(Courtesy Chicago Loop Alliance)

A pop-up street art festival, summer workouts, circus acts and the sounds of nature usher in the holiday weekend. Here are a dozen things to do in and around Chicago.

A hawk moth. (Ian Lindsay / Pixabay)

If crack-of-dawn birding isn’t your thing, maybe give under-the-cover-of-darkness moth-watching a try this weekend at Indian Ridge Marsh. 

South Deering (WTTW News)

Protesters are urging the city to stop a metal-scrapping company from opening on the Southeast Side. What both sides have to say.

(WTTW News)

The industrial community once marked by steel mills is now lined with other plants, and the proposed opening of a metal scrapping company has become a point of controversy on the Southeast Side and across the city.

(Courtesy Friends of Big Marsh)

A grant from the state will help fund creation of the Chicago Park District’s first campground and a fully accessible 3-mile trail at Big Marsh, a natural area rising up from the waste of big steel on the city’s Southeast Side.

(Courtesy Solar Energy Industries Association)

Chicago is seeking proposals to install solar panels on 30 acres of previously developed land in Austin, Englewood, West Pullman, Riverdale and South Deering. 

Vintage love at the Randolph Street Holiday Market

Vintage gifts, irreverent reindeer, hot mulled wine, Japanese drummers and Mavis Staples usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago.

(Courtesy of Special Events Management)

Tacos and beer, live music, open studios and nerd humor usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago.

Damn, Gina! performs at this year’s Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival. (Courtesy of Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival)

Sketch comedy, Syrian music and a how-to on fact-checking usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago.

Sample sale: 50 varieties of whiskey, scotch and bourbon await your palate in River North.

Comedians, whiskey and a meteor shower usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago.

A BMX biker performing a wheelie. (Andrey Marshak / Wikimedia Commons)

Billed by the city as the first park of its kind in the Midwest, Big Marsh Bike Park will open this winter at a former industrial site that's now part of a 270-acre habitat restoration project.

In 2011, the Chicago Park District bought 20 acres of land on the city's north side. The plot of land had sat unused and untended for many years. Nearly four years later, work on the nature preserve is moving quickly with a scheduled unveiling set for this summer. We get a preview.