Around Illinois: Summer destinations and events

  • Navy Pier is a staple of Chicago summers. With Chicago's famed skyline as the backdrop, a never-ending calendar of events and a variety of attractions and restaurants, visitors of all ages will enjoy a summer day at Navy Pier. During the summer months, fireworks light up the night sky every Wednesday and Saturday.
    For more information, contact Navy Pier (312-595-7437,
  • The Museum of Science and Industry is presenting Harry Potter: The Exhibition, now through September 27, 2009.
    For more information, contact the Museum of Science and Industry (773-753-7100,
  • Music lovers everywhere will converge on Grant Park to enjoy legendary musicians celebrate the heritage of blues at the 25th Annual Chicago Blues Festival, June 12-14. This year, Eddie C. Campbell-70th Birthday Celebration, Bettye LaVette, Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings will headline this year's Chicago Blues Festival. For more information, contact the Chicago Mayor's Office of Special Events (312-744-3315,
  • Jammin' at the Zoo returns with bands on the South Lawn at Lincoln Park Zoo this summer. For more information, contact Lincoln Park Zoo (312-742-2000,
  • Get back to nature at the Chicago Botanic Gardens in Glencoe. The Garden offers 23 formal display gardens, waterways and 385 acres of woods, which can be explored either on foot, or by taking a tram. Special events and activities provide visitors with distinctive educational experiences. For more information, contact the Chicago Botanic Garden (847-835-5440,
  • It's all fun at Six Flags Great America in Gurnee. For information, contact Six Flags Great America and Hurricane Harbor (847-249-4636,
  • The majestic dance and elegant movement of the Tempel Lipizzans have enthralled onlookers for more than 50 years at the Tempel Farm in Wadsworth. At Tempel Farm, visitors have the opportunity to learn the history of Lipizzan horses, how they are trained and see them perform. For more information, contact Tempel Farm (847-623-7272,
  • Enjoy a picnic at Ravinia, located in Highland Park. The music venue offers a variety of spectacular performances all summer long, May 31 through September 14, from classical to jazz, blues, country, rock and more. Visitors can enjoy the performances from the 3,200-seat, open-air covered Pavilion or relax with a picnic in the lawn area. For more information, contact the Ravinia Festival (847-266-5100,,
  • Learn about Abraham Lincoln's life. See the places he lived and worked during a Looking for Lincoln tour in Springfield. For more information, contact Looking For Lincoln (217-782-6817,
  • Nothing says summer like the Illinois State Fair, held August 14-23, in Springfield. For more information, contact the Illinois State Fair (217-782-6661,
  • Peoria's RiverFront has live music, festivals, boating, sports and fireworks. Fun for the whole family. For more information, contact Peoria RiverFront (309-671-5555,
  • Free roaming wallabies and emu are the draws at Niabi Zoo, located in Coal Valley. For information, contact Niabi Zoo (309-799-5107,
  • Quincy Area Blues Fest, July 17 and18, in historic Washington Park. For information, contact the Quincy Area Blues Fest (217-224-7256,
  • A toast to Illinois wine at the Illinois River Wine Festival at Kickapoo Creek Winery in Edwards. For more information, contact Kickapoo Creek Winery (309-264-9000, or Mackinaw Valley Vineyard (309-359-9463,
  • Travel to Metropolis for the 30th Annual Superman Celebration, June 12-15. (800-949-5740,
  • Over Labor Day weekend, check out the 42nd Annual Pioneer City Rodeo and Labor Day Parade in Palestine. For more information, contact Palestine Chamber of Commerce (618-586-2222,
  • Turn up the heat at the International Horseradish Festival in Collinsville, June 6 and 7. For more information, contact the International Horseradish Festival (618-344-2884,
  • Visit an 18th century French fort, Fort de Chartres, located in Prairie du Rocher. Contact Fort de Chartres (618-284-7230,

For more Illinois getaways, visit

Copyright © 2022 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.