Our Pledge To You

Free and Cheap Weekend Guide

Free and cheap things to do in Chicago this weekend: Sept. 21-23

A woman runs along the Bloomingdale Trail (the 606) in the Logan Square neighborhood of Chicago on September 11, 2018. | Colin Boyle/Sun-Times

Summer is officially coming to an end, but there are still plenty of great things to do in the city that won’t cost you a thing.

If something outdoors is calling your name, head to the 606 Trail this weekend, and bring your kids, because five cows will march down the trail in the name of autumn.

Some great eats this weekend, too. The Chicago Food Truck Fest and the World Dumpling Fest are sure to tickle the taste buds.

Cow procession on 606 Trail – Free

Bring your kids to this fun surprise: five live cows walking down the 606 trial. The event celebrates the autumnal equinox. | Getty Images

What: Bring your kids to this fun surprise: five live cows walking down the 606 trial. The event celebrates the autumnal equinox.
When: Saturday, 5:45 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Where: Bloomingdale Trail, starting at Ridgeway.

Chicago Food Truck Fest – Free

What: Over 20 gourmet food trucks, drinks, outdoor games and more are all promised during this year’s Chicago Food Truck Fest. For free admission, guests must order a ticket online.
When: Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Where: LaBagh Woods, 5275 North Cicero Ave, Chicago.

World Dumpling Fest – Free

The World Dumpling Fest is this weekend. | Chicago Cultural Alliance

What: The second annual World Dumpling Fest features diverse dumplings from diverse restaurants all over Chicago.
When: Sunday, 1 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Where: Navy Pier’s Polk Bros Park, 600 East Grand Ave., Chicago.

YAS! Fest – Free

What: This youth arts showcase will be the largest celebration of young artists in Chicago history.
When: Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Where: Millennium Park, 201 East Randolph Street, Chicago.

Lit Crawl – Free

Lit Crawl is this weekend, featuring the The Neo-Futurists’ Tangles & Plaques. | Joe Mazza Brave Lux The Neo-Futurists Theater

What: This annual event features more than 100 artists and writers, plus readings and performances.
When: Saturday, 3 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Where: Various locations in Andersonville and Uptown.

More Sun-Times Guides with things to do

Feel like exploring a new neighborhood this weekend? Check out “The Grid,” a series of Sun-Times neighborhood guides that have the scoop on where to eat, drink and shop. If a farmer’s market is more your speed, check out our Sun-Times 2018 Farmers Market Guide.

Tell us about free and cheap things to do!

We’d love to hear about your suggestions for free and cheap things to do in Chicago. Email us at freeandcheap@suntimes.com and we may include your event in a future story.