Photo: Via Lollapalooza FlickrLollapalooza is this weekend, which means Chicago is about to get an influx of visitors from all over the country hoping to make the most out of their time in the city. And while many ticket holders will be spending every waking minute at Grant Park, we can also hazard a guess that more than a few will want to explore beyond the festival grounds. With that in mind, we've collected some of our favorite activities to take part in over the coming weekend in Chicago. We have all-time classics like the Lincoln Zoo, some of the best Lollapalooza after-parties, and a host of activities that any self-respecting visitor to Chi-town should check off their list. What's more, you don't have to bring any extra moolah to enjoy any of these things — we're talking open bars, no covers, and free entry. Get out of your hotel and leave your wallet behind!
Movies In The Parks
Is there anything better than watching your favorite film under the stars? The Night Out In The Parks initiative has made it a point to organize fun activities for Chicagoans all summer. Weather permitting, movies start at sunset and take place in public parks all across the city. Check out the Movies In The Parks website for more info, or call 312-742-1134 for daily listings.
For those looking for something healthy to snack on (or some vegetables to balance out their beer intake), one of Chicago's many farmers' markets may be the place to go. With markets in a wide variety of neighborhoods, including downtown Chicago, you will have no trouble finding one, should you be so inclined. For more, here are the market listings by day of the week.
Lincoln Park Zoo
Lincoln Park Zoo may be touristy, but hey, you're a tourist — embrace it. The zoo is free every day all year long, and features an amazing array of animals from all over the world.
Lincoln Park Zoo, 2001 North Clark Street, 312-742-2000.
Lincoln Park Conservatory
Situated right next to the Zoo, Lincoln Park Conservatory is also 100% free. If you want to make your day a one-two punch of the entire natural world then you could easily do both in an afternoon.
Lincoln Park Conservatory, 2391 North Stockton Drive, 312-742-7736.
Mixing modern architecture, inventive landscape design, and art, Millenium Park is a great free attraction located in the Loop area of Chicago. At nearly 25 acres, you could spend hours walking the grounds and relaxing.
Millenium Park, 201 E Randolph Street (between North Michigan Avenue and South Columbus Drive).
Brooklyn Vegan Chicago Parties
For free parties — no matter what city you happen to be in — Brooklyn Vegan always does a great job. Lollapalooza weekend should be no different with Friday and Saturday night parties at the Ultra Lounge featuring bands like The Thermals, Aye Nako, Russian Circles, and more. Even better, there's no RSVP. Just show up and have a good time.
Ultra Lounge, 2169 North Milwaukee Avenue (between Tallman Avenue and Rockwell Street); 773-269-2900.
Pabst Blue Ribbon & Old Style Lollapalooza After Party
Sure, pre-parties are fun, but what happens when the festival is finally over? Saturday at 9 p.m., Pabst and Old Style are throwing a huge bash that includes DJ sets by Jenny Lewis and Jimmy Tamborello of the Postal Service and more.
Debonair Social Club, 1575 North Milwaukee Avenue (at North Damen Avenue); 773-227-7990.