20 Top Midwest Events in June | Midwest Living

20 Top Midwest Events in June

Festivals, art shows and concerts fill the Midwest's calendar this month.


Chicago Ale Fest, Chicago June 23–24 

Explore more than  200 beers from 100-some craft breweries in historic Grant Park, where food trucks also show up for the occasion (chicagoalefest.com).


Summer of Glass, Fort Wayne June 24–September 10

View works from the world’s top glass artists in the annual showcase at the Fort Wayne Museum of Art (fwmoa.org).


Ride the River, Davenport June 18

On Father’s Day, pedal up to 60 miles through the Quad Cities, then cross the Mississippi on a ferry, during a two-state charity ride to protect the Big River (riveraction.org).


Exquisite Miniatures, Montezuma June 4–September 3

Mini paintings by Wes and Rachelle Siegrist, some portraits and landscapes as tiny as 1¼ inch in diameter, show at the Stauth Memorial Museum (stauthmemorialmuseum.org).

Alexander Hamilton Lives, Wichita June 16

Inspired by the Broadway hit Hamilton, the Museum of World Treasures invites visitors to enter a 1787 Philadelphia pub, sample Colonial eats, sip grog and hear from a top Hamilton historian (worldtreasures.org).

National Festival of Breads, Manhattan June 17

Home bakers compete for the title of Best Amateur Bread Baker in America. Spectators can watch  the finalists and participate in baking sessions or a 5K race (nationalfestivalofbreads.com).


Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix, Detroit June 2–4

Flags will fly as the cars of the Verizon IndyCar Series and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship compete at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park (detroitgp.com).

Mackinac Island Lilac Festival, Mackinac Island June 9–18

Celebrate summer’s sweetest-smelling blossoms over 10 days at several island locations. You’ll get the chance to taste wine, take horse-drawn carriage tours and sample local fare at A Taste of Mackinac (mackinacisland.org).

Mackinac Island Lilac Festival. Photo by Bob Stefko. 


Twin Cities Jazz Festival, Saint Paul June 22–24

Whether you prefer your jazz cool, hot or bossa nova-esque, you’ll find your groove at this free festival that drew 90,000 attendees to Mears Park in 2016 (twincitiesjazzfestival.com).


Dog Days Canine Cannonball, Osage Beach June 16–18

That’s not a bird, not a plane, but a dog—competing in a DockDogs jumping contest. Watch competing airborne pooches leap from a dock  into a pool (dockdogs.com).


Norah Jones, Omaha June 5 

Join the nine-time Grammy winner, known for her soulful, jazzy melodies, as she fills the Orpheum Theater with all the feels (ticketomaha.com).

Painting the Legacy of Nebraska, Grand Island June 17– August 20

The Cornhusker State’s  93 counties appear in works created by native Nebraskan Todd Williams. The traveling exhibit will salute 150 years of Nebraska history at the Stuhr Museum of the Prairie Pioneer (stuhrmuseum.org).

North Dakota

Roughrider Days Fair and Expo, Dickinson June 23–July 4

Witness the roughest riders in the state at the Stark County Fairgrounds, with rodeos, a horse show, fireworks and a concert by country duo Big and Rich (roughriderdaysfair.com).


Duck Tape Festival, Avon June 16–18

Welcome to the place wnere duct—or duck—tape is made. (Potato-potahto.) The town celebrates its famous product with a parade, sculptures and a fashion show, with everything made of the sticky stuff (ducktapefestival.com).

The Country Fest, Canal Fulton June 22–24

Some of the biggest names in country music are headed to the heart of Ohio, where you’ll kick up your boots to Blake Shelton, Jake Owen and Travis Tritt (thecountryfest.com).

South Dakota

The Comedy of Errors, Vermillion June 8–11 

Twins. Mistaken identities. And wit for days. The Bard’s beloved comedy, presented by the South Dakota Shakespeare Festival, hits the stage at Prentis Park (sdshakespearefestival.org).

Wild Bill Days, Deadwood June 16–18

Roam the streets where Wild Bill Hickok ultimately met his demise. The folk hero’s namesake festival features gold-panning demonstrations, Fast Draw championships and historical reenactments (deadwood.com).

Sculpture in the Hills, Hill City June 24–25

A juried art show sets up shop between South Dakota’s two prized monuments, Mount Rushmore and Crazy Horse. Head to Main Street for masterful wall art, glasswork and sculptures (hillcityarts.org).


Door County Lighthouse Festival, Door County June 9–11 

Start at the Door County Maritime Museum in Sturgeon Bay, then embark on tours (by foot or boat excursion) of lighthouses that are rarely open to the public, such as Plum Island and Sherwood Point (dcmm.org). 

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