Expert Picks

What to Do in Chicago This Week: July 8–14

“Grindr the Opera” / Photo courtesy of Pride Arts Center

This week in Chicago, see an operatic version of Grindr onstage, have s’mores at a comedy show, celebrate Bastille Day in serious style, and visit Millennium Park for the Family Fun Festival.

Photo by Sarah Larson/Courtesy of Parlour Car

Through July 10: Grindr the Opera (An Unauthorized Parody) 
The landscape of gay relationships is changing, and this musical dares to take a hard look at one piece of technology driving the way people are hooking up: Grindr. Four very different gay men meet via Grindr, each seeking a different kind of connection. They are guided by GRINDR, an ancient being fueled by lust, and the results are revelatory, calamitous, and all too relatable. Details: Through July 10 at Pride Arts Center
Tanuja Jagernauth

July 11: Parlour Car [Summer Camp] at Sportsman’s Club 
Local stand-up comedy scene stalwart Parlour Car announced it will be doing a three-week run of shows in July with a summer camp theme. The performances will take place on the spacious back patio of Sportman’s Club, replete with a huge stone fireplace and s’mores after each show. Previous drop-ins at Parlour Car shows include Hannibal Buress, Marc Maron, and Kyle Kinane. Details: July 11, 8:30 p.m.; free
—Matty Ryan

Meg Leary, Bleach, 2012. Photo courtesy of Bert Green Fine Art.

July 11: Poetry Reading at the Art Institute of Chicago 
Gregg Bordowitz is an artist and activist who has made powerful, biting work that’s grappled with the AIDS crisis. Hear him read a selection of his own poetry, then go see his ongoing exhibition.
—Claire Voon

July 13: “Commedia” at Bert Green Fine Art 
It’s hot out, but get in a wintry mood at this exhibition of handmade ceramic snow globes that double as music boxes. Created by artist Meg Leary, who trained as a classical singer, each holds strange objects, like an unraveled cassette tape.
—Claire Voon

A scene from Ms. Blakk for President. / Photo courtesy of Steppenwolf Theatre Company/Facebook

Through July 14: Ms. Blakk for President 
Joan Jett Blakk is a living legend, and this is her story. Meet America’s first drag queen presidential candidate and celebrate a show that brings queerness into the light and asks who we allow to be at the table. This production is a game changer and a must-see! Details: Through July 14 at Steppenwolf Theatre
—Tanuja Jagernauth

July 14: Bastille Day Courtyard Celebration at Margeaux Brasserie 
After you’re done drinking beer and eating hot dogs for the Fourth of July, don’t forget that France’s own Independence Day is just around the corner. And Margeaux Brasserie is celebrating in style with snacks, pastries, oysters, and a whole afternoon of festivities in the chic courtyard of the Waldorf Astoria Chicago. Come hungry and peruse tasting stations stocked with boudin blanc baguettes, bouillabaisse brochettes, ham and Gruyère croissants, and more. To drink, there will be French cocktails, a mobile wine bike (!), beer from Moody Tongue, and champagne sabering “Olympics.” Family-friendly entertainment comes by way of balloon artists, face painters, and a cotton candy machine. Details: July 14, 3–6 p.m.; $25
—Matt Kirouac

Photo courtesy of Margeaux Brasserie

Through August 9: Millennium Park Family Fun Festival 
When school is out for summer, the fun begins, and the Millennium Park Family Fun Festival is a prime example. This free event runs through early August during the week and features all sorts of amazing things for kids, including story time, live music, and lots more. Details: Through August 9, 10 a.m.–2 p.m., at Chase Promenade North
—Samantha Lande

Restaurant Opening of the Week: St. Clair Supper Club 
Surprise! The world-famous Alinea Group pulled a fast one on us and opened a Midwestern supper club–inspired restaurant in the basement of its Fulton Market standby, Roister. As we’ve come to expect from this group, there are two things we know for sure: It’s going to be expensive and it’s going to be worth it. They’re taking casual, Wisconsin-bred items like prime rib, a fish fry, and even a brandy old-fashioned and elevating them to new heights (and prices) in a handsome, clubby dining room, no less.
—Matt Kirouac