The Mix: Bud Billiken Parade, Thirsty Ears Festival and more things to do in and around Chicago Aug. 9-15

The Fest for Beatles Fans also is coming this week, as are shows by Herbie Hancock, Patton Oswalt, Leslie Jones and Beth Bombara

SHARE The Mix: Bud Billiken Parade, Thirsty Ears Festival and more things to do in and around Chicago Aug. 9-15

2018 Bud Billiken Day Parade

Max Herman/For the Sun-Times

Celebrating education

As the summer begins to wind down, it’s time once again for the Bud Billiken Parade. Celebrating 90 years, the South Side parade with education as its foundation kicks off the school year with an impressive lineup of floats, marching bands and dance and drill teams. The parade route ends in Washington Park, where festivities continue with children’s events as well as school supply giveaways, a hiring fair, blood pressure checks, Zumba in the Park and more. The parade begins at 10 a.m. Aug. 10, on Martin Luther King Dr. from 35th to 55th. Visit

Fab Four Fest

In this June 1967 file photo, Paul McCartney (from left), George Harrison, Ringo Starr and John Lennon of The Beatles appear backstage during a break in rehearsals for the live broadcast on the “Our World” program at EMI studios in London. Half a century

The Beatles


When The Fest for Beatles Fans debuted in 1974, it had the enthusiastic support of John Lennon. Now some 43 years later, it’s still going strong. Headliners include drummer Alan White; Jeremy Clyde (of Chad & Jeremy); Wings band members Denny Laine, Laurence Juber and Steve Holley; Beatles historian Mark Lewisohn; former Apple Records manager Ken Mansfield, and the tribute band Liverpool. From 5 p.m.-midnight Aug. 9, noon-midnight Aug. 10 and noon-11 p.m. Aug. 11, Hyatt Regency O’Hare, 9300 W. Bryn Mawr, Rosemont. Tickets: $58-$82, passes available $130-$210. Visit

Broadway in the park


“Mean Girls”

Provided photo

Musical theater fans know a highlight of the summer is the Broadway in Chicago Summer Concert. The free concert features performances from an array of popular Broadway musicals including “Come From Away,” “Hamilton,” “Dear Evan Hansen,” “Frozen,” “Mean Girls,” “My Fair Lady,” “Once on This Island,” “Summer: The Donna Summer Musical,” “The Band’s Visit” and “The Phantom of the Opera.” At 6:15 p.m. Aug. 12, Pritzker Pavilion, Millennium Park, Randolph and Michigan. Visit

Comedians in town


Patton Oswalt (left) and Leslie Jones

Getty Images

Two comedians worth your attention this week: Patton Oswalt and Leslie Jones. Oswalt has moved on from his last stand-up act, which recalled the death of his wife Michelle McNamara, and comes to town with all new material. Catch him at 7 p.m. Aug. 15 and 7 and 9 p.m. Aug. 16 at The Den, 1331 N. Milwaukee. Tickets: $35, $55. Visit And find out what’s on “Saturday Night Live” cast member Leslie Jones’ mind when she performs at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 15 at the Vic Theatre, 3145 N. Sheffield. Tickets: $49. Visit

Jazz master


Herbie Hancock

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Legendary pianist and composer Herbie Hancock has never been afraid of pushing the limits and definitions of jazz and pop. At 79, the Chicago-born artist continues to balance the traditions of jazz with more modern elements. His earlier recordings have become touchstones for younger musicians who often open his shows. This time around it’s tenor saxophonist Kamasi Washington and his band. At 6:30 p.m. Aug. 10, Huntington Bank Pavilion at Northerly Island. Tickets: $54-$479. Visit

Classical in the street


Thirsty Ears Festival

Elliot Mandel

Access Contemporary Music presents its fourth annual Thirsty Ears Festival, Chicago’s only classical music street festival. Highlights include a radio play version of Ben Hecht’s “1,001 Afternoons in Chicago,” a screening of short silent films with a score performed live, Terry Riley’s avant-garde composition “In C” performed on laptops by the Loyola University Technology Ensemble and, for the kids, the Dinder Brothers Family Circus, a toddler jam and an instrument petting zoo. From Aug. 10-11, on Wilson from Hermitage to Ravenswood. Admission is a $10 suggested donation. Visit

Folk/rock mix


Beth Bombara

Nate Burrell

Over a half-dozen albums, St. Louis-based singer-songwriter Beth Bombara, whose vocal style has been compared to Aimee Mann and Jewel, has perfected her mix of vintage folk and electric roots-rock. She’s currently touring behind her new album, “Evergreen,” filled with honest and personal songs written while holed up in a remote cabin in the Rocky Mountains. At 7:30 p.m. Aug. 15, Hey Nonny, 10 S. Vail, Arlington Heights. Tickets: $15-$25. Visit

Questions & answers


J. Keith Van Straaten and Helen Hong

M.C. Valada

The comedic quiz show podcast “Go Fact Yourself” comes to town to record two live shows at the Sleeping Village bar. The podcast is tagged as “a show that makes smart people feel dumb … and then smart again.” Two guests answer questions about arcane topics they claim to know a lot about outside their field of work. Show hosts J. Keith Van Straaten and Helen Hong welcome local broadcasting legend Bill Kurtis and ESPN’s Sarah Spain (9 p.m. Aug. 9) and “Wait, Wait … Don’t Tell Me!” host Peter Sagal (9 p.m. Aug. 10). At Sleeping Village, 3734 W. Belmont. Tickets: $12, $15. Visit

More festival fun

Dance through the day and night at Retro on Roscoe, Aug. 9-11, Roscoe and Damen. Visit Japanese culture is celebrated at Ginza Holiday Festival, Aug. 9-11, Midwest Buddhist Temple, 435 W. Menomonee. Visit Bad Boy Bill, Tito Nieves, Buena Vista Social Club and Tono Rosario are just a few of the performers at Festival Cubano, Aug. 9-11, Riis Park, 6100 W. Fullerton. Visit The Boystown/Lakeview neighborhood celebrates community at North Halsted Market Days, Aug. 10-11, on Halsted between Belmont and Addison. Visit Find fine art at Lincolnshire Art Festival, Aug. 10-11, Milwaukee and Olde Half Day Rd., Lincolnshire. Visit The USO of Illinois celebrates America’s military at Clark After Dark: Aug. 15, Clark and Hubbard. Visit Head north for all things Gaelic at Milwaukee Irish Fest, Aug. 15-18, Maier Park, 200 N. Harbor, Milwaukee. Visit

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