22 Exciting Things To Do During January In Chicago

Charli Renken Charli Renken

22 Exciting Things To Do During January In Chicago

January is a whole new start! How will you spend it?

It’s finally 2020 and with that comes all kinds of new opportunities to live your best life in Chicago. We’ve got a whole list of exciting things to do in the Windy City for locals and tourists alike. Here are 22 fantastic things to do in Chicago during the month of Jan.

1. Enjoy Live Music at Le Piano

Photo by Phillip Tawanchaya

The musicians who play at Le Piano are some of the best in Chicago. While the schedule is roughly the same week to week, every night is a brand new experience of musical spontaneity. Secret Chicago readers can get an exclusive date night offer for live music and two cocktails Mon-Thurs. More information.


2. Learn to cook at Get in The Kitchen

Photo by Shutterstock

Get In the Kitchen is the “party school” of cooking classes. Located in Boystown, the award-winning cooking school serves up a whole new style of culinary education. Get In the Kitchen offers a variety of BYOB cooking classes and private parties that teach you replicable home-cooking in a social environment. If learning to cook is a new year resolution that’s evaded you year after year, the Get in The Kitchen’s BYOB cooking parties are here to change that. More information.


3. Participate in the annual No Pants Subway Ride

Photo courtesy of Improv Everywhere.

The annual No Pants Subway Ride is part of the comedy troupe Improv Everywhere’s mission to “cause scenes” in public spaces. While the official event takes place in New York, thousands of riders will be taking part in cities across the world including Chicago! The idea behind the public prank is simple: passengers board the train at any given stop without any pants. Participants must act as though they don’t know each other and wear everything else they’d normally wear in winter– hat, coats, scarves, gloves etc.– but appear to have left one crucial article of clothing at home. More information. 

4. Make a plan to keep your new year resolutions at the #Sweatworking Summit

Photo courtesy of #Sweatworking Summit.

Contrary to what the name might make you believe, this goal-setting bootcamp is more than an all day fitness class. Fitness it part of it, sure, but instructors and speakers will teach you how to set and achieve goals, be more mindful, better your nutrition, advance your career, upgrade your self-care and more! The summit takes place Sat, Jan 25 and Sun Jan 26. More information.

5. Or take freezing your ass off to another level at the Polar Bear Plunge

Photo: @chicagopolarbearclub

Every year since 2001, over 3,000 people wade into Lake Michigan to raise money for families in need. It’s a wild, ridiculous event that will put a smile on your frozen face while also helping 30+ families in Chicago. Get your speedo ready and have a big fluffy towel on hand to join the Chicago Polar Bear Club for its 19th year of freezing their asses off. More information. 


6-13. Think fast and puzzle your way out of these escape rooms.

Photo courtesy of Fever Labs Inc.

Escape rooms are a fun and exciting way to exercise your puzzle-solving and teambuilding skills. Chicago has several dynamic, thrilling escape room adventures perfect for a special event or just a fun night out with friends or coworkers. Here are a few of our favorites:

6. Prison Escape Room at Fox in a Box
7. Zodiac Escape Room at Fox in a Box
8. Back to the 90s at Escape Room Chicago
9. Trapped in a Room With a Zombie at Escape Room Chicago
10. The Dollhouse at Escape Artistry
11. Wizard Trials at PanIQ Escape Room


12. Visit some of Chicago’s best museums for free!

The Field Museum. Photo: @wad_albadri

Chicago is home to some of the largest and most respected museums in the world like The Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium, Art Institute of Chicago, The Adler Planetarium, and more! As wonderful as these exhibits are, seeing all of them can be pricey. General admission tickets can cost as much as $40 per person at some museums. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy all the amazing exhibits Chicago has to offer. Many of the city’s museums have free admission days during which tickets are free to IL residents. There are also many museums that are free to attend all year long! More information.


13. Unwind at The Astrological Vibrations yoga tour

Photo courtesy of Fever Labs Inc.

The Astrological Vibrations tour is a unique experience touring several of Chicago’s best yoga studios. Part yoga class, part social and vendor market, the tour is meant to leave your body rejuvenated, your mind relaxed, and boost the health of your social circle. The next tour date is Jan 11. More information. 


14. Escape the cold for an intimate concert by candlelight.

Photo by Chris Monaghan.

Now performing in Chicago is Fever Original Candlelight, a series of candlelit performances of iconic classical music. These evening concerts make the perfect date night to calm your mind and indulge your senses. The fanciful music of composers like Vivaldi, Beethoven, and Schubert is bound to enchant you. Historic Chicago architecture transforms performances into a magical atmosphere as flickering candles light up the stage. More information. 


15. Enjoy a bowl of soup for a good cause at the Chicago Queer Soup Night 

Photo: @donnypb

This event at Women & Children First is a monthly benefit for local charities. Gather for a bowl of warm soup from four different Queer Chefs and listen to incredible music from DJ Club Chow. This month’s QSN will benefit Affinity, an organization that focusses on healthcare, leadership, and community building within the LGBTQ+ and Black communities of Chicago. More information. 


16-20. Learn to Dance

Photo courtesy of Fever Labs Inc.

Another new year resolution you might have is to learn to dance. There are tons of awesome dance classes in Chicago. Learn to groove at some of our favorites below:

16. Argentine Tango
17. Latin Rhythms: Salsa, Bachata, and Mambo classes
18. Life of a Pole Trick pole dancing and aerial silks
19. A variety of classes including Ballet, Modern, Jazz, Tap, and Hip Hop at Hubbard Street Dance Chicago
20. WKOP teaches women-only KPOP (Korean Pop music) dancing


21. Join the Fibers Circle club at the PO Box Collective

Photo courtesy of the PO Box Collective.

The PO Box Collection hosts a Fibers circle the 1st and 3rd Monday of every month. Bring something you’re currently working on for skill sharing and socializing. More information. 


22. Free movies at Whiskey Business

Photo: @whiskeybusinesschi

The popular rooftop bar films free movies multiple times a month. Jan’s theme is films featuring Cameron Diaz. Curl up under the night sky on one of Whiskey Business’ light up couches and enjoy fun romantic comedies and delicious food and cocktails! More information. 


Looking for more fun things to do in Chicago during Jan? Check out all the best experience the Windy City has to offer by downloading the Fever app!


Feature photo by Jordan on Unsplash

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