Apr 11 Mini Taste of Munster, noon-3pm, Community Park Social Center, 8710 Lions Club Dr, Munster. 219.836.7275. munster.org. The best restaurants in Munster come together for this delicious event where attendees will be treated to samples of some of the best dishes Munster has to offer.
Apr 12 Blue Chip Brewfest, 1-3pm VIP session; 1:30-5pm general admission, Blue Chip Casino, Hotel & Spa, 777 Blue Chip Casino, Michigan City. bluechipcasino.com. The fourth annual Blue Chip Brewfest features top microbreweries from around the nation showcasing the unique flavors of different brews.
Apr 13 Save the Dunes First Annual Fundraiser, 4-8pm, Miller Bakery Café, 555 S Lake St, Gary. 219.427.1446. millerbakerycafe.com. Miller Bakery Café and Save the Dunes partner to raise funds and increase membership for Save the Dunes during this first annual fundraiser. The evening features more than 20 boutique wines, an all-you-can-eat buffet, a silent auction, a wine raffle and live music. Proceeds benefit Save the Dunes.
Apr 26 Dark Lord Day, 10am-10pm, Three Floyds Brewing Co. & Brew Pub, 9750 Indiana Pkwy, Munster. 219.922.4425. darklordday.com. Dark Lord Day is the only day of the year to buy Three Floyds Dark Lord Russian Imperial Stout. DLD is the festival at Three Floyds Brewery where participants can meet other beer enthusiasts and sample beers from all over the world. Visitors can buy Dark Lord Stout, eat, listen to live music and have a great time.
Apr 26-27 Waterscape Weekend Garden Pond Expo, 9am-5pm, Lake County Fairgrounds, 889 S Court St, Crown Point. illianagardenpond.org. Wind twirlers, stone bird houses, hot tubs, outdoor fireplaces and yard art are just a few of the many exhibits guests will encounter at this 13th annual event. The day also includes water features, lighting and garden experts, plus educational seminars and workshops.
May 17 Crown Beer Fest, 2-6pm, Lake County Fairgrounds, 889 S Court St, Crown Point. crownbeerfest.com. One general admission tickets allows attendees to sample beers of craft brewers from Indiana, Illinois and surrounding states during this annual event. Attendees must be 21 years or older and present a valid I.D.
May 17-18 Voyageur Rendezvous, 10am-4pm, Grand Kankaee Marsh, 21690 Range Line Rd, Hebron. 219.769.PARK. lakecountyparks.com. During this fun and educational event, visitors will travel back more than 250 years when Northwest Indiana was primarily a marshland. Attendees will learn how merchant traders and early settlers, among others, lived and traded along the Grand Kankakee River. Activities include interactive games for kids, storytelling, a tomahawk throw, a fashion show, food and more.
Through Apr 26 Indoor Farm Market, 11am-3pm Sat, Foundry Hall, 422 Eagle St, South Haven. 269.543.4658. southhaven.org. The South Haven Farmers’ Market moves indoors for the winter with freshly picked produce, baked goods and handmade items.
Apr 24-May 10 Gilmore International Keyboard Festival, throughout West Michigan. 269.342.1166. thegilmore.org. Internationally recognized as America’s most prestigious piano music festival, this biennial festival celebrates its 25th year with performances from some of the most notable and accomplished pianists and keyboard musicians—including John Legend, Ben Folds and Rafal Blechacz—and artists just emerging on the international stage.
Apr 26 Sounds of Saugatuck, throughout Douglas & Saugatuck. 616.886.1162. saugatuck.com. Live music can be heard at various venues during this fun evening. A free shuttle is offered between venues.
May 4-Oct 5 Antiques on the Bluff, 10am-5pm, first Sun of every month, Lake Bluff Park, downtown St. Joseph. 269.985.1111. stjoetoday.com. This annual fair on the shores of Lake Michigan is a premier event for antiquers, featuring vendors from around the Midwest.
May 14 Great Gardens Party, 5:30pm, Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, 1000 E Beltline Ave, NE, Grand Rapids. 888.957.1580. meijergardens.org. This gardens-themed party features a delicious sit-down dinner and a selection of beer and wine, as well as live and silent auction where guests can bid on rare plants, high-quality artwork and unique activities—including impressive trips, VIP experiences, concert tickets and more. This signature spring fundraising event supports the gardens and sculpture park.
May 22-Aug 28 Riverfront Concert Series, 7pm Thu, Riverfront Park on Water St, South Haven. 269.637.0772. south-haven.com. During this summer-long concert series, music lovers can experience a variety of musical performances—including jazz, classical, folk and contemporary—while enjoying views of boats traveling on the river and fantastic sunsets over the lake. Concerts are free to the public and attendees should bring their own lawn chair or blanket, as well as a light coat.
Ongoing Chicago French Market, 7am-7:30pm Mon-Fri, 8:30am-5:30pm Sat, 131 N Clinton, Chicago. 312.575.0306. frenchmarketchicago.com. More than 7,000 people per day visit Chicago’s first and only year-round indoor marketplace for fresh ingredients for cooking at home, delicious grab-and-go options for every meal, meaningful gift items and more from local vendors. Also, through Dec 20: Marché de Noël.
Through Jun 15 Envisioning China—A Festival of Arts and Culture, various locations around the University of Chicago Campus, Chicago. 773.702.2366. arts.uchicago.edu. This five-month festival features more than 40 events and exhibitions related to Chinese cultural history. The diverse selection of art, film, music and performance events are free and open to the public, supporting the festival’s mission of creating a dialogue around Chinese art and heritage.
Apr 11 UNICEF's Message of Hope Gala, 6:30-midnight, Four Seasons Hotel Chicago’s Grand Ballroom, 120 E Delaware Pl, Chicago. 312.222.9121. unicefusa.org. This annual gala features entertainment, exciting live and silent auctions, a raffle and dancing at the After Party. Funds raised benefit The Eliminate Project—a partnership between the U.S. Fund for UNICEF and Kiwanis International to eliminate maternal and neonatal tetanus from the face of the earth by 2015.
Apr 25-26 Bacon Fest, 7-9:30pm Fri, 12:30-3pm 7-9:30pm Sat, UIC Forum, 725 W Roosevelt Rd, Chicago. baconfestchicago.com. Chicago's best chefs concoct and serve bacon dishes, complimented by cocktails, beer and wine. “Bacontrepreneurs” and bacon-friendly brands show off their wares.
May 3 Steppenwolf’s Gala 2014, 6:30pm performance; 7:15pm festivities, Steppenwolf Theatre, 1650 N Halsted, Chicago. 312.654.5632. steppenwolf.org. Members of Steppenwolf’s acclaimed ensemble reunite for this gala, serving as hosts for an exclusive 30-minute performance, a lively cocktail reception and seated dinner, a live auction featuring extraordinary adventures with the artists, a live rock concert and after-hours cocktails with a late-night DJ set. The gala benefits the theater, allowing it to produce ambitious plays and impact a young audience through educational programs.
May 10 American Beer Classic, session 1: 1-5pm; session 2: 7-11pm, Soldier Field, 1410 S Museum Campus Dr, Chicago. Americanbeerclassic.com. Beer enthusiasts can sample beers from a diverse lineup of the country's finest breweries and mingle with fellow beer lovers. The menu includes ballpark classics—hot dogs, burgers, pretzels and more.
May 13 A Taste for the Arts—Annual Gala, Harris Theater at Millennium Park, 205 E Randolph, Chicago. atasteforthearts.org. Delight in the talents of the Chicago's most promising young artists and in the innovative tastes of the city's most prominent chefs at this annual gala and performance, a special evening to support the Chicago Academy for the Arts.
Through May 10 Embroidered Archetypes, Lubeznik Center for the Arts, 101 W Second St, Michigan City. 219.874.4900. lubeznikcenter.org. Twenty-two embroidered images depict the symbols of the tarot. Each panel by Laurel Izard is small and highly detailed. Each uses embroidered colors to create dramatic texture and color combinations. Also, through May 10: What is Left Unspoken; May 16-Jul 26: Material Possessions and Ignorance with Wings by Michael Bill Smith.
Through May 18 2014 Thesis Exhibition by BFA and MFA Candidates, The Snite Museum of Art, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame. 574.631.5466. sniteartmuseum.nd.edu. A culmination of the projects of students graduating with a BFA or MFA degree from the Notre Dame Department of Art, Art History and Design, this exhibit features a broad range of works—from industrial, graphic design and complex multi-media installations to more traditional art forms, such as paintings, photographs, prints, ceramics and sculpture.
Opens Apr The Banquet, Southern Shore Art Association, 724 Franklin St, Michigan City. 219.369.9028. southernshoreartassociation. During the month of April, long custom tables will feature “tableware” from a multitude of artists in a variety of media. Table arrangements will include plates, bowls and goblets created from wood, ceramics, alabaster, textile and glass, by gallery and regional artists, with small paintings and photographs as placemats. Also, May: Art in Good Taste.
Apr 16-May 11 Valparaiso University Art Student Exhibition, Brauer Museum of Art, Valparaiso University Center for the Arts, 1709 Chapel Dr, Valparaiso. 219.464.5365. valpo.edu/artmuseum. Valparaiso University studio art students exhibit their artwork, which has been selected by their professors. Also, through May 11: Valparaiso University Art Faculty Exhibition, and Classical and Popular School Japanese Paintings from the Walter and Dörte Simmons Collection.
Apr 27-May 25 40th Annual Tri-County Junior/Senior High School Art Show, Center for Visual and Performing Arts Atrium Gallery, 1040 Ridge Rd, Munster. 219.836.1839. southshoreartsonline.org. Student artwork submitted by their teachers is on display for a chance to win monetary prizes. Students attend schools in Lake, Porter and LaPorte counties in Indiana and south suburban Cook County, Illinois.
Through Apr 16 Inspiring Future Artists, Box Factory for the Arts, 1101 Broad St, St. Joseph. 269.983.3688. boxfactoryforthearts.org. Artwork by local middle and high school students will be on display in all galleries.
Through Apr 30 Butterflies are Blooming, Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, 1000 E Beltline Ave, NE, Grand Rapids. 888.957.1580. meijergardens.org. The butterflies return to Frederick Meijer Gardens once again. The largest temporary tropical butterfly exhibition in the nation offers guests the chance to mingle with butterflies from all over the world flying freely in the Tropical Conservatory. Also, through Apr 27: Committed to Paper—Master Drawings and Prints by Sculptors; May 10-11: Michigan All-State Bonsai Show; May 23-Aug 17: David Nash: From Kew Gardens to Meijer Gardens.
Apr 12-May 18 High School Area Show, Kalamazoo Institute of Arts, 314 S Park St, Kalamazoo. 269.349.7775. kiarts.org. This annual juried exhibition features work by artists 18 and younger in grades 9-12 in local counties. More than 100 pieces of art are featured in a variety of media—glass, 2-D, 3-D, video, ceramics, metal, jewelry and more. Also, throughMay 4: Environmental Impact; through May 25: Inside Steinway—Photographs by Christopher Payne; through Jul 5: Cultural Encounters—India, Burman and Tibet; Mar 8-30: Young Artists of Kalamazoo County; May 17-Aug 16: West Michigan Area Show.
Apr 25-Jun 22 Krasl Art Center Biennal Sculpture Invitational and Ken Thompson, Krasl Art Center, 707 Lake Blvd, St. Joseph. 269.983.0271. krasl.org. A selection of 25 sculptures by some of the finest and most creative sculptors working today grace the KAC grounds and other nearby locales. Working models and sketches are on display indoors, plus a solo show by 2012 Purchase Award winner, Michigan sculptor Ken Thompson. Also, through Apr 20: Heather Parrish and The Harmon and Harriet Kelly Collection of African American Art—Work on Paper.
Apr 25-Jun 1 Impressions of South Haven, South Haven Center for the Arts, 600 Phoenix St, South Haven. 269.637.1041. southhavenarts.org. Young budding artists from local elementary schools showcase their talents during this exhibit. Also, through Apr 20: Building Blocks.
May 2-Jun 15 Northern Indiana Artists—Curated Exhibit, Fernwood Botanical Garden and Nature Preserve, 13988 Range Line Rd, Niles. 269.695.6491. fernwoodbotanical.org. This exhibit by the Northern Indiana Artists group features their latest work. Also, through Apr 27: Sally Hughes—My Garden through the Seasons.
Through Sept 1 National Geographic Presents—Earth Explorers, Museum of Science and Industry, 57th St and Lake Shore Dr, Chicago. 773.947.3133. msichicago.org. This exhibit journeys to the wildest places on the globe, highlighting the Earth's spectacular eco-zones—polar regions, oceans, rain forests, mountains, caves, and savannas. Also, through May 4: Treasures of the Walt Disney Archives; through Sept 1: 80 at 80.
Through Jan 4 The Machine Inside—Biomechanics, The Field Museum, 1400 S Lake Shore Dr, Chicago. 312.922.9410. fieldmuseum.org. The marvels of natural engineering are on display during this exhibit, which explores how living things—including humans—are machines built to survive, move and discover. Also, through Sept 7: Opening the Vaults—Wonders of the 1983 World’s Fair, through Feb 1: Before the Dinosaurs—Tracking the Reptiles of Pangaea; through Jun 7, 2015: Bunky Echo-Hawk—Modern Warrior.
Opens Apr 18 Modern Masters Return, The Art Institute of Chicago, 111 S Michigan Ave, Chicago. 312.629.6635. artic.edu/aic. This renowned collection of modern European painting and sculpture returns to its home on the third floor of the Modern Wing with more than 100 works by artists such as Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Marc Chagall, Constantin Brâncusi and Salvador Dalí. Also, through Apr 13: Amar Kanwar—The Lightning Testimonies and Isaac Julien—The Long Road to Mazatlán; through Apr 20: Ugo Rondinone—we run through the desert on burning feet, all of us are glowing our faces look twisted; through Apr 25: Africa—The Modern Eye; through Apr 27: Renior's True Colors—Science Solves a Mystery;through May 4: Iterations—John Ronan's Poetry Foundation; through May 11: Christopher Wool; through May 18: Christopher Williams—The Production Line of Happiness and Nilima Sheikh—Each Night Put Kashmir in Your Dreams; through Jun 1: Dayanita Singh; through Jun 15: The Thrill of the Chase—Drawings for the Harry B. and Bessie K. Braude Memorial Collection; through Jun 16: Hired Hand; through Jul 27: When the Greeks Ruled Egypt; May 14-Oct 5: Nairy Baghramiam—French Curve/Slip of the Tongue.
May 3-Oct 5 Unbound—Contemporary Art After Frida Kahlo, Museum of Contemporary Art, 220 E Chicago Ave, Chicago. 312.280.2660. mcachicago.org. Stemming from the artist's interest in language and poetry, this exhibition is organized like a poem and divided into several sections or stanzas, with each section featuring works in several media. Pieces on display range from sculpture and ceramics to drawing, textiles and painting. Also, through Apr 13: CITY SELF; through Apr 15: Lilli Carré; through Apr 20: Amanda Ross-Ho; through May 18: William J. O'Brien; through Jun 15: Warhol and Marisol; through Jul 13: Alexander Calder; Apr 12-Aug 3: Isa Genzken—Retrospective; Apr 29-Sept 16: Zachary Cahill.