Today is the opening ceremony for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio and I have been thinking “what could have been” if Chicago was awarded the bid. Can you imagine how much money we could make over the next three weeks from services like Airbnb? The demand for places to stay would extend far beyond the city, and tourists would have flooded the OPRF area looking for places to eat, shop and lodge. The idea is fun to fantasize about and I know Oak Parkers would have made all worldly travelers feel right at home.
The games are in Brazil and that’s just the way it is. Let’s all let out a collective sigh as we watch with interest over the next few weeks. In the meantime, we are here to provide you with entertainment and ideas on how to spend your weekend in beautiful Oak Park.
Silent Movies on the Porch
Friday at 7:30 p.m.
The Pleasant Home Foundation is hosting its 4th annual festival of silent movies on the porch of the Pleasant Home, 217 Home Avenue. Every Friday night in August, Pleasant Home will feature silent films accompanied by live pianist Thomas Holmes. This week, there will be shorts featuring Georges Méliés and Charlie Chaplin. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Movies begin at 8:15 p.m. A suggested donation of $10 is encouraged for all who attend.
Oak Park Farmers Market
Saturday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.
The Oak Park Farmers Market is now in its 41st annual year. Items for sale include locally grown produce, flowers, bedding plants, honey, cheese, frozen meat, bread, and doughnuts. Cash is the preferred method of payment but credit and debit are available depending on the vendor. The Farmers Market is located in the Pilgrim Congregational Church parking lot, 460 Lake Street.
Oak Park’s First Live Escape Room
If you like solving puzzles and new experiences, you might want to check out Escape Factor Chicago (EFC), which recently opened its doors in Oak Park’s Hemingway District. EFC provides a unique 60-minute experience that allows a group of participants to explore a room filled with puzzles, riddles, and cryptic messages. The goal is to have participants work together in order to solve all of the puzzles before time runs out. EFC is located at 711 South Boulevard. Business hours are 3:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, and 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Pistol Shoot and Dinner Fundraiser (Not Local)
Sunday from 5-7 p.m.
The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) will host the “Pistol Shoot and Dinner Fundraiser” to raise money for the family of John Patterson, a 25-year veteran of the Oak Park Police Department who was shot twice last summer during an attempted robbery. The fundraiser will take place at the VFW Post 2801, 39 E. St. Charles Rd., Villa Park. Tickets for the competitive pistol shoot are $10. Tickets for the dinner are $30. Both sets of tickets will be available for purchase at the door.
Summer Concert Series Finale – Explain Like I’m 5
Sunday from 5:30 to 7 p.m.
The 2016 Battle of the Bands winners, Explain Like I’m 5, will play the last show of the Summer Concert Series at Scoville Park, 800 W. Lake Street. After entering the competition earlier this year, Explain Like I’m 5 has been crowned the kings of music in the OPRF area. The young rockers are sure to put on a good performance as we send off the Summer Concert Series on a positive note.
5th Annual Sculpture Walk
The 5th Annual Oak Park Sculpture Walk features 12 sculptures from various local artists. The sculptures can be viewed as a part of the outdoor exhibit in Mills Park near Pleasant and Home Avenues. The walking tour will be open for public viewing until Sept. 5.
Saturday Fun Run
There will be two “Best Foot Forward” Saturday morning fun runs- six miles at 7:30 a.m., or three miles at 8 a.m. The group will meet at Panera Bread, 7349 Lake St in River Forest. These fun runs are open to runners of all ages, experience, and ability levels.
The Taming of the Shrew at Austin Gardens
Check out Oak Park Festival Theatre’s production of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew: a comedy about a drunk named Christopher Sly who believes himself to be a nobleman. The play will be shown at Austin Gardens, 167 Forest Avenue, Oak Park. Showtimes are Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 7 p.m. Tickets are $29 for general admission, $26 for seniors, $15 for students, children under 12 and dogs are free. To purchase, visit oakparkfestivaltheatre.com.