There’s more than Lolla in Chicago this August

AirShowFrom the Saturday, Aug. 1, editions of The Daily Journal (Kankakee, Ill.) and The Times (Ottawa, Ill.) …


By Dave Wischnowsky

It’s Lollapalooza weekend in Chicago.

Traditionally, that means hordes of hipsters, soaring temperatures and a blanket of sweltering humidity have rolled into town usually accompanied by an entourage of torrential downpours.

This year looks like it may be no different – although, hopefully the rain gets lost on the way.

But either way, August in Chicago offers much more than just the big music extravaganza in Grant Park. So, if you’re taking a trip to the city this month, here are a few additional options that might be music to your ears.

Saturday & Sunday: Taste of Latin America

Now in its third year, the Taste of Latin America again brings fare both eclectic and the exotic to the Windy City in a culinary celebration of the Southern Hemisphere.

Held from noon to 10 p.m. both today and Sunday on West Armitage Avenue from Central Park Avenue to Avers Street, you’ll find everything from fish panades and empanadas to Brazilian sausage and fried plantains.

For more information, visit

Aug. 7-9: Retro on Roscoe

Back for the 20th year, Retro on Roscoe offers its annual automotive and musical blasts from the past along a tree-lined, six-block stretch in one of Chicago’s coziest and most underrated neighborhoods.

Featuring artisans, vendors, merchants, live music and kids’ activities, Retro on Roscoe is held from 5 to 10 p.m. on Aug. 7 and noon to 10 p.m. on Aug. 8-9. And just outside the fest’s entrance at Damen Avenue and Roscoe Street, you’ll find the star of the show: the annual Classic Car & Motorcycle Show, showcasing more than 50 antique, classic and muscle cars during weekend festival.

For more information, visit

Aug. 8: Bud Billiken Parade

Back in 1929, Chicago Defender newspaper founder Robert S. Abbott conjured up Bud Billiken, a character named after the Billiken, which is the guardian angel of all children, according to Chinese legend.

Abbott proceeded to launch a parade named after his brainchild, which has grown over the decades to become a fixture in Chicago’s African-American community.

Focused on a “Back to School” theme, the Bud Billiken Parade is the second largest in the nation and kicks off this year at 10 a.m. at Martin Luther King Drive and Oakwood Boulevard in the city’s Bronzeville neighborhood and continues south to 55th Street at Washington Park, which serves as the site of a celebratory picnic.

For more information, visit

Aug 8-9: The Great Chicago Fiery Foods Fest

The Great Chicago Fire you know about. The Great Chicago Fiery Foods Fest, you probably do not. But if you’re a fan of spicy fare, I think you’ll probably want to familiarize yourself.

On Aug. 8-9, the Stephen M. Bailey Auditorium at 1340 W. Washington Boulevard will become Ground Zero for fiery foods with dozens of vendors selling and offering samplings of everything from hot sauces and salsas to spicy popcorns, chocolates and more.

For more information, visit

Aug. 15-16: Air & Water Show

A Chicago lakefront fixture since 1959, the Air & Water Show returns Aug. 15-16 featuring the U.S. Navy Blue Angels and the Breitling Jet Team – new this year – plus plenty of other daredevils.

The show is held each day from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. just off of North Avenue Beach, with the announcer based at Castaways Bar & Grill.

For more information, visit

Aug. 22-23: Taste of Greektown
Hellenic pride takes center stage when the Taste of Greektown takes over Halsted Street in the West Loop for a celebration of Mediterranean cuisine from noon to 11 p.m. on Aug. 22-23.
For more information, visit