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City of Evanston, 2100 Ridge Avenue Evanston, IL 60201
Evanston is a beautiful city on Lake Michigan. Northwestern University is located there, and the city's over 74,000 residents take pride in the university and the cultural diversity of the town.
The city has a reputation as having some of the best restaurants in the Chicago area and its downtown shopping district is home to dozens of retail outlets and specialty shops. You can browse any several clothing shops such as Active Endeavors, American Apparel, A-1 Tailor, June's Alterations, Hem & Stitch or Ann Taylor Loft. Grab some ice cream or chocolate at Ben & Jerry’s, Cold Stone Creamery or Ethel's Chocolates or buy organic food at Wild Oats Natural Marketplace. There are quite a few home decor shops such as Serapi Oriental Rugs, Northshore Fireplace and Etienne Vintage Home & Lighting. Target, Marshalls and Dollar Days Plus are also popular shopping venues in Evanston. In July the downtown merchants host a huge Summer Sidewalk sale on the 27th through 29th.
The city hosts a number of other spring and summer events. The Farmers' Market will be held on every Saturday from May 19th through November 3rd from 7;30AM to 7:00PM at the intersection of University Place and Oak Ave. The Farmers' Market has been going strong for over 30 years and there are usually more than 30 vendors with fresh fruit, vegetables, baked goods, cheese, flowers and other produce. Free parking will be offered in the Maple Avenue Parking Garage.
- On May 19th at the Farmers' Market is Public Works Day. The city will be educating residents on various subjects like planned construction, recycling, refuse pickup and city Police will be there to register bicycles for free.
- A Mother's Day House Walk is scheduled for May 13th at the Charles Dawes House. Take the opportunity to see six historic homes that are not normally open to the public.
- The Piven Theatre "The Mad Dancers" will perform at the Noyes Cultural Center from May 17th through June 24th. Ticket prices and performances vary.
- The Evanston Animal Shelter will have a Strut for Strays on May 12th from 9:00 to 11:00AM at the Ladd Arboretum. This event supports the shelter and all proceeds go towards helping provide care for the animals there.
- The Evanston Garden Council is having a Garden Fair on May 19th and 20th from 9:00Am to 4:00PM at Independence Park. Come out and enjoy the many plants and flowers on display.
- The Evanston War Veterans Council is sponsoring the annual Memorial Day Event on May 28th at 10:00AM in Fountain Square or Patriots Park. Event details are still being planned, but be sure to attend and lend your support to the veterans.
- The Mitchell Museum of the American Indian will have its 30th anniversary celebration by inviting the public to an admission free open house on May 20th from noon to 4:00PM. There will be cake, family activities, tours and new exhibits.
- "Kiss Me Kate" is being presented by the Light Opera Works on from June 1st through 10th at the Cahn Auditorium. This classic theater comedy is a must see. Tickets are $28.00 and up with age 21 and under half price.
- June 10th is the Church Health Cook-Off at Butler Park from 9:00AM to 3:00PM. The American Cancer Society sponsors this event and it's a great cause to support.
- Casters Last Stand takes place June 16th and 17th from 10:00Am to 9:00PM on Main Street. The Evanston Festival Theater organizes this event that dates back to 1972. The festival features antique dealers, artists, craftspersons, food and entertainment. Over 60,000 people attend this event and it's a regular stop for North Shore festival goers.
- The Fountain Square Arts Festival takes place on June 23rd and 24th in downtown Evanston. The Chamber of Commerce sponsors this event and it is another great display of local artists and craftspeople. Spend the day from 10:00AM to10:00PM.
- The Fourth of July Parade and Fireworks is of course on July 4th. The Parade route starts on Central Street at 2:00PM and the fireworks display begins at dusk on the Lakefront.
- The Attitudes Rising for Success Foundation is holding a 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament at Mason Park on July 7th from 10:00AM to 6:00PM.
- Central Street Arts Fair and Sidewalk Sale will have plenty of bargains from July 12th through 15th. From 10:00AM to 6:00PM along Independence Park, Central and Stewart shoppers can spend the day browsing the merchant displays.
- June 15th and 16th is Northwestern Commencement Weekend. Ceremonies take place on Ryan Field/McGaw Hall and include graduation and many other events.
- The Ethnic Arts Festival will be held on July 21st and 22nd in Dawes Park. Since 1985 the city has celebrated its diversity by decorating the Lakefront with over 100 different national flags. There will be fold dance demonstrations, music, art, crafts and ethnic foods. It's one of Evanston's best festivals.
- Experience an old fashioned ice cream social at the Historical Society Ice Cream Social at Dawes House on July 28th from noon to 4:00PM. Bring the whole family and cool off on a hot summer afternoon.
- The ETHS Class of '97 Reunion is being planned for July 29th from 10:00AM to 5:00PM at either James or Lovelace Park. Details are still being worked out for this event.
- The summer closes out with the Lakeshore Arts Festival in Dawes Park on August 4th and 5th from 11:00AM to 6:00PM. This festival has been celebrated since 1972 and features live classical and jazz music, a family activity area and kid's craft tent, food vendors and an art auction. Free parking will be provided at the Northwestern University Garage as well as a shuttle bus from the garage to the festival.
There is something for everyone in Evanston this summer. All you have to do is show up and be entertained.