Chicago Outdoor Visuals

If you have read any of our previous blogs, at this point, we're sure you get that Chicago loves its summers. So much so that we have multiple fests almost every weekend, concerts galore, and attractions that will blow your mind. But what we haven’t covered yet is our visuals, those visuals that you can head out on a weekend or weeknight to enjoy, all with Chicago's iconic skyline as your backdrop. These are not just limited to fireworks, outdoor visuals in Chicago are so much more, and we plan on sharing those unique spots to hit.

Here are some quick tips before we dive in. First up, and this is probably the most important, is to get to each one early. So allow extra time to find the best spot and miss the rush. Also you may want to bring an emergency umbrella, as you never know with Chicago weather. Finally, pack a small cooler with drinks and snacks to enjoy the show. Be warned though, alcohol is not promoted at any of these spots and cops will make you pour out what you have.  So without further ado, here are PPM’s top 4 visuals to enjoy this summer.

Summer Fireworks at Navy Pier

(Wednesdays & Saturdays, May 23 – September 5) Enjoy a dazzling display of fireworks choreographed to music while overlooking Chicago’s magnificent skyline. Navy Pier’s Polk Bros. Park & Dock St. (South Promenade) | Wed 9:30p.m., Sat 10:15p.m |

Movies in the Parks

(June 11 – September 5) Chicago Park District’s series provides outdoor film entertainment in more than 150 neighborhood parks across the city. Families and couples may bring picnic baskets, blankets, and lawn chairs to watch current and classic film favorites. And again this year, the Chicago OnScreen Local Film showcase returns, featuring indie flicks from local artists. Various local parks | Movies begin at dusk |

Theater on the Lake

(Wednesdays – Sundays, June 17 – August 16) This is the 63rd season of Theater on the Lake, the annual summer-long festival that showcases the best of the off-Loop theater community in a park setting. While the historic Theater on the Lake building at Fullerton and Lake Shore Drive is undergoing renovation, the festival will travel to three different park locations across the city. Don't miss it. Locations TBA | Wed – Sat 7:30p.m., Sun 6:30p.m. | $10 |

Millennium Park Summer Film Series

(Tuesdays, June 23 – August 25) Take a seat at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion or spread out a blanket on the Great Lawn to relax and watch your favorite films on a state-of-the-art, 40-foot LED screen. Films include Back to the Future (June 23), Almost Famous (July 28), The Aviator (August 11), Dirty Dancing (August 18), The Breakfast Club (September 1), and more. Millennium Park’s Jay Pritzker Pavilion 7:30p.m. |



Chicago Summer Fun

Why do we all love Chicago so much? Well, it could be the amazing food, or the melting pot of amazing people, maybe the top notch museums and attractions. How about some of the best sports teams around or even the most magnificent skyline this side of the globe. Maybe it’s the diverse and unique neighborhoods that span the best lakefront in the country. Whatever your reason may be, we can all agree that Chicago is one of a kind!

Summers in Chicago are no expectation to its greatness. So much so that we put together a quick list of Chicago's summer play spots. The following is just an easy glance into some fun and enjoyable things to do and try before fall. Just make sure you load up on sunscreen, water, and some cash before you go. If you've got that covered, than you will definitely enjoy at least one thing on our list below. So let's take a look at PPM’s top three things to do in Chicago.

Summer Fun at Pier Park

(Through October) Visit Chicago's lakefront Navy Pier to board the 150-foot-high Ferris wheel. Ride the musical carousel and wave swinger, play the 18-hole miniature golf course, and navigate around Pier Park Lagoon by operating one of eight remote control boats. Navy Pier | During Navy Pier summer operating hours; check website for details | Ticket prices vary |

Back to the Beach

(May 22 – September 7) Chicago offers beach goers a variety of amenities, from great concessions to bike rentals. Beach rules include: swim only when lifeguards are present, obey lifeguards, and follow posted beach rules. From 11a.m. – 7p.m. swimming is allowed unless otherwise posted |


(June 12 – September 7) The Chicago Park District has 26 indoor pools (most are open year-round) and 51 outdoor pools. Check their website for the pools in your area. Hours are from 11a.m. – 7:15p.m., generally, but do vary by location |

PPM Pool Parties

(Throughout July and August) PPM has four unique buildings in the Gold Coast and River North that have pools, and with that you can expect a pool party at each. Join us this year as we dance, swim, and eat the weekend away. Remember all pools are open every day during the summer months. Hope to see you soon! Sat., July 18, 1133 N. Dearborn | Sat., August 8, 1111 N. Dearborn | Sat., August 15 1120 N. LaSalle |