Festivals & Special Events

Organization Name
Address
James Park (Dodge Ave at Mulford St.)
Phone Number
847-866-2944
Description

Celebrate Evanston, diversity and going back to school! Evanston residents gather for a free commUNITY picnic with free food, games, giveaways and entertainment.

Organization Name
Contact Person
Gregg Skalinder, Music Director
Phone Number
847-869-0223
Description

Coriolis was formed to provide classical choral music enthusiasts the opportunity to sing challenging a cappella compositions in a skilled, dedicated, high quality chamber ensemble. Coriolis performs regularly during the Christmas holiday season at local restaurants and clubs. Coriolis rehearses on Monday evenings from 7:45pm to 9:30pm in Evanston. For additional information or to make arrangements for an audition please use the contact form.

Organization Name
Address
567 West Lake Street, Chicago, IL
60661
Phone Number
312-836-7000
Parent Organization
Description

The spectacular train is an amazing sight – during the daytime and at night. The outside of the six-car train is adorned with oversized garland and seasonal images. Thousands of twinkling lights outline the shape of the train and windows, with even more lights running across the tops of the cars.
Santa and his elves ride the train passing out candy canes and season’s greetings.
Interiors of the cars are decked out with thousands of multi-colored lights, red bows, garland, and red and green overhead lighting. The hand poles are wrapped to look like candy canes.

As the train pulls into each station, Santa waves to the boarding passengers from his sleigh on an open-air flatcar that carries his reindeer and decorated holiday trees.

The Holiday Train will travel all CTA rail lines in November and December as part of regular rail service. Normal CTA fares apply.

Organization Name
Address
Dawes Park, Sheridan Rd. at Church St
Phone Number
847-448-8264
Description

Annual lakefront celebration of the foods, crafts, music and dance of many world cultures; features live music, dance performances, art and craft work of juried artists. Held annually at Dawes Park in late July; sponsored by the city of Evanston.

Public Notes

Note: in 2014, due to construction at the Arrington Lagoon in Dawes Park, the festival will move just north to Centennial Park, Sheridan Road at Church Street. Free parking will still be available just north of the festival grounds (and will be even closer this year!) and free shuttle buses will again be in service.
July 19-20, 2014

Organization Name
Address
Intersection of University Place and Oak Avenue. (behind Hilton Garden Inn, east of East Railroad Ave)
Contact Person
Myra Gorman, Market Manager
Phone Number
847-448-8045
Description

58 vendors of fruit, vegetables, meat, flowers, cheese and bakery items from local and regional farms. Free parking available in the Maple Street Parking Garage. Special events and performances by local musicians.

Downtown Farmers Market:
This market is held every Saturday, from early May through early November. Hours are 7:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Location: Intersection of University Place and Oak Ave. (just east of East Railroad Ave.)
Ridgeville Market:
Wednesdays, early June through mid-October, 3:30 p.m.-7p.m., in the park by the field house at 908 Seward St. (at Ridge Ave.; Program Director Natalie Sallee, 847-869-5640. Pre-order/delivery boxes available weekly.
West End Market:
Saturdays, early June through late October; 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.
Location: Intersection of Church St. and Dodge Ave. (ETHS parking lot)
Indoor Farmer & Artisan Food Market:
Located at the Evanston Ecology Center, 2024 McCormick Blvd., on Saturdays from December through April from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. 40 vendors include local farmers and artisans. Dennis Clarkson, Winter Market manager, 847-864-7328, dclarkson@aol.com.
McGaw YMCA Market
Dates: May 28 through mid-October
Day/Time: Tuesdays, 7am to 1pm
Location: McGaw YMCA, 1000 Grove St.

Address
Main Street, between Ridge Ave. and Asbury Ave., Evanston IL
60201
Contact Person
Evanston Environmental Association
Phone Number
847-448-8256
Description

An annual event, that is part of the “open streets” event Streets Alive, where local organizations present green products, services and ideas to help attendees lead more sustainable lives. Usually held on a Sunday in September.

Address
James Park
1933 Dodge Avenue, Evanston IL
60201
Contact Person
Gerald Daye
Phone Number
847-733-1462
Categories
Description

Held annually on the 4th of July. Features live music, Haitian food, arts, sports and family fun.

Address
225 Greenwood Street, Evanston IL
Phone Number
847-475-3410
Fax
847-475-3599
Categories
Description

An afternoon of holiday cheer at the Dawes House, decked out for the holidays! The event features house tours, crafts for kids, holiday treats and live music in the Great Hall.
In conjunction with the Holiday Open House, the Evanston History Center collects donations of nutritious, non-perishable food (no glass, please) to benefit area residents.

Organization Name
Website Address
Address
Evanston Township High School Auditorium, 1600 Dodge Ave., Evanston IL
60204
Phone Number
(847) 424-7853 or 847-491-0882
Parent Organization
Categories
Description

The Evanston Jazz Festival (EJF) is a non-competitive event that emphasizes performance experience and clinic time for every participating ensemble.

Organization Name
Contact Person
Meredith Wine
Phone Number
847-492-1778
Description

Snowflake is a a fun-filled evening of large and small group activities for middle school students focusing on developing life skills to lead healthy lives. Snowflake is held once a year in Evanston at one of the five District Middle Schools.  It is on a Friday night, starting after school and lasting until about 10 pm.  Transportation is provided to the event from all the middle schools.

Public Notes

Co-sponsored by Peer Services, the Evanston Substance Abuse Council and School District 65.
Open to all Evanston residents in 6th-8th grade

Organization Name
Address
Evanston Symphony Orchestra, PO Box 778, Evanston, IL
60204
Contact Person
Lawrence Eckerling, Music Director
Phone Number
847-864-8804
Parent Organization
Description

Program: North Shore Choral Society
Evanston Dance Ensemble
Evanston Children’s Choir
ETHS A Cappella Choir
Audience Sing-a-Long
Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus
And, a BIG bonus for all kids from 1 to 101 – a visit from Santa and his elves!
Second Sunday in December; Evanston Township High School Auditorium, 1600 Dodge Ave., Evanston, IL 60204

Address
816 Clark Street, Evanston IL USA
60201
Contact Person
Gary Rejebian
Phone Number
847-212-8920
Fax
847-864-5374
Parent Organization
Description

Authentic Armenian food, dancing, music, and games.Over the years, Evanston’ s TASTE OF ARMENIA festival–one of the premiere Armenian picnics in the Chicago area– has become a favorite end-of-summer event for Chicagoans of all ethnic backgrounds.

Late August (the last Sunday before Labor Day weekend). Clark St. between Benson and Sherman. Sponsored by the St. James Armenian Church. Free.

The Evanston Taste of Armenia Festivalserves up charcoal-grilled kebabs and homemade specialties including healthy salads, ‘sarma’ rolls with fresh-picked grape leaves (nothing canned!) Few can resist the bountiful table of our grandmas’ pastries and a steaming cup of Armenian coffee (fortunes told on request!)

Public Notes

The largest annual Armenian gathering in Chicago, Evanston’s Taste of Armenia Festival serves up a full plate of Armenian cuisine, culture and history. All are welcome to come enjoy the day.

Address
1560 Sherman Ave., Evanston, IL
60201
Phone Number
847-866-6319
Description

Live music performances will take place indoors and strolling carolers will make their way throughout downtown.The celebration includes a visit from the Evanston Mayor, Santa Mrs. Claus who will arrive at Fountain Square on an Evanston fire truck.
Sing along to holiday carols with the Second Baptist Church
Bring warm essentials, like socks, gloves, hats, etc., to benefit Hilda’s Place, Connections for the Homeless.
Free parking is available all day in the three main parking garages.

Organization Name
Description

Ranked one of the nation’s 5 best by Country Home Magazine, Evanston’s 4th of July has it all: a parade, playground games, music, and of course the sensational lakefront fireworks. FREE TO ALL. Since its beginning the Evanston 4th of July Celebration has been totally done by volunteers, who raise money and donate time and energy to make our Celebration so special. Each year we find ways to raise the funds to bring in the bands for the parade, and cover the costs of our great fireworks display. Contact us if you want to help.

Organization Name
Categories
Description

The Menorah Lighting is held every holiday season at Fountain Square.
Mayor Elizabeth B. Tisdahl will offer greetings and help in the lighting of the Menorah. The ceremony will celebrate the triumph of light over darkness, good over evil, and freedom of conscience over oppression. Musical entertainment will be provided and refreshments will be served.

Organization Name
Contact Person
Mary Stewart
Phone Number
847-382-5085
Parent Organization
Categories
Description

In The Frosty Air is the current set of holiday concerts by the Lakeside Singers. Their holiday concerts can and often do include classical carols from medieval to modern, holiday favorites in pop, vocal jazz, gospel and Broadway arrangements, the rousing sounds of the Lakeside Singers’ band, and an audience sing-along.
Concert Schedule: Thursday December 17th Harris Theater in Millennium Park. Friday December 18th Wentz Concert Hall, North Central College Naperville.

Public Notes

Tickets for the Harris Theater are available by calling 312-334-7777 or online at www.harristheaterchicago.org. Tickets for Wentz Concert Hall are available by calling 630-637-7469 or online at www.northcentralcollege.edu.

Address
Interfaith Action of Evanston, P.O. Box 1414, Evanston, IL
60204
Phone Number
847-475-1150
Parent Organization
Categories
Description

Sponsored by Interfaith Action of Evanston, this service is designed to bring members of Evanston’s diverse community together to share traditions, blessings and song.  Annual Service features blessings by leaders of local faith communities, music by choirs from different congregations and an address by a guest speaker.
This service is fast becoming a tradition in the Evanston community. All are welcome.

Description

ETHS Choirs sing Holiday music at the Lake Street Church of Evanston. Tickets are $10 purchased at the door only.

Organization Name
Contact Person
Mary Stewart, Executive Director
Phone Number
847-382-5085
Description

Choral ensemble dedicated to bridging the worlds of classical and popular choral music by presenting a wide range of musical styles in dynamic holiday concerts. Evanston location:
Nichols Concert Hall, Music Institute of Chicago, 1490 Chicago Ave., Evanston.

Contact Person
Gloria Wildenradt
Contact Email
Phone Number
847-328-2482
Description

Established in 1929 by a group of mothers from Lincolnwood School, today’s 30 club members come from all over Evanston and a few from nearby suburbs.
Sponsors Evanston Garden Fair, held annually in late May in Independence Park, 2000 Central St.(2 blocks west of Green Bay Road).
Fair offers a great selection of perennials and annuals, including shade-loving plants and native wildflowers, which grow very well in Evanston. Club members also will be available to answer plant and landscaping questions.
Proceeds from the Garden Fair are used to support the civic landscape and beautification projects that member garden clubs undertake throughout Evanston.
Questions about the Garden Fair? Call the Evanston Ecology Center at 847-448-8256

Organization Name
Address
607 Lake Street, Evanston IL
60201
Phone Number
847-864-2181
Fax
847-864-3376
Parent Organization
Description

Annual alternative gift fair; proceeds benefit local not-for-profit organizations. 3rd Sunday in November.

Organization Name
Address
225 Greenwood, Evanston, IL
60201
Phone Number
847-475-3410
Fax
(847) 475-3599
Parent Organization
Description

Since its inception, the Evanston History Center’s house walk has embodied the best of history and architecture. Your support of the house walk benefits the Evanston History Center’s programs and the preservation of Evanston’s history.

Sponsored by the Evanston History Center

Organization Name
Address
P.O. Box 103, Evanston, IL
60204-0103
Contact Person
Dr. Julia Davids, Music Director
Phone Number
773-741-6727
Description

A community chorus performing classical choral works with professional orchestras and soloists. Produces three major concerts each year including a holiday concert.

Address
Northwestern University 633 Clark St., Evanston, IL 60208
Phone Number
(847) 491-3741
Parent Organization
Description

The Northwestern University community has celebrated the life and legacy of Dr. King since 1987 with an expanded special commemoration, including stage events, discussions, lectures, films, music, theater and service projects throughout the week to inspire reflection on Dr. King’s life and legacy, including the continuation of the Alpha Phi Alpha Candlelight Vigil. In January 2013, Northwestern designated Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day as an official University-recognized annual holiday for students, faculty and staff.

Northwestern University Annual Martin Luther King Celebration happens every January on Northwestern’s Evanston Campus.

Organization Name
Address
YWCA Evanston/North Shore 1215 Church Street , Evanston, IL
60201
Contact Person
Trimmy Stamell, Race Director
Contact Email
Phone Number
847-864-8445. ext. 21
Fax
847-864-8498
Description

The Ricky Byrdsong Memorial Race Against Hate was started by Ricky’s wife, Sherialyn, and his friends in memory of the former basketball coach at Northwestern University who was murdered by a racist in 1999. Proceeds benefit the work of the YWCA Evanston/North Shore, especially in areas of violence prevention and racial equity.
5K and 10K runs, a 5K walk and a fun youth mile.

Address
908 Seward Street, Evanston, IL
60202
Contact Person
Natalie Sallee, Program Director
Phone Number
847-869-5640
Fax
847-869-5667
Parent Organization
Description

Ridgeville Community House, 908 Seward Street, Evanston
A Halloween event perfect for the whole family. Features a spine-tingling harvest display, haunting musical performances, and of course, free treats!

Public Notes

Ridgeville is a park district and public agency in south Evanston, Illinois. Named after a historical settlement around present-day Ridge Avenue, Ridgeville is dedicated to enriching the lives of its residents and neighbors through a variety of services.
other ridgeville events include Fall Frenzy, Shakespeare on the Ridge, Summer Concerts

Address
806 Ridge Ave, Evanston, IL
Mailing: 1120 Washington, Evanston, IL 60201
60202
Phone Number
847-864-1185
Parent Organization
Description

The craft fair features handmade items from all over the country as well as an opportunity to have pictures taken with Santa Claus. Homemade breakfast and lunch are served. Christmas trees and greenery are available for purchase. Usually held the first weekend in December.

Organization Name
Address
P.O. Box 5572, Evanston, IL
60204-5572
Phone Number
847-371-2804
Parent Organization
Description

The Talking Pictures Festival presents independent films from around the world mixed with brand new offerings by local filmmakers. The annual festival features animated films, documentaries, fiction films and shorts that entertain, engage and challenge.
The Talking Pictures Festival is organized by Percolator Films. For the festival, Percolator Films has partnered with local businesses and organizations as well as the Evanston Public Library.

Public Notes

Percolator Films engages audiences with high caliber independent films that are challenging, intriguing, and entertaining. True to its name, screenings at the Talking Pictures Festival are often accompanied by discussions with filmmakers, guest speakers, and community groups.
Festival takes place in the spring.
Festival Director: Ines Sommer
Festival Co-Founder & Sponsorships: Kathy Berger
Festival Coordinator: Evan Morehouse
Outreach Coordinator: Stefanie Mabadi
Festival Associates: Anita David, Mayre Press, Sarah Schwartz,Jonathan Vogel, Shuling Yong

Festival Programming and Advisors: Kathy Berger, Mary Filice, Brent Huffman, Ines Sommer, Barbara Sykes

Festival trailer: Jan Sutcliffe www.jansutcliffe.com
Graphic design (print materials): Tyler Moore www.commodoretyler.com

Address
2906 Central St #179, Evanston, IL
60201
Contact Person
Hope Washinushi
Contact Email
Phone Number
(847) 440-4368
Description

Once a year, on the third Saturday in May, YEA! showcases the visual art work and performances of aspiring young Evanston Artists in Raymond Park. It strives to reflect the diversity of the City of Evanston and is committed to celebrate it via the arts. Community initiatives like YEA! teach the value of art and teach our youth to thrive. YEA! provides a forum for exhibition and performance of art for the students of Evanston with the help and support from the public, private schools, their respective art teachers, and PTA’s, the City of Evanston, the business community, individuals and the families of YEA! It explores and develops relationships with organizations whose purpose are compatible with YEA! whose visions support and encourage arts education.

Address
908 Seward Street, Evanston, IL
60202
Contact Person
Natalie Sallee, Program Director
Phone Number
847-869-5640
Description

Celebrate Spring with Ridgeville Park District’s annual Bunny Trail tradition! Candy-filled eggs will be hidden throughout Ridgeville Park awaiting the searching eyes of the neighborhood children! A special prize awaits the lucky person who finds the golden egg and Mr. Bunny will there to start the hunt!

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