Summer is in full swing, as we’ve reached the time of year when “warm” characterizes both Chicago’s weather and people’s spirits. The city is abound with festivals, events, and opportunities to get outside and enjoy the sunshine. Located in the heart of downtown, residents of The St. Regis Chicago are fortunate to be surrounded by an abundance of things to do and events in Chicago this July.

Coming back to the city for a second year, the iconic NASCAR Street Race Weekend will be taking over Chicago’s streets from July 6-7. Attendees can expect two days of thrilling racing and a festival with live performances from legendary names like Keith Urban, Lauren Alaina, The Chainsmokers, and The Black Keys. There are several ways to view the unique spectacle from General Admission to VIP Suites, and even from your residence balcony! Visit the NASCAR Chicago site for more information about tickets.

As a central landmark of the city, Millennium Park will be hosting several programs throughout July showcasing Chicago’s rich arts and culture scene. The beloved Millennium Park Film Series will be making its return on July 16 at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion. On Tuesdays from 6:30 – 9:00 p.m., the program will host classic blockbusters like “E.T.” and “Jurassic Park”, and fun for the whole family with “Coco” and “Barbie”. Bring your blankets, lawn chairs, and snacks and partake in this wholesome summer tradition. In conjunction with the films, Millennium Park will also kick off its Summer Music Series. Spend your Monday and Thursday evenings enjoying music from acclaimed local, national, and international artists at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion. You are welcome to bring your own picnic and beverages, or purchase refreshments at the venue. The park also has an offering for classical music enthusiasts with the Grant Park Music Festival. Throughout the month of July, attendees can enjoy free classical concerts at the Pavilion including Beethoven Symphony No. 5, Shostakovich Symphony, Rachmaninov Rhapsody, and even a night dedicated to the famous score of “Star Wars”!

The Shedd Aquarium is continuing its popular midweek summer series Jazzin’ at the Shedd. Offered on Wednesday evenings, guests can listen to Chicago’s top jazz ensembles while strolling the aquarium or taking in the city skyline and catching a stellar view of the Navy Pier Fireworks across the lake. Purchase tickets through the Shedd Aquarium to enjoy this unique experience.

Chicago’s downtown community is hosting its annual summer celebration Sundays on State on July 14. The event has something for everyone with live performances, recreational activities, food and beverage offerings, and shopping. With many cultural activities on deck, festival attendees can watch performances by the Joffrey Ballet, traditional Mexican folkloric dancers, Irish step dancers, and several other troupes. Shoppers can peruse booths featuring crafts from local artists, small businesses, and iconic brands, while foodies can savor a diverse array of cuisines including wood-fired pizzas, beignets, lobster rolls, soul food, German fare, and more! There will also be philanthropic opportunities in store with booths by local nonprofits like Chicago HOPES for Kids and Better Streets Chicago.

Across the river, the annual food festival Taste of River North will be taking place from July 19-21. Just a pleasant walk away, enjoy the best culinary offerings from this dynamic neighborhood alongside live musical performances. Last year’s festival included restaurants Fogo de Chao, Avli, and Pistores, so stay tuned for this year’s lineup of sponsors coming soon!

Also in the River North neighborhood, local fitness studios will come together in a celebration of wellness and movement at the Chicago Fitness Festival. From July 27-28, instructors from Equinox, Barry’s, Pure Barre, SoulCycle, Orangetheory, and more will be teaching a variety of group fitness classes in an amphitheater environment. Participants will have access to cardio, boxing, yoga, and strength classes, and a festival to explore new wellness and lifestyle products, nourishing foods, and fueling beverages. This event presents a great opportunity to connect with a local and like-minded community of health enthusiasts!

While Chicago offers fantastic festivals and events to fill your summer schedule, there are many other ways to enjoy the warm weather all season. Without having to leave the Lakeshore East neighborhood, you can enjoy a beach day or ride bikes along the lakeshore path. Indulge in a refreshing craft cocktail atop one of the many rooftop bars in the area, like Miru’s outdoor terrace on the 11th floor of The St. Regis Chicago Hotel with sweeping views of the Chicago River. Whatever your taste, Chicago has something in store for you this summer. For more information on offerings in Lakeshore East, visit our Lakeshore East Neighborhood page.