Weekend picks: Place your bets for the Arlington Million

  • Hardest Core, with jockey Eriluis Vaz, won the Arlington Million at Arlington International Racecourse in 2014.

    Hardest Core, with jockey Eriluis Vaz, won the Arlington Million at Arlington International Racecourse in 2014. Joe Lewnard | Staff Photographer

  • Umphrey's McGee plays Ravinia in Highland Park Friday, Aug. 14.

    Umphrey's McGee plays Ravinia in Highland Park Friday, Aug. 14.

  • Chicago rock band I Fight Dragons brings geek chic to a benefit show at Martyrs' Friday, Aug. 14.

    Chicago rock band I Fight Dragons brings geek chic to a benefit show at Martyrs' Friday, Aug. 14.

  • Comedian Butch Bradley performs at Zanies in Rosemont.

    Comedian Butch Bradley performs at Zanies in Rosemont.

  • Thomas the Tank Engine rolls down the track at an annual Day Out with Thomas event. The event returns to the Illinois Railroad Museum in Union.

    Thomas the Tank Engine rolls down the track at an annual Day Out with Thomas event. The event returns to the Illinois Railroad Museum in Union. Courtesy of Edaville USA, 2012

  • Comedian Steve Trevino performs at the Improv Comedy Showcase in Schaumburg.

    Comedian Steve Trevino performs at the Improv Comedy Showcase in Schaumburg.

  • Courtesy of Ravinia FestivalSoprano Amber Wagner stars as Senta who is obsessed with the title character of "The Flying Dutchman." The Wagner opera is performed by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the Ravinia Festival on Saturday, Aug. 15.

    Courtesy of Ravinia FestivalSoprano Amber Wagner stars as Senta who is obsessed with the title character of "The Flying Dutchman." The Wagner opera is performed by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra at the Ravinia Festival on Saturday, Aug. 15.

  • Courtesy of Ravinia FestivalBass-baritone Greer Grimsley stars in the title role of "The Flying Dutchman" at the Ravinia Festival in Highland Park. The Wagner opera is performed on Saturday, Aug. 15.

    Courtesy of Ravinia FestivalBass-baritone Greer Grimsley stars in the title role of "The Flying Dutchman" at the Ravinia Festival in Highland Park. The Wagner opera is performed on Saturday, Aug. 15.

  • The Exotic Animal Show comes to Round Lake Beach.

    The Exotic Animal Show comes to Round Lake Beach. Daily Herald File Photo

  • Courtesy of Frank Micelotta/Getty Images/Comedy CentralComedian Doug Benson, pictured here in the Comedy Central show "The Benson Interruption," is set to make a special appearance at Zanies in Rosemont on Sunday, Aug. 16.

    Courtesy of Frank Micelotta/Getty Images/Comedy CentralComedian Doug Benson, pictured here in the Comedy Central show "The Benson Interruption," is set to make a special appearance at Zanies in Rosemont on Sunday, Aug. 16.

 
 
Updated 8/12/2015 11:58 AM

Full gallop

The Arlington Million promises the biggest horse racing day of the year on Saturday at Arlington International Racecourse, 2200 W. Euclid Ave., Arlington Heights. $25; $4 kids. (847) 385-7500 or arlingtonpark.com. 11 a.m. gates open; 12:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15

 

Standup guy

Catch up with rising comedian Butch Bradley when he continues his Chicago-area run starting Wednesday at Zanies at MB Financial Park, 5437 Park Place, Rosemont. $22 plus a two menu-item purchase. (847) 813-0484 or zanies.com. 8 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, Aug. 12 and 13, and 8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Aug. 14 and 15

Carnival time

Lindenfest promises a carnival, parade, entertainers, a Lindenfest auction and more starting Thursday at the Village Hall Center, 2301 E. Sand Lake Road, Lindenhurst. Free admission. (847) 356-8252 or lindenhurstil.org. 5:45 to 10 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 13; 6 p.m. to midnight Friday, Aug. 14; noon to midnight Saturday, Aug. 15; and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 16

Suspense in San Francisco

Experience director Alfred Hitchcock's classic 1958 thriller "Vertigo" as it was originally meant to be seen on the big screen on Thursday at the Genesee Theatre, 203 N. Genesee St., Waukegan. $4; $2 kids/seniors. (847) 263-6300 or geneseetheatre.com. 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 13

Wildlife up close

View interesting critters up close at the Exotic Animal Show today at the Cultural & Civic Center of Round Lake Beach, 2007 Civic Center Way, Round Lake Beach. No admission charge. (847) 546-2351 or villageofroundlakebeach.com. 1 to 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 14

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Fab Four fest

Louise Harrison, the tribute band Liverpool and even game show host Bob Eubanks make appearances at Beatles Fest this weekend at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare, 9300 Bryn Mawr Ave., Rosemont. $52-$75 one-day passes; $120-$144 two-day passes; $189 three-day pass. (866) 843-3378 or thefest.com. 5 p.m. to midnight Friday, Aug. 14; noon to midnight Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 15 and 16

Umphrey's jams at Ravinia

In its nearly 18 years performing, Umphrey's McGee started out as a South Bend, Indiana, jam band and has grown into one of the Chicago-area's premier progressive rock establishments. The band -- Brendan Bayliss, Jake Cinninnger, Joel Cummins, Andy Farag, Ryan Stasik and Palatine native Kris Myers -- has gained a huge following with its genre-jumping improvisational stylings, and Ravinia Festival, 418 Sheridan Road, Highland Park, is just the place to accommodate it, along with the more organic nature of the band's music. Lawn seats are $25 ($30 the day of the performance), reserved seats are $45, and VIP packages are also available; (847) 266-5100 or ravinia.org. 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 14

Tex-Mex man

Comedian Steve Trevino of comedy specials like "Grandpa Joe's Son" and "Relatable" performs standup this weekend at the Improv Comedy Showcase at Woodfield Mall, 5 Woodfield Road, Schaumburg. $19 plus a two-menu purchase. (847) 240-2001 or improv.com. 8 and 10:15 p.m. Friday, Aug. 14; 7 and 9:15 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15; 7 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 16

From Detroit with love

The band Good for the Soul performs beloved pop hits from the last century in "The Magic of Motown" on Friday at the Arcada Theatre, 105 E. Main St., St. Charles. $29-$49. (630) 962-7000 or oshows.com. 8 p.m. Friday, Aug. 14

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Bands, beers and ... bosons?

Chicago rock band I Fight Dragons is teaming up with Strange Bedfellows Theater and Dark Sage Brewery for The Final Frontbeer benefit bash at Martyrs', 3855 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago. The Dragons gang -- who wrote the theme song "Rewind" for TV's "The Goldbergs" -- has worked with the brewery to create two custom craft beers to be sampled at the event, and raffles and door prizes will be given away throughout the night. Chicago punk rockers Diagon Alley and Doctor Who-inspired Time Crash also jump in on the wibbly wobbly timey wimey fun. Funds raised will go to producing playwright K. Frithjof Peterson's newest adventure "Bosons," so if hearing good music or tasting new beer isn't enough of a draw, you'll also be supporting the arts. $15 in advance, $20 at the door; (773) 404-9494 or martyrslive.com. 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 14

Lakefront show

The U.S. Navy Blue Angels and the Breitling Jet Team are two of the headliners for the 57th annual Chicago Air and Water Show this weekend on view along Chicago's lakefront from Fullerton Avenue to Oak Street Beach. Free. (312) 744-3316 or cityofchicago.org. 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 15 and 16

Choo! Choo!

See an oversize Thomas the Tank Engine in person as part of the special two-weekend Day Out with Thomas: The Celebration Tour 2015! event at the Illinois Railway Museum, 7000 Olson Road, Union. $21 Thomas only ride; $31 Thomas/Percy combo. (866) 468-7630, (815) 923-4000, dayoutwiththomas.com or irm.org. Departures every 30 minutes from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 15 and 16, 22 and 23

Lincolnshire Art Festival

Check out pieces from 100 juried artists from around the country at the Lincolnshire Art Festival, 100 Village Green, Suite 130, Lincolnshire. Plus, there's live music, food, kids' activities and more. Free. amdurproductions.com. 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 15-16

Eat your veggies

Learn about vegetarian life at Veggie Fest Chicago 2015 at Benedictine University, 5700 College Road, Lisle. The outdoor festival features vegetarian food, cooking demonstrations, live music, speakers, kids' activities and more. Free. veggiefestchicago.org. 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 15-16

A hole in one

The Self-Help Closet & Pantry of Des Plaines hosts its third annual summer fundraiser, Putt for the Pantry, a miniature golf event for all ages, at Mountain View Adventure Center, 510 E. Algonquin Road, Des Plaines. Cost is $15 for adults ($12 with a donation of nonperishable food or paper products); $8 for kids 12 and younger. For reservations and details, call (847) 375-1443. The Self-Help Closet & Pantry serves Des Plaines residents in need. selfhelppantry.org. Noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15

Gimme that Giving Tree

The Giving Tree Band, hailing from Yorkville, brings its Grateful Dead-inspired folk jam to Veggie Fest 2015, a two-day celebration of the vegetarian food and lifestyle on the grounds of Benedictine University, 5700 College Road, Lisle. GTB harnesses strains of soul and classic rock, filtered through new-school Americana folk, for a catalog of originals and old favorites that earned them slots playing with the likes of Joe Purdy and Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes. Free admission; (630) 955-1200 or veggiefestchicago.org or thegivingtreeband.com. The Giving Tree Band plays from noon to 2:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15

'Sing-A-Long Frozen'

Belt out the words to "Let It Go" and songs from Disney's 2013 Academy Award-winning animated film "Frozen" at the "Sing-A-Long Frozen: The Movie" event at RiverEdge Park, 360 N. Broadway, Aurora. Kids' games, an Anna-and-Elsa costume contest and other activities begin at 7:15 p.m. Bring blankets and lawn chairs for seating. Free. (630) 896-6666 or riveredgeaurora.com. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15. The film begins at 8 p.m. on the giant outdoor screen.

AIDS awareness

Giordano Dance Chicago, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Joffrey Ballet, River North Dance Chicago and more perform in Dance for Life to support those dealing with critical health issues, including HIV/AIDS. The performance is on Saturday at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University, 50 E. Congress Parkway, Chicago, and benefits the AIDS Foundation of Chicago and The Dancers' Fund. $15-$600. (312) 922-5812 or danceforlifechicago.org or auditoriumtheatre.org. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15

Ghost ship

The Chicago Symphony Orchestra performs Richard Wagner's 1843 supernatural love story "The Flying Dutchman" with celebrated singers like bass-baritone Greer Grimsley and soprano Amber Wagner on Saturday at the Ravinia Festival, 418 Sheridan Road, Highland Park. $25-$120 pavilion seating; $15 lawn seating. (847) 266-5100 or ravinia.org. 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 15

Comedy bud

Comedian Doug Benson ("Super High Me," "The Doug Benson Interruption") returns today to perform a special one-off show at the Zanies at MB Financial Park, 5437 Park Place, Rosemont. $20 plus a two menu purchase. (847) 813-0484 or zanies.com. 4:20 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 16

Zydeco Voodoo

Zydeco Voodoo, which specializes in New Orleans-style tunes, along with rock and blues, headlines an outdoor concert at Capannari Ice Cream, 10 S. Pine St., Mount Prospect. Bring a picnic dinner and a lawn chair or blanket for seating. Free. (847) 392-2277 or capannaris.com. 6 to 8 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 16

Big Band Dance

Step out on the dance floor as the 16-piece Bobby Sanders Orchestra plays music from big band greats during the Big Band Dance at Atlantic Banquets, 1273 N. Rand Road, Arlington Heights. Singles and couples are welcome. $15 per person. For details, call (847) 392-0918. 7 to 10 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 16

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