Top 10 Things To Do August 2020 in Lake County

“One day, you discover you are alive. Explosion! Concussion! Illumination! Delight! You laugh, you dance around, you shout. But, not long after, the sun goes out. Snow falls, but no one sees it, on an August noon.” – The century-old, birthday-boy Ray Bradbury.

Are we past the summer’s midway point? Not entirely, but August 2020 is jam-packed full of splendid warm-season events for you and the family to put on the docket.

Devour delectable land of lakes eats, scour a museum, splash in the refreshing Lake County waters and so much more in August 2020.

Experience a Lake County summer before it’s too late with the top things to do  August 2020 in Lake County.

1. Lake County Restaurant Rally (July 31-August 9)

The inaugural Lake County Restaurant Rally kicks off this weekend all across the land of lakes. The “Come Back for Seconds” event is highlighted by over 100 eateries around the county. Visit Lake County encourages visitors to explore unique dining experiences for ten days and to discover and dine across the area, while foodies will find new favorites, sample local cuisine and share their experiences on social media with #LCRestaurantRally. The fare frenzy emboldens cuisine connoisseurs when they arrive at a participating location to check-in utilizing their mobile pass to show they’re in attendance. Individuals checked in at a participating eatery through August 9 are entered into a sweepstakes to win a gift card. Visit to download the app. This “sister” promotional campaign, akin to Lake County Restaurant Week, helps the area’s hospitality industry partners and keeps the local economy strong. For more details about the fare event, visit The rally runs through August 9.

2. Chill on the Beaches of Lake County (All of August)


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🛶(close enough) #igersmidwest #midwestliving

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The land of lakes is home to over 200 lakes and miles of Lake Michigan shoreline, which means the beaches are in abundance. Searching for an adventure in one of the Great Lakes? Illinois Beach State Park in Zion is your destination? Taking your little guppies for a more youngster-friendly environment? Lake Zurich’s Paulus Park Beach has lifeguards and a water playground. Take a dip and cool yourself off this summer along one of Lake County’s relaxing shores. So kick back and relax, and remember, life’s a social distancing beach!

3. Hurricane Harbor in Gurnee Opens to the General Public (All of August)


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Take a dip in the drink, recline, relax and experience all the thrills at Hurricane Harbor. The Gurnee waterpark opens for the general public in the last week of July. The H2O haven is equipped with numerous waterslides, the main swimming area called Monsoon Lagoon, a kid zone play area that utterly soaks attendees, an interactive surf area and so much more. Have a splashing good time this year.

4. Ravinia District Al Fresco Dining and Live Music (All of August)


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Share a mango on a stick! #chicagoeats

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The summertime is all about listening to live music while sharing exceptional cuisine. While the novel coronavirus has canceled many performances in Highland Park, including the renowned Ravinia Festival, the southeastern Lake County city hosts live music in the shared outdoor dining space along Roger Williams, Burton and Pleasant Avenues. This month’s performances in Ravinia District Al Fresco Dining and Live Music features the following below. The fare and tune affair runs on weekends through August 29.

  • Ravinia Ramblers (Aug. 1)
  • Cover Story (Aug. 2)
  • Rachel Drew & Rob Elvis (Aug. 6)
  • Al Rose & Steve Doyle (Aug. 8)
  • Anderlik & Church Duo (Aug. 15)
  • Zach Goforth (Aug. 20)
  • Handsome Man’s Gentlemen Club (Aug. 22)
  • Railheart Duo Ft. Noah Plotkin & Jared Rabin playing acoustic Grateful Dead Music (Aug. 27)
  • John Kimler Duo (Aug. 29)

5. Lake County Festivals (All of August)

“When it’s time to party we will party hard!” – Andrew W.K. While things are a little bit different due to the public health crisis, there’s still a collection of summer festivals happening in the land of lakes. A few boat parties, art festivals and delectable bites and libation festivities are just what the doctor ordered. Here’s what Lake County has on the docket in the festival department.

  • Lake County Restaurant Rally (July 31-August 9) INFO»
  • Rosé Fest at Main Street Social (Aug. 1) INFO»
  • Venetian Night Lite at North Point Marina (Aug. 1) INFO»
  • Long Grove Vintage Days (Aug. 1-2) INFO»
  • First Fridays on MainStreet Libertyville (Aug. 7) INFO»
  • 80s Weekend at Blarney Island (Aug. 7-9) INFO»
  • Blarney Island’s Fantasy Fest Weekend (Aug. 13-16) INFO»
  • ArtWauk in Waukegan (Aug. 15) INFO»
  • Lincolnshire Art Festival (Aug. 15-16) INFO»
  • Port Clinton Art Festival in Highland Park (Aug. 29-30) INFO»

6. Butterflies & Blooms (through September 20) and the Modern Railroad Garden (August 9-October 11) at Chicago Botanic Garden


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#flowers #botanicalgardens #butterfly #nature #macrophotography #bloom

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Witness the majesty and beauty of the Swallowtail, Lycaenidae, Nymphalidae, Skipperling and as many as 500 other colorful butterflies and blooms at Chicago Botanic Garden. The Butterflies & Blooms exhibition highlights species that are native to Africa, Asia, North America and South America. The butterflies are housed in a 2,800-square-foot mesh enclosure on the Regenstein Learning Campus. Visitors can view the cocooned caterpillars make their transformation into butterflies through a window located inside the pupa emergence room. The exhibit is open daily through September 20 (weather permitting). But wait! There’s more! Chicago Bo is also highlighted by the 7,500-foot Model Railroad Garden. The choo choo world features rains running on 1,600 feet of track. The garden-scale trains are 1/29th the size of life-size trains. Train and garden enthusiasts, young and old, return year after year for the delightful sights and sounds of the miniature trains traversing high and low through tunnels, across bridges, and around buildings. All are intricately handcrafted with natural materials, including twigs, bark, leaves, acorns, and pebbles. More than 5,000 tiny trees, shrubs, ground covers, and flowering plants of close to 300 varieties re-create the topographical landscape of America. Vignettes of small people and animals give the exhibit a storybook feel, while sound effects and a working geyser capture visitors’ imaginations. The train garden is open through October 11. Face coverings are required for anyone ages two years and older, and six-foot social distancing is encouraged.

7. Lake County Farmers Markets (All of August)


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My people. . . #cheese #cheesepeople #farmersmarkets #buylocal #shoplocal

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Lake County’s Farmers Markets are more than just places to find the freshest, locally grown, and deliciously ripe fruits and vegetables of the season. They’re also a place where neighbors, friends and family shop for unique handmade goods and explore the never-ending variety of local items from welcoming vendors. Don’t forget it is National Farmers Market Week from August 2-8. With the public health crisis, there are a few guidelines to follow to ensure everyone’s safety. Click the button below to learn more.

8. Ghost Wauk and Historical Tours at Genesee Theatre (Saturdays and Thursdays Through August 13)


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Did you know The Genesee is open for Tours?!?

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It’s not even October 31 yet, but there’s something spooky going on at Genesee Theatre in Waukegan. The historic theatre is hosting a GhostWauk and a Historical Tour. This ghoulish adventure takes visitors back to the roaring 20s when claims of ghost sightings and unexplained phenomena have surrounded the historic space. The hair-raising tour features tales of paranormal activities, the theatre’s history and unsettling, unsolved mysteries. The theatre will also showcase the non-spooky side of the theatre as it shares the history of when the theatre first opened its doors in 1927 to 93 years later: present-day Genesee Theatre. The GhostWauk and Historic Tours occur every Saturday and Thursday through August 13. Tickets must be ordered in advance, and masks are required. Call the theatre for tickets at 847-263-6300 or via

9. Great Lakes, Great Women Virtual Presentation at National Museum of the American Sailor (August 18)

The Naval Station Great Lakes Museum will remain closed through at least September 8. However, the National Museum of the American Sailor is still providing top-notch programming via Zoom. In Late August, celebrate the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment: “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any state on account of sex.” The virtual presentation hosted by Museum technician Kim Ortega will explore women’s contributions to Naval Station Great Lakes, it will highlight several women who broke legal and civic barriers in the fight for inclusion, equality and recognition within the U.S. Navy and more. The 45-minute presentation is expected to run 45 minutes with time for audience questions following the meeting.

10. Ray Bradbury’s 100 Birthday (August 22)

Lake County wishes one of Waukegan’s legendary residents a very Happy Born Day. The City of Progress, Waukegan, will be doing extensive celebrations to the Fahrenheit 451 writer. Stay tuned for more details.

For more information about the top things to do August 2020 in Lake County, click here. Make your reservations for Lake County Restaurant Rally and support our local eateries from July 31-August 9. Continue here to learn more about it.


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