If you’re planning to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, which kicks off Sept. 15 and ends Oct. 15, you might be wondering where you can go in Chicago. The month also includes the celebration of Mexico’s Independence Day, which is Sept. 16. From museums to artwork displays to parades, the Chicago area offers plenty of ways to learn and explore. To find an event near you, consider checking out the following venues.
Festival De La Villita
2600 S. Kostner Ave.
Chicago, IL 60623
Dates: Sept. 6-8, 2013
Kick off Hispanic Heritage Month by heading to Festival de la Villita. The three-day festival includes the 44th annual parade, which begins on Sunday, Sept. 8, 2013, at 3100 W. Albany at noon and proceeds west on 26th St. to Kostner Ave. The two-hour parade is one of the largest in Chicago, so don’t worry about parking and take public transportation to the event. The community-centered event features arts and crafts and food, with many local vendors represented. Other activities include music, dancing, carnival rides and a traveling zoo. Admission is free, but there is a cost for carnival rides.
Claudia Cassidy Theater
Chicago Cultural Center, Second Floor
78 E. Washington St.
Chicago, IL 60602
Dates: Sept. 12 and 14, 2013
Consider immersing yourself in Spanish language and check out the film “The Student,” which will be shown at the Claudia Cassidy Theater in Chicago’s Cultural Center. The film is free and open to the public, and is in Spanish with subtitles. A discussion will also follow the film. The event is co-presented by Cinema Chicago and Consulate General of Mexico in Chicago. If you’d like to catch an additional film, head back to the Chicago Cultural Center on Sept. 18 and 21 for a viewing of “The Last Elvis.”
National Museum Of Mexican Art
1852 W. 19th St.
Chicago, IL 60608
Immerse yourself in a variety of artwork by checking out the National Museum of Mexican Art. Located in Chicago’s Pilsen neighborhood, you can visit the museum and see photographs, folk art and an assortment of other works of art that span more than 3,000 years. There is no shortage of items to see, as the museum has more than 7,000 works of art in its permanent collection. Admission to the museum is free, and it is open to the public. The museum also provides an assortment of programs, including after-school art classes, family-focused events on Sundays and workshops and classes for adults.
Chicago Public Library
400 S. State St.
Chicago, IL 60605
With more than 70 branches, the Chicago Public Library makes it easy to find information on upcoming events as well as books pertaining to Hispanic Heritage Month. The library’s website on Hispanic American culture also includes a list of resources to learn more about Hispanic American history. You can use the library to access a list of books pertaining to a number of specific topics, including Cuban immigration to the United States, Hispanic Americans in Chicago and Mexican American civil rights. Visitors to the website can also get access to specific databases to further research and explore history and biographies.
Hispanic Heritage Month Events At Skokie Public Library
5215 Oakton St.
Skokie, IL 60077
Dates: Sept. 8 and 25, 2013
The Skokie Public Library is hosting two events during Hispanic Heritage Month, giving you plenty of opportunities to add culture to your life. “Sisai: Music of the Andes” includes a live performance of traditional music from the Andes region, and will take place on Sept. 8 at 3 p.m. “Second Generation Stories: Growing up Latino in Chicago” is a documentary that focuses on Latino identity and culture. A discussion is planned for after the film, which will be shown on Sept. 25 at 7 p.m. Both events are free and open to the public.
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