Things To Do In Chicago This Week

Not sure what to do in your free time this week? As always we have our top picks of things to do in Chicago in architecture and history. This week we feature a craft beer launch at the Field Museum, a weekend of gospel music, and a bus tour in Oak Park.

1. Hop To It – BEER LAUNCH

The Field Bistro, 1400 S. Lake Shore Dr. – Thursday, June 26th, 6:00pm-11:00pm

$40 members/$45 non-members – reservations required 

The Field Museum has partnered with Two Brothers Brewing Company and Chicago chef, Cleetus Friedman, to create their very own craft beer called Cabinet of Curiosities. During the launch of the Field Museum’s own hopped wonder, meet the collaborators as well as explore the history of beer. Ancient drinking and storage beer vessels from around the world will be on display while Curator of Anthropology, Jim Phillips, discusses why so many different cups, tankards, bowls, pots, and flagons were used throughout history. Plus you get to try Cabinet of Curiosities in your very own, to take home, Cabinet of Curiosity pint glass. The Field Bistro will also provide food pairings during the event.

chicago gospel music festival
Photo credit: City of Chicago

2. Chicago Gospel Music Festival – MUSIC FESTIVAL

Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington St. – Friday, June 27th 11:00am-4:00pm

Ellis Park, 37th & Cottage Grove – Saturday, June 28th-Sunday, June 29th, 11:00am-8:00pm


This weekend marks the 29th year of the Chicago Gospel Music Festival. The festival is presented by the Black McDonald’s Operators Association with free entertainment at the Chicago Cultural Center and in Ellis Park. Ellis Park is in the heart of Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood where gospel music was first commercially recorded and is therefore sometimes considered the birthplace of gospel music. Headliners include Tye Tribbett, Karen Clark Sheard, VaShawn Mitchell, Tasha Cobbs and a special tribute to Dr. Charles G. Hayes. The complete line up can be seen here.

3. Wright Kind of Architecture – BUS TOUR

Chicago History Museum, 1601 N Clark St. – Saturday, June 28th, 1:00pm-5:00pm

$45 members/$55 non-members – reservations required

Historian Al Walavich takes you on a tour of Oak Park this weekend to view beautiful Frank Lloyd Wright architecture built between 1889 and 1913. This engaging tour brings guests into a conversation about the part these buildings played in Wright’s long and storied life.




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Private Tour Coordinator and Tour Guide

There is no shortage of things to discover in Chicago—I love being an urban explorer and uncovering its hidden places. I have an MA in Public History from Loyola University Chicago, and I have worked as a museum educator and kindergarten teacher. My desire to learn new things fuels my passion for educating others, which I get to experience every day as a Chicago tour guide. I live in the northern neighborhood of Rogers Park.

“Our guide Ellen was exceptional and gifted with a great personal touch.”


Tour Guide

Whether you are a first-time visitor or a lifelong resident, the vibrant history and modern majesty of Chicago never ceases to amaze. I’m a graduate of Columbia College with an M.A. in Interdisciplinary Art. I’ve worked for many years as an educator at City Colleges of Chicago. As tour guide at Chicago Detours, I integrate my enthusiasm for culture and architecture with my passion as an educator. West Town/Noble Square area is home for me.

“Jen was a perfect storyteller and kept us spellbound for hours.”


Tour Guide

With our Chicago neighborhoods, vibrant cultural institutions and nearly two centuries of larger-than-life stories, there’s never a dull moment here! I’m a fifth generation Chicagoan and a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis. In addition to guiding tours, I’m a creative writer and amateur genealogist. I also enjoy the city’s dynamic theater scene. You can also read overlooked stories from 19th-century newspapers on my “Second Glance History” blog. I live in River North.


Tour Guide

Chicago is unique as it always evolves into the future while holding on to the past. I’m fascinated by how people latch on to old architecture but happily pave over others. My background is in theater and performance and I’ve been a tour guide here for more than 10 years. Currently I’m finishing my Master’s in Public History at Loyola University because I love to teach the history of this scrappy city. I’m in the Edgewater neighborhood.


Operations Coordinator and Tour Guide

Chicago’s history is so fascinating, you could spend a lifetime uncovering its secrets…I’m willing to give it a try! I have an M.A. in US History from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas and then pursued doctoral studies in Urban History at the University of Illinois at Chicago. I love to learn new aspects of Chicago’s rich history and then share my knowledge as a tour guide with Chicago Detours. I live in Ravenswood.

“Marie was a bubbling fountain of information and contagious enthusiasm.”


Operations Coordinator and Tour Guide

As a fourth generation Chicagoan, I have been living and loving Chicago by bike, on foot, public transit or automobile. I am a graduate of UIC where through the College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs, began my eagerness to understand the nature, history and impacts of urban planning and development. It is incredibly rewarding to give back to this wonderful city by helping out in the office of Chicago Detours. I live in the incredibly diverse neighborhood of Albany Park.
“Sonny was extremely knowledgeable about all things Chi-town.”
Wade K


Content Manager and Tour Guide

Chicago has so many neighborhoods, buildings, and by-ways that it’s hard to go long without seeing something new, or something familiar from a new angle. I studied Cinema History for my M.A. from the University of Chicago. I’ve worked as a culture writer for various publications and as an educator of the humanities at the City Colleges of Chicago. I’m thrilled to share my love of this city’s busy past and unique architectural spaces with Chicago Detours. I live in the Chicago neighborhood of Lincoln Park.

“Alex was fascinating to listen to. He clearly knows his history and it shows.”
Katie K

Amanda Scotese

Executive Director and Tour Guide

I’m an interpreter of personal stories from the past and the city’s landscape. I love to imagine what originally happened inside old unmarked buildings, and what forces have shaped their design. I studied Chicago history, architectural history, and anything Chicago-related through my M.A. in the Humanities at the University of Chicago. My love for stories was enriched by my B.A. in Literature from the University of Michigan. I’ve written travel articles for publications like Rick Steves’ Italy best-selling travel guides, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, and The Chicago Food Encyclopedia. I live in the Chicago neighborhood of West Avondale.
“You can TELL Amanda is hyper-passionate about doing the research and getting the story that nobody’s heard before.”
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