The Mix — The Chicago Auto Show (and 5 more cool things to check out this weekend)
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Still haven’t locked down your plans for the weekend? Here are some suggestions sure to fill the bill:
The nation’s largest auto show, that would be the Chicago Auto Show, runs Feb. 13-21 at McCormick Place, 2301 S. Lake Shore Drive. More than 1 million square feet of exhibition space is devoted to this car-lovers’ annual “must see.” otally redesigned for 2016 in what show organizers have deemed a “show floor shakeup,” the new layout at McCormick Place aims to make the experience easier for attendees. Tickets, $7-$12 (children under 6 are free) can be purchased at chicagoautoshow.com/tickets. Read a whole lot more of our coverage of the auto show, including the more realistic “concept cars” you’ll find at this year’s event, here.
REALLY big wheels!
The Monster Jam tour rolls into the Allstate Arena, Feb. 12-15, for its massive (and very loud) points-paying endurance showdown. Headlining the tour this year are eight more of Monster Jam’s fiercest athletes: Grave Digger, Max-D, ZombieSM, Monster Mutt Dalmatian, El Toro Loco, Scooby-Doo, Monster Mutt Rottweiler and New Earth Authority. Tickets, $12-$22, are available at ticketmaster.com.
Ticket sales are off the charts for “Dressing Downton: Changing Fashion for Changing Times,” the glorious exhibit of costumes from the hit PBS series “Downton Abbey,” now making its home at Chicago’s Driehaus Museum, 40 E. Erie. More than 35 costumes are on display, perfectly complemented by the decor of the stately Gold Coast manor. You can also partake in a “Downtown”-style English tea (separate tickets/reservations required) to really set the mood. The exhibit runs through May 8. Tickets can be purchased at driehausmuseum.org. Read more about it (and check out more of the costumes) here.
Say it with flowers
Sunday is Valentine’s Day, and what better way to celebrate with flowers than to check out more than 10,000 of them — orchids to be precise — at the annual Chicago Botanic Garden Orchid Show. Held indoors at the Regenstein Center Greenhouses and Galleries (so you won’t feel the winter chill), you can view seemingly endless varieties of the flowers and even purchase orchids or orchid-related merchandise at the show’s Orchid Marketplace (Saturdays and Sundays only). Mark your calendar for the always-popular Post-Orchid Show Plant Sale on March 17, when you can buy the plants featured in the exhibit. The orchid extravaganza runs Feb. 13-March 13 at the site, 1000 Lake Cook Road, Glencoe. Visit chicagobotanic.org.
Musician Henry Rollins wears many hats: writer, journalist, podcast host, actor, motivational speaker, spoken word artist, comedian and activist. This weekend it’s all about the music at Thalia Hall, 1807 S. Allport, where Rollins headlines concerts on Friday and Saturday nights. Saturday night is sold-out, but some remain for Friday. Tickets start at $26.
‘Pretty’ good time
Looking for a romantic flashback for Valentine’s Day? Here’s an option in just the right color. The high school favorite “Pretty in Pink,” written by John Hughes and directed by Howard Deutch, returns to the big screen at 2 and 7 p.m. Sunday at several local theaters. It marks the 30th anniversary of the teen love story starring Molly Ringwald, Andrew McCarthy and Jon Cryer. Wednesday screenings also are scheduled. For details and tickets, go to www.FathomEvents.com.
“Last Comic Standing” viewers know Clayton English as last season’s winner, but the Atlanta comedian also has drawn attention as Peanut on “Tyler Perry’s House of Payne” and as a ringmaster with the UniverSoul Circus. He headlines Thursday through Sunday at the Improv, 5 Woodfield Rd. in Schaumburg. Reservations: (847) 240-2001 or chicago.improv.com.