Internet, we all know that Chicago is the greatest city in the world. We have excellent opportunities for FREE fun every day, and we are grateful for it. As you spend this week, going to venue to venue, loving every second of all the wonderful amenities our city offers, please take note of how much money you haven’t spent. Please, consider donating that money to relief efforts in Haiti. Chicago is, after all, the City of Big Shoulders, and our neighbor to the south could really use a shoulder right now.
Sunday, January 17
In the mood for a little music, but not sure what, exactly, will groove you? Today you have a choice! The Civic Orchestra of Chicago, at the Symphony Center, will be playing an 85th birthday tribute to Pierre Boulez, along with three works by Webern and the slow movement (Adagio) from Mahler’s Symphony No. 10. Tickets are free, but required, and the performance begins at 3PM.
Classical not your bag? Then lucky for you that Chicago Public Radio is hosting their own tribute! The 2nd Annual Winter Block Party for Chicago’s Hip-Hop Artists takes place at the Victory Gardens Biograph Theatre. The full-day event includes a film screening, live performances, and open mics from 11 am – 6 pm. The Victory Gardens Biograph Theatre is located at 2433 N. Lincoln Avenue.
Monday, January 18
It’s Martin Luther King Day, and what better place to celebrate the life and legacy of Dr. King than at the Chicago History Museum? There will be musical performances by the Chicago Chamber Choir, craft activities and more along with free admission to the museum from 10AM to 2PM.
Tuesday, January 19
Part artist exhibition, part variety show, Tuesday Evenings in the Café is a great way to wind the day down. January’s evnt will be curated by No Coast, a multi-use art studio, consignment store, and performance space dedicated to creating a nurturing, open and collaborative community environment. The Museum of Contemporary Art is free on Tuesday and the event begins at 6PM.
Wednesday, January 20
Spend your lunch hour deepening your appreciation of Chicago’s famous architecture. The next CAF Lunchtime Lecture will explore two groundbreaking Chicago sustainable design projects: the Yannell Net Zero Energy Residence, which produces more energy than it uses and the Shaw Technology and Learning Center, a rehabilitated Sears, Roebuck & Co. power plant in the Lawndale neighborhood, and houses a new sustainable public charter high school. The lecture begins at noon at the Chicago Architecture Foundation.
Thursday, January 21
Community free days are HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY days, and Shedd’s giving us a whole week of them! All original galleries are free, and there will be discounts on passes to the Oceanarium and Fantasea aquatics show. Now, go check out the fish!
Friday, January 22
Some say TGIF, me? I say hooray – its Music Without Borders day! This week’s installment of the popular series features Flamenco music performed by Las Guitarras de España, and will highlight the stunningly beautiful Spanish guitar. The program begins at 12:15 at the Chicago Cultural Center.
Saturday, January 23
It may be hard to believe, but warm days are, in fact, on the horizon. Get a sneak peek at spring at the Lincoln Park Conservatory’s Spring Flower Show. Not only will the annual show will warm your spirit on these cold, dark days, it will also give you a history lesson: The direct descendents of the great Azaleas that once bloomed at the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893 will be on display.
– Shannon Sankstone
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