A flurry of festivals in Chicago this weekend

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It seems we’ve hit the peak of summer, because Chicago is exploding with festivals this weekend. Here’s the breakdown.

1) Taste of Chicago (July 8-12 in Grant Park). The free-admission food festival draws thousands every year. See our Taste of Chicago guide for details on musical acts, celebrity chef appearances, maps and parking.

2) Windy City Smokeout (July 10-12 at Grand & the Chicago River).  BBQ, beer and country music is what this festival is all about. Hear some up and coming country artists, including Kacey Musgraves, Chris Young and Lee Brice. Single-day tickets cost $40 and 3-day passes are $99.50.

3) Mamby on the Beach (July 11-12 at Oakwood Beach). This two-day music fest is 18+ and will feature more than 50 bands and DJs including headliners Passion Pit and Empire of the Sun. A single-day pass is $67.50 and a 2-day wristband is $129.

4) Ruido Fest (July 10-12 in Addams/Medill Park). A Latin alternative music fest is sure to liven things up in Pilsen this weekend. Single-day tickets start at $55 and 3-day passes are $155.

5) Roscoe Village Burger Fest (July 11-12 on Belmont between Damen & Oakley). Burger bigwigs from around the city are set to converge on Roscoe Village this weekend. Sample and vote for your favorite Chicago burger. There will also be live music, retail vendors and an activity area for kids. A $10 donation at the entrance is requested.

6) Taste of Lakeview (July 11-12 on Lincoln at Belmont). This festival has the best of the local food, retail and music scenes. You’re asked to pay a $5 donation for admission.

7) Square Roots Festival (July 10-12 on Lincoln between Montrose & Wilson). Another great neighborhood event in Lincoln Square featuring two outdoor stages, two indoor stages, and over 50 acts. There’s also vendors, food and lots of craft beer. Suggested $10 donation for adults ($5 for kids and seniors, $20 for families).

8) West Fest (July 11-12 on Chicago between Damen & Wood). Head to West Town for a unique summer event with live art-making and plenty of music, as well as Kid Fest and Pet Fest. A $5 donation is requested for entry.

9) Bucktown Tree and Garden Walk (July 11-12 starting from Club Lucky, 1824 W Wabansia). This year’s walk features a trolley, petting zoo, live music at Club Lucky, 99 trees and over 60 gardens in the neighborhood. Costs $5 to participate.

10) Artfest Michigan Avenue (July 10-12 on Michigan at the Chicago River). This 3-day fine art festival takes place on the Magnificent Mile at the base of the Tribune Tower. It’s free!

11) Irish American Heritage Festival (July 10-12 at the Irish American Heritage Center). The 30th annual event features Irish food and step dancing performances, among other cultural activities. Tickets for adults start at $15, children ages 4-11 are $5, and kids under 4 are free.

12) Chicago Yacht Club Race to Mackinac (July 11). More than 300 boats leave Chicago every July for a dash to Mackinac Island, 333 miles away. Watch the parade of boats at Navy Pier’s event Ashore Thing (10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.) before they depart for the 107th annual race. Then stick around for family activities and entertainment.

Follow @UrbanAgendaWGN on Twitter for more fun stuff going on around the city. Send us your ideas and photos – they might be featured in a future post. Now get out and enjoy Chicago!

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