Oak Park, the charming and historically significant village just west of Chicago, is unlike many of the communities that make up Chicagoland. As one of the first villages to roll out a domestic-partnership registry for same-sex couples and enact an ordinance barring employment and housing discrimination based on sexual orientation, Oak Park has long been seen as a diverse, progressive and inclusive communityone that welcomes both residents and visitors of all shapes and sizes to discover its architectural marvels, one-of-a-kind shops, rousing entertainment, and eclectic eateries.
Raise a glass of Illinois wine and sample local gourmet goodies while enjoying live jazz, shopping, and exploring the charming Downtown Oak Park at the annual Uncork Illinois Wine Festival. ( June 3, 2017 )
During the summer, weekends start at Thursday Night Out in Downtown Oak Park. Purchase a booklet with dining tickets and indulge in the wide range of cuisines al fresco while enjoying free entertainment and live music! ( Thursdays from May 25-August 31, 2017 )
The Oak Park Festival Theatre, the oldest professional outdoor theater group in the Midwest, will bring the beloved Macbeth to life this summer with the stunning and colorful 3.6 acre Austin Gardens in downtown Oak Park as the backdrop. ( Misc. dates from June 15-July 22, 2017. )
In honor of Frank Lloyd Wright's 150th Birthday, there's no better year to explore his treasure trove of renowned designs in Oak Park. The Wright Plus Housewalk offers guests an unprecedented look inside Wright-designed private residences that are normally closed to the public. ( May 20, 2017 )
Rev your engines. Berwyn capitalizes on its proximity to Route 66 with the annual Route 66 Car Show, which draws more than 10,000 locals and visitors to the historic road to explore uniquely vintage cars and enjoy live entertainment all day. ( Aug. 26, 2017 )
Sample more than 80 craft brews in the company of family, friends, and the 3,000 animals that populate the sprawling grounds of Brookfield Zoo at the popular annual Zoo Brew. ( Aug. 25-26, 2017 )
Weekly drag shows, riotous karaoke, stand-up comedy, juicy burgers and a renowned Sunday "Diva Brunch" are all found under one wildly entertaining roof at Hamburger Mary's Oak Park.
Sports & Recreation
See Chicagoland from the treetops! Go Ape is a seven-acre course with five breathtaking zip lines, Tarzan swings, rope ladders, and moreall against the picturesque backdrop of the vibrant forest preserves in Cook County.
Like nature? Enter Brookfield. Home to one of the nation's leading zoos, a stretch of the Salt Creek forest preserve, a kayak landing, and a lush bike trail, there's something on tap to quench your thirst for adventure.
Architecture & Museums
A National Historic Landmark and one of the most innovative structures in the world, Frank Lloyd Wright's Unity Temple is currently slated to reopen to the public in July 2017 following its comprehensive $23 million restoration.
Step back in time at the Ernest Hemingway Birthplace, the Victorian Oak Park home with a jaw-dropping wraparound porch where the author spent the first six years of his life. When you're done, explore rare artifacts like early writings, letters, and photos at the Ernest Hemingway Museum.
Arts & Culture
One of the nation's longest-running non-profit arts organizations, the Oak Park Art League offers art education and stunning exhibitions in its historically significant gallery space.
Do you enjoy theater but without the high prices and packed auditoriums in Chicago? Berwyn's 16th Street Theater is the region's leading presenter of intimate and thought-provoking stories.
Sketch comedy? Check. Live jazz? Check. Stirring classical compositions? Check. You'll find all this and more unfold onstage at the Open Door Theater, a 70-seat house that aims to reflect the diversity of the community with its storytelling.
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