Jumpstart 2019 With Culture, Theater & Comedy

Thing to do in Chicago this January

JANUARY 2019 — Resolutions or not, your new year is here, and if January is any indication of what’s to come, you’re in for a full year of culture, concerts, tributes, and new traditions. And it all starts this month. Here’s what’s going on around town:

Buddy Guy at Buddy Guy’s Legends
What: The man, the legend (and the opening act to the Chicago Athletic Association hotel’s ribbon cutting back in 2015), Buddy Guy is back in down all month long. January in Chicago is Buddy Guy season, and his month-long residency, pairing Guy with a different supporting act each night, including young Mississippi guitarist Kingfish and CTA bus driver Toronzo Cannon.
When: Thursday, January 3 – Sunday, January 27
Where: Buddy Guy’s Legends (700 S. Wabash Ave.)
Cost: $55

The Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival
What: The Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival gathers writers, performers, and comedy lovers together to create and celebrate in the comedy capital of Chicago; the sketch fest is not the largest in the world, hosting over 180 groups from around the globe, performing nearly 200 shows over 8 days. With the festival now in its 18th year and averaging 20 shows a night, over 11,000 patrons annually brave the Chicago winter to enjoy this comedy oasis.
When: Thursday, January 10 – Sunday, January 20
Where: Stage 773 (1225 W. Belmont Ave.)
Cost: $15–$60, festival pass $225

Founder’s Comedy, Presented by The Lincoln Lodge 
What: Founder’s Comedy returns for a night of stand up after its series debut at the Chicago Athletic Association hotel last year, put on in partnership with The Lincoln Lodge – the nation’s longest running, independent stand up comedy show. Get a taste of Chicago’s hilarious local talent in the hotel’s historic Stagg Court transformed into a classic comedy club, a Chicago attraction hard to come by outside the neighborhoods.
When: Saturday, January 12
Where: Stagg Court, Chicago Athletic Association hotel (12 S. Michigan Ave.)
Cost: $15

Roller Dance Fitness in Stagg Court 
What: The first in a monthly fitness series at the Chicago Athletic Association hotel, Roller Dance Fitness is your chance to put your best skate forward to start 2019. Led by pro skater Elizabeth Perez, Roller Dance Fitness offers skaters of all levels a groovy 90-minute workout that will cover proper skating skills while focusing on a classic roller dance move, inviting participants to perform them with confidence and rhythm. Solo, partner, and even group spins galore.
When: Sunday, January 13 – Monday, January 14
Where: Stagg Court, Chicago Athletic Association hotel (12 S. Michigan Ave.)
Cost: $20

Martin Luther King Jr. Tribute Concert
What: Honor the man, and celebrate the day. This season, former Project Inclusion Freeman Conducting Fellows Kellen Gray and Kedrick Armstrong will helm the podium for a breakout performance, in addition to a spoken word performance of Dr. King’s speeches — all right next store to us.
When: Monday, January 21
Where: Symphony Center (220 S. Michigan Ave.)
Cost: $10-75

Chicago Restaurant Week
What: This year’s Chicago Restaurant Week will be the largest ever, with nearly 400 local restaurants participating. That includes over 100 first-time participants and 45 suburban restaurants. The 12th annual culinary celebration features special prix fixe menus starting at $24 for brunch and lunch, and $36 and/or $48 for dinner (excluding beverages, tax and gratuity).
When: Friday, January 25 – Thursday, February 7
Where: Restaurants across Chicago
Cost: $24 for brunch and lunch, and $36 and/or $48 for dinner

Polar Adventure Day at Northerly Island
What: Because Chicagoans love to tough out the cold to participate in winter activities outdoor, explore Northerly Island and come face-to-face with live animals,  and create nature-inspired crafts.
When: Saturday, January 26
Where: Northerly Island
Cost: Free

From The Vault

How the Neighborhoods Got Named Where to Find Uniquely Chicago Holiday Gifts Podcast: Henry Kupjack, Artist, in conversation with Lindsay Mican Go Back to Chicago: 1948 Before Navy Pier Had Tourists Get a Cup of Local Joe Happy's, A Holiday Pop-Up Bar, Is Back MSI After Hours: Oddities and Curiosities