Best Things To Do in Chicago with Kids this Spring

Celebrate Holi at Navy Pier this spring in Chicago. Photo by James Richards IV, courtesy of Navy Pier
Celebrate Holi at Navy Pier this spring in Chicago. Photo by James Richards IV, courtesy of Navy Pier

Is it officially spring yet? No one knows for sure if the last snow of the season is officially behind us in Chicago, but we do know that plenty of fun events await as kids approach spring break and the end of the school year. Flower shows are back in full force with Chicago Botanic Gardens showing off its orchids, Garfield Park Conservatory offering up playful plant-themed knock-knock jokes, and Lincoln Park Conservatory standing tall with its pillars of spring. Dinosaurs and other prehistoric animals are another popular theme of Chicago's spring events, with the Field Museum giving kids a chance to Doze with the Dinos, Kid Works Children's Museum hosting a weeklong Dino Works event, and Brookfield Zoo following up its Dinos Everywhere show with an animatronic Ice Age Giants exhibit. And plays and music based on books and fairy tales ignite the minds of kids throughout the city: Chicago Symphony Orchestra presents Jack and the Beanstalk; Chicago Children's Theater is putting on Carmela Full of Wishes based on a recent picture book, and Chicago Kids Theatre acts out modern versions of Rapunzel and the The Ugly Duckling.

We've got ideas for Pi Day, Easter, and Mother's Day. If it's cold over spring break, check out our list of winter day trips near Chicago. If it's warm, you can try out some of our favorite summer day trips. Or skip going out of town together and take a staycation in Chicago with some of our top tourist attractions (who knows, you might catch us there doing a review). 

Hope springs eternal that this will be a great year to have kids in Chicago, so get out there and enjoy it!

Places featured in this article:


Trailside Museum of Natural History

Wonder Works, a Children's Museum

Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago

Millennium Park, Jay Pritzker Pavilion & Great Lawn

DuSable Museum of African American History

Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center

Museum of Contemporary Photography

National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts and Culture

Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art

Learning Express Glen Ellyn

Anderson's Bookshop Naperville

Anderson's Bookshop LaGrange

Fullersburg Woods Nature Center

Herrick Lake Forest Preserve

Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center

Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie

North Branch Trail (south trailhead)

North Park Village Nature Center

Building Blocks Toy Store

Mrs. Murphy's Irish Bistro

North Center Town Square

Lincoln-Belmont Library Branch

Racine Zoological Gardens

Island Party Hut Tiki Bar and Grill

City Winery on the Riverwalk

Lawrence's Fish & Shrimp

South Branch Tavern & Grill

Sophia's House of Pancakes
Midnight Circus in the Parks
Chicago Parks - various times Pick
Free Days at the DuSable Museum of African American History
The DuSable Museum of African American Art - 10:00 AM
Sentrock: The Boy Who Wanted to Fly
Elmhurst Art Museum - 11:00 AM
UniverSoul Circus
Washington Park - various times
Neighborhood Guides
Activity Guides