinary spectacle and preview the new National Hellenic Museum before its official opening at Kouzina, the Museum's three-day benefit showcasing Mediterranean culinary arts and Chicago's trendiest chefs and artisans. Kouzina features a series of events, including:

  • Chef Tasting (Sept. 21) - Sample delicacies from dozens of Chicago's trendiest chefs and timeless favorites, each offering their distinctive twist on Greek and Mediterranean foods paired with the best in Greek wines.
  • Premium Dinner (Sept. 22) - Join Food Network Star David Schneider, the nationally recognized owner/chef of Taxim for a four-course meal paired with Greek wines. During the event the NHM will present Culinary Institute of America Chairman Bill Anton with its inaugural Cultural Icon Award. The award will be presented annually to an individual who significantly preserves or advances Greek culture.
  • Demonstrations - Food and wine presentations, book signings, and cooking demonstrations.
  • Marketplace - Diverse Greek goods including olive oils, cheeses, premium wines and more.
  • Co-chaired by George Bumbaris, Ted Diamantis and David Schneider with honorary chair Diane Kochilas, this year's Kouzina celebration also offers guests an early peek at the all-new National Hellenic Museum - the newest thing in ancient history - before it opens to the public in November. With a design that is contemporary but timeless, the new Greektown anchor serves as an incredible backdrop for the event.
    Website: www.333southhalsted.org/events/kouzina

    The Power of Pets (9/24)
    Location: Hamilton Elementary School
    1650 West Cornelia Avenue
    Time: 10am-2pm
    Price: Dog Owners - Free
    Details: The Power of Pets is focused on spreading the word about the power of dog and is holding a 2k community dog walk. This will encourage pet owners to get outside and have a healthy and active lifestyle. Walking can lower risks of heart disease, reduce blood pressures, and may help combat obesity in both humans and pets. There will be free pet wellness checks, dog yoga, pet caricaturists, arts & crafts, face painting, live music & healthy snacks. Join Power of Pets for a furry friendly day.
    Website: www.facebook.com/PowerofPets