The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

The Student Newspaper of DePaul University

The DePaulia

Summer outdoor music guide to Chicago

Summer music isn’t just about expensive festivals. From street fests to free shows, here’s your guide to getting outside and seeing your favorite band this summer.

*Color-coded key:

Street fest

Music fest

Downtown Sound



Spring Awakening takes place June 12-14. Tickets cost $200-$240 for three day passes. (DePaulia File)
Spring Awakening takes place June 12-14. Tickets cost $200-$240 for three day passes. (DePaulia File)

June 4: The Very Best, Glass Lux

Millennium Park


June 10: Hozier

Millennium Park

$25 lawn, $50-60 seats

June 12-14: Spring Awakening Music Festival

Soldier Field

$200-240 for three days

Spring Awakening kicks off Chicago festival season, as bass heads and dance music fans overtake Soldier Field. Zedd, Diplo and Tiesto headline.

June 17: Mumford and Sons

Montrose Beach


June 19-21: Taste of Randolph Street

900 W. Randolph St.

$10 donation

Yes, technically this is a food festival, but look at that lineup. With Dinosaur Jr., Best Coast, The Dandy Warhols, Lettuce and Emancipator, Taste of Randolph is almost like a mini North Coast or Riot Fest on a budget.

June 20-21: Green Music Fest

Damen and North Avenues

$5 donation

In addition to celebrating eco-consciousness (and a strict no-Styrofoam rule), Green Music Fest looks like it stole some of its headliners from Pitchfork, with acts like Mikal Cronin, Lydia Loveless and Shovels & Rope.

June 20-21: Chicago Pride Festival

Halsted Street and Belmont Avenue

$5 suggested donation

Big Freedia, The Veronicas and Debbie Gibson help to cap off LGBT Pride Month.

June 21: Damien Rice, Iron and Wine

Millennium Park

$25 lawn, $59-70 seats

June 25: Snarky Puppy,  Third Coast Percussion

Millennium Park


June 26: Logan Square Arts Festival

Logan Boulevard and Milwaukee Avenue

$5 suggested donation

Formerly the Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival, the Logan Square Arts Festival will feature a music lineup including Bongripper, On an On and tons of local, near West Side bands. A portion of the proceeds will go toward restoring the neighborhood’s iconic Centennial Monument.

June 27: World’s Largest Block Party

UIC Festival Lot


Maybe $40 is a little steep for a block party, but this one has Young the Giant and Neon Trees. Plus the ticket price includes two drinks, and because it’s 21-and-up, there’s no mettling, snot-nosed kids to ruin it for you.


Pitchfork Music Festival returns to Union Park July 17-19. (Creative Commons)
Pitchfork Music Festival returns to Union Park July 17-19. (Creative Commons)

July 8-10: Taste of Chicago

Grant Park

Limited Free Seating Available,

$15 and up for premium seating

All your teenage dreams are coming true — you can eat some tasty food and then head on over to see the likes of Weezer, Spoon, The Chieftains and Erykah Badu.

July 9: Judah and the Lion

Millennium Park


July 11-12: Mamby on the Beach

Oakwood Beach


Mamby on the Beach, an extremely new summer festival in Chicago, focuses on indie dance and Chicago house music. Pair this with the beach, bands like Empire of the Sun and Phantogram, the overall vibes of the summer in Chicago, and you get a sandy good time.

July 11-12: West Fest

Chicago and Damen Avenues

$5 donation

Nobunny and Murder City Devils play the midsummer, near West Side street fest.

July 13: Matthew Sweet, In Tall Buildings

Millennium Park (Downtown sound)


July 17-19: Pitchfork Music Festival

Union Park

Day Passes $65

Pitchfork is celebrating its 10th anniversary this year. Whether your taste ranges from rock like Iceage, rap like Chance the Rapper, or whatever genre PC Music can be classified as, surely there’s something for everyone.

July 20: Murder by Death

Millennium Park


July 25-26: Wicker Park Fest

Milwaukee Avenue, from North Avenue to Paulina Street

$5 suggested donation

Every year Wicker Park Fest books an incredibly forward-thinking lineup, and with Blonde Redhead, Veruca Salt and Deafheaven, they’ve done it again. Who doesn’t want to hear black metal while perusing artisan goods?


Fans enthusiastically  await rapper Childish Gambino's performance Sunday, August 3 at Lollapalooza. (Courtney Jacquin/The DePaulia)
The sold out Lollapalooza comes to Grant Park July 31-Aug. 2. (Courtney Jacquin/The DePaulia)

July 31 – Aug. 2: Lollapalooza

Grant Park

$250-$275 for three days, sold out

Lollapalooza, an internationally famous music festival that also takes place in Brazil, hosts popular artists amongst a wide span of genres in Chicago every year. This time around, Lollapalooza is hosting older artists like Paul McCartney as well as younger, more modern acts such as Australian psych-rock band Tame Impala.

Aug. 14: Umphrey’s McGee


$45 tickets, $25 lawn

Sept. 4 – 6: North Coast Music Festival

Union Park

$159 for three days

North Coast Music Festival, aptly described as “summer’s last stand,” closes out the season with Widespread Panic and D’Angelo.

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