Chicago Riverwalk’s Kickoff to Summer Starts May 18th

Nope, no false alarm here – spring has officially sprung in Chicago!

And, to celebrate the sun FINALLY coming out to play, the city’s own Riverwalk is throwing a three-day, all-out extravaganza in May.


Chicgao Riverwalk Summer KickoffRunning May 18th through the 20th, Chicago’s favorite urban park is putting on a summer kickoff event sure to get you outside and enjoying that good weather. The 1.25-mile spread of prime-time, riverfront space will spend the weekend playing host a series of programmed events, music, excursions and tours dedicated to any and all things summer.

And though, true – the Riverwalk is open to the public 365 days of the year – there’s no real denying that right now is when the attraction really shines.


From urban kayaking to the widely acclaimed Chicago architecture tour, the full schedule for the Chicago Riverwalk’s Kickoff to Summer can be found at the City of Chicago website here. But for now, this is what the UrbanMatter team is looking forward to most:

  • Island Party Hut and Boat Charters: Enjoy music, bocce, ping-pong, bags, specialty drinks and great food all weekend. Boat charters will be 15% off all three days.
  • Fireworks and Waterfall Display: Delight in the grand finale display of pyrotechnic waterfalls along the Riverwalk off of the LaSalle Street, Clark Street, Dearborn Street and State Street bridges. May 18th at 8:15pm.
  • FREE Mercury’s Canine Cruise: Yes, a literal doggy cruise. 10:15am on May 19th.
  • Bottomless Mimosa Cruise: Sundays are Fundays when you cruise the Chicago River with a bottomless mimosa in hand. The 90-minute cruise is $35. Soda, wine, water, beer, mixed drinks and food is available for an additional cost. For tickets visit, or call 312.600.8454. May 20th at 10am.
  • Urban Kayaks: Two for one rental special from May 18-20. Tours include: Historic Chicago Tour at 11am and 3pm and Sunset Tour at 6pm.



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