5 Things To Do Before Summer Really Ends

emPhoto: Courtesy of Chicago Water Taxi.
We wait all year to ditch the fur coats and uncover the itsy-bitsy, teeny-weeny bikinis, so now that Labor Day is here, it’s only natural to dive into panic mode. As always, we have your backs through these stressful times, so we’ve created the perfect must-do checklist before summer really ends on September 21. All you need are an oversized pair of shades and your Instagram app ready for action — because if it didn’t happen on social media, it didn’t happen at all, right?

1. Enjoy One Last Picnic At Ravinia Festival

Summertime in Chi is all about outdoor music festivals, especially when they are BYOB&F (booze and food). The Highland Park venue is the perfect place to spend those final nights of summer. Just be sure to take the Metra if you plan on partaking with a few libations. The concerts end mid-September, so don't rest on this one for too long.

Ravinia Festival, 200 Ravinia Park Road (in Highland Park); 847-266-5000.


2. Head To Chinatown On A Boat

As much as we don't mind the Red Line, sometimes nothing feels better than the wind flowing through your $35 blown-out hair. So, for only $6 on the weekdays ($7 on the weekends), you can jet from Michigan Avenue straight to Chinatown on a water taxi and be greeted by endless dim sum (hello, Lao Sze Chuan!). Be sure to walk around Chinatown Square afterward for some additional treats and curiosities.

For more information, visit the Chicago Water Taxi website.

3. Take A Spin On The Ferris Wheel At Navy Pier

Sure, it's super-touristy — but you can't deny that some of the most gorgeous views of the city are from the top of this wheel. Stick around afterward for a glass of vino and some entertainment on the pier and remember just how lucky you are to live in such an amazing city.

Navy Pier, 600 East Grand Avenue (at Illinois Street); 312-595-7437.

4. Make your way To Taylor Street for the Night

When you want a classic Chicago evening without having to wait for a table in the West Loop, there is no better street to turn to than Taylor Street in Little Italy. We suggest starting with happy hour and dinner on the patio (enjoy it while you can) at the deliciously irresistible Three Aces (be sure to sit on the patio and order the Bolognese fries), then take a quick walk to the famous Mario’s Italian Lemonade for dessert — you won’t be disappointed.

Three Aces, 1321 West Taylor Street (between Throop and Ada streets); 312-243-1577.

5. Take A Divvy Bike Hot Dog Tour

Of course, we all live in Chicago for the art, fashion, culture, and good food, but let’s not underestimate the city’s number one pull: the Chicago hot dog. Now, with the most recent edition of Divvy bikes (hourly rentable bikes located across the city) — we can experience picturesque views and a hot dog from each famous Chi-town spot. Regardless of what order you choose, be sure to pack your Saturday afternoon with a tour of the following: Hot Doug’s, Superdawg, and Murphy’s Red Hots.

For more information, visit the Divvy website.

More from Chicago

R29 Original Series