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Summer Music Festivals in Chicago

Summer Music Festivals in Chicago

Planning on living in Chicago for the summer? Whether you're working downtown or staying in Hyde Park for classes, there's no better time to take advantage of all the city has to offer. While we've all heard of major crowdpleasers like Lollapalooza and the many renowned blues and jazz festivals that happen around town, Chicago features a handful of lesser-known festivals for music lovers whose tastes may range from indie-rock to reggae, to house music and alt-country. Keep scrolling for MODA's comprehensive roundup of Chicago's unconventional summer music scene.

Spring Awakening (June 10-12)

Under the lucky circumstances that you're not in the midst of finishing up your last few exams, Chicago's premier EDM music festival rolls into Jackson Park during the early weeks of June. The lineup has yet to be announced, but tickets are already selling out, so if you're a fan of electronic or dance music in any capacity, this festival is not to be missed! Past acts have included Calvin Harris, Zedd, Tiesto and Diplo.

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Windy City LakeShake Festival (June 17-19)

This year, Chicago's largest country music festival features major names like Lady Antebellum, Tim McGraw and Kasey Musgraves alongside some of the genre's rising stars. One to three day passes can be purchased, so grab yours before they inevitably sell out!

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Mamby on the Beach (July 2-3)

This summer, Oakwood Beach will be transformed into a indie, electronic and hip-hop filled two day event, with an incredible lineup featuring Chromeo, Santigold, Animal Collective, Lupe Fiasco, Chet Faker, Milky Chance and more. Tickets start at $115.

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Chicago Open Air (July 15-17)

Are you a fan of heavy metal music, craft beer and/or something called "gourmet man food?" This modern rock and metal showcase boasts a lineup including Berlin-based band Rammstein in their only U.S. performance of 2016 and heavy metal bands Disturbed and Slipknot among others. The festival will be hosted at the Toyota Park in Bridgeview and you can still snag a single day pass for as cheap as $59.50.

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Reggae Fest Chicago (August 13)

For one day only, venture over to Pilsen's Addams/Medill Park for live reggae music (the lineup will be announced May 6th), food trucks, artisanal and free trade vendors and more. Tickets range from $35-$75 and will go on sale starting May 13th.

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Chicago Jazz Festival (September 3-6) 

Head to the Millennium Park Cultural Center over Labor Day weekend to witness all the biggest names in jazz from around the world in addition to stars of Chicago's own flourishing jazz scene–for free. Whether you prefer to listen to experimental, rock, ethnic or more classic iterations of the timeless genre, the Chicago Jazz Festival has a little something for everyone, and is a tamer alternative to some of the festivals that occur earlier in the summer.

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Interested in checking out any of these festivals or planning on attending something cool we didn't cover? Let us know in the comments below! 

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