47 Amazing Things To Do In Chicago In April, Without Leaving Your House

Claire Leaden Claire Leaden

47 Amazing Things To Do In Chicago In April, Without Leaving Your House

Even though Chicago is shut down, it’s a new month and there’s still loads to do…all from the comfort and safety of your home, of course.

From learning new skills to taking advantage of unbelievable virtual tours and exhibits, we’re determined to help you have the least-boring month possible while inside!

1. Learn How To Knit From Your Couch With We Are Knitters

Courtesy We Are Knitters

Isolation is the perfect excuse to learn a new hobby: you have loads of extra time to yourself indoors, and even being just a little bit productive can help ease feelings of boredom. Learning how to knit is especially perfect for this time, as studies show that knitting reduces stress and anxiety. It’s also great for restless kiddos since it helps them improve mind-to-motor skills.

The startup We Are Knitters is offering amazing luxury knitting kits that come with everything you need: needles, yarn, and instructions on how to make the coziest items of your dreams. Choose from luxe sweaters, blankets, scarves and more. They’re becoming even more popular during quarantine as more people are looking for fulfilling, indoor activities to keep them entertained.

We Are Knitters is also planning to launch new eco-friendly products by mid-April, so stay tuned! Their yarns are always made from 100% natural materials like soft cotton and merino wool, and the color options like pale pinks and marigold yellows are ideal for spring. Check them out here. ⭐️Sponsored⭐️

2. Try To Play the Guitar

Unsplash Kelly Sikkema

Or ukuele! Or bass! Fender, the guitar manufacturing company, is offering three free months of their online music lessons during the coronavirus outbreak. Their online music program, Fender Play, will be free to everyone who wants to learn how to play while they’re practicing social distancing. How thoughtful!

3-5. Taking A Cooking Class

Instagram / @pastawithgrandma

Or THREE! Our favorites are:

6. Participate in the Ultimate Virtual Dance Party

Courtesy Fever

Shake things up with this incredible online quarantine party! As the lockdown continues and you find yourself still sitting at home, as you should be, you might be feeling a little bored. Well, we’re here to help, because Fever is hosting a fantastic free online quarantine party for you and your friends every Saturday. Sign up here.

7. Become a master mixologist with these quarantine cocktail kits!

Photo courtesy of Fever

With so many of us couped up inside right now, going out for drinks isn’t really any option. While all the bars are closed, that doesn’t mean you can’t open your own right in your very own kitchen! Brix Catering is now offering Quarantine Cocktail Kits for contact-less pick up. These kits have everything you need to make your favorite bar’s cocktails right at home. Order yours today! ⭐️Sponsored⭐️

8. Try your hand at stand up comedy at the Cabin Fever open mic!

Cabin Fever virtual flyer. Courtesy of Lauren Harsh Comedy.

The comedy scene in Chicago is having a difficult time right now, with many open mics and showcases being canceled or postponed amid the coronavirus outbreak. Laugh Factory, for instance, announced on social media that all of its locations will temporarily close during the pandemic. One comedian isn’t letting that stop them from telling jokes, however. Chicago comedian Lauren Harsh (they/them) is now hosting Cabin Fever, a weekly virtual open mic to keep their comedy muscles spry.

The concept is simple. Comics interested in signing up for the mic should message Harsh’s comedy page on Facebook. Call time for comedians is every Fri night 5:30 p.m. in a Zoom video chatroom, which is also where the show takes place. The mic starts at 6 p.m. and usually runs about two hours. Those interested in attending or participating in Cabin Fever should follow Lauren Harsh Comedy on Facebook for the latest Zoom link each week.

9. Beat The Clock In This Trap Door Escape Room Live Stream

Facebook / Trap Door Escape Room

Solve the puzzles and unlock mysteries, live and from the comfort of your own home! In this thrilling virtual escape room, an actor takes you box by box and relies on you to solve all the puzzles via a live video feed and a chatroom. You’ll tell them where to go and what to do through virtual tours. These are sure to pump your adrenaline with found footage style production! Get tickets here.

10-12. Take A Virtual Trip To Europe With These Incredible Themed ‘Walking’ Tours

See Your City

See Your City is helping people from all over the world take a quick trip to beautiful London, thanks to their amazing virtual walking tours of the city. The company, which runs these tours in person during “normal” life, has now taken some of their best-loved tours online. And you can do them all without leaving your bed! There’s a Jack the Ripper tour, which follows the trail of London’s most notorious serial killer, a virtual walking tour of London’s magical film locations and one of Edinburgh, Scotland’s enchanting filming locations!

13. Test Your Knowledge With This Epic LIVE Fantasy Quiz


Behold wizards, witches and werewolves as we bring to your screens a fun, mystical and mythical online trivia competition! Don your robes, gowns, wizard hats and more importantly your general knowledge as you battle it out for the coveted virtual trophy and redeemable prizes. This trivia series is designed for all lovers of fantasy and sci-fi, spanning across several genres with a broad focus on popular fantasy over the last few decades. Grab tickets here!

14. Be Hypnotized By A Celebrity Magician


Now you can experience what Johnny Wu does for celebrities from the comfort of your own home. If it’s real magic then he should be able to perform it virtually right? You’ll have a 40 minute Zoom call performance that includes hypnosis and live tricks! This is the most unique way to experience magic–turn up your speakers & share this virtual experience with your entire family. Get your tickets here.

15. Have An At-Home Date Night Scavenger Hunt


Date night is still on! Cure your cabin fever and get the sparks flying on an in-home date scavenger hunt! Let’s Roam from Home Hunts help couples deepen their connection and have a blast. All you need is your phone and your significant other. The interactive Let’s Roam app will present you with a series of challenges and questions ranging in difficulty and point value, all designed to bring you closer together. Check them out here.

16. Peek Through The Keyhole Into Romantic 19th Century Paris

The popular immersive Unmaking Toulouse-Lautrec show by Bated Breath Theatre Company has now transformed into an exciting digital experience: Toulouse Lautrec’s Through the Keyhole! You’ll meet the women behind some of the most beautiful post-impressionist paintings in history, in five personal episodes that will share the stories of those who inspired the iconic artist. Get your tickets to this spellbinding experience here.

17-20. Look Forward to Incredible Events This Summer and Fall

Even though we’re staying safe at home right now, it’s still fun to plan how we’re going to celebrate later this summer and fall. Don’t miss these fantastic events coming to Chicago later this year:

21. Read or listen to a new book for free through your local public library!

Photo: @bandatzmaru

Chicago public libraries may be closed as part of the Stay at Home ordinance, but that doesn’t mean access to free media is gone with it. Chicagoans can still download free ebooks, audiobooks, movies, and more through the Chicago Public Library’s online resources. Read our guide on how to access this incredible free service.

22-24. Livestream an Epic Concert

Live Nation is turning canceled concert tours into the ultimate livestream sessions right from your couch with their new “Live from Home” feature. We have our eyes on:

  • Hozier on Fridays
  • Miley Cyrus’s daily “Bright Minded” interviews on Instagram
  • Diplo’s Coronight Fever on Saturdays

You can see all the artists doing livestreams every single day right from their website.

25. Watch the Northern Lights


Did you know you can watch the Aurora Borealis from literally anywhere in the world? Many have always dreamed of seeing the northern lights up close, but it certainly won’t be happening any time soon, thanks to a certain global pandemic. But, thanks to the internet, we’ve found a compromise…find out how you can now stream them here.

26. Look for a Rainbow on Your Daily (Socially Distant) Walk

Screenshot, Google Maps.

Little moments of kindness and comfort do a lot to lift spirits during this challenging time, and Chicagoans have been doing their part in such a sweet way: by putting rainbows in their windows. The “Rainbow Connection” first began as a way to entertain children on daily walks, according to Buzzfeed, since they couldn’t see their friends or go out to playgrounds anymore. Neighbors all over the country started putting rainbows in their windows, whether in the form of drawings, paintings, etc., so children could try to spot as many as they could while out and about. Now there is a map where you can see all of them!

27. Have the ultimate Harry Potter experience right at home!

Photo by Artem Maltsev on Unsplash

Quarantine might make you feel like you’re stuck in a cupboard under the stairs, but that doesn’t mean Hogwarts is out of sight. The magic of the internet brings us lots of things to do and allows us to connect with witches and wizards all over the globe! It’s kind of like the sonorous charm, that way. If you’re a magical being living at the Dursley’s right now, we’ve got tons of ways to make quarantine your very own Hogwarts! Check out our article here.

28. Watch a Broadway Show


You already know that Broadway stars are performing live on YouTube nightly, but did you know you can also stream the actual shows themselves? BroadwayHD has been around since 2015 but feels especially prevalent right now. With the service, you can get a monthly or yearly membership to stream hundreds of professionally recorded Broadway musicals and plays. Choices range from Carousel to Cats to Kinky Boots to Sweeney Todd to Romeo and Juliet, plus many more.

29. Catch Up on “Good News”

Reading the news can be a tough task right now. Bad news seems to submerge most of what we digest as we remain in the midst of a global pandemic. But, John Krasinski, also known as Jim from The Office, is here to provide us with nothing but the good stuff. Read all about his new YouTube channel here.

30. Learn something new!

Photo by Thomas Kolnowski on Unsplash

Whether you’re a student taking classes remotely during the coronavirus pandemic or just want to learn something new, you can find tons of educational resources online. Here’s our list of our favorite academic videos, websites, and activities.

31. Watch the best pop culture conventions play Dungeons & Dragons live!

dungeons & Dragons
Photo by Alperen Yazgı on Unsplash

Our friends at Reedpop– those behind some of the world’s biggest pop culture conventions– are keeping us entertained during the lockdown. Adventurers from C2E2, New York Comic Con, Florida Supercon, Comic Con Africa, Emerald City Comic Con, and MCM Comic Con will play a live Dungeons & Dragons adventure tomorrow on Twitch and Facebook live. Get ready for a critical hit! Read our article here.

32. Explore a Free Virtual Basquiat Art Exhibit

Instagram / @ngvmelbourne

The closure of museums, galleries, and venues across the globe has led to a surprising benefit. It’s no reason to jump and shout for joy of course, considering the trying circumstances that we are all facing, but due to the closure of the National Gallery of Victoria in Australia, people from all around the world will find themselves fortunate enough to view the NGV’s newly-launched virtual programming. This includes the unprecedented and world premiere exhibition Crossing Lines, showcasing the works of Keith Haring and Jean-Michel Basquiat.

33. Play Games with Your Pets

In these desperate times, people have taken to doing “social distancing” activities with their own pets (and they’re pretty hilarious). While the pandemic grips the world, many of us are stuck in self-quarantine or self-isolation. Human contact is going through an awkward phase and pets are seeing more of their humans than they ever cared to.

34. Enjoy adorable animal encounters from the Shedd Aquarium.

The Shedd Aquarium might not be open to the public during COVID-19 closures, but that doesn’t mean the animals are taking a vacation. The Shedd continues to share photos and videos of their most adorable animals. The penguins at the Shedd have been taking little “field trips” to other exhibits and it’s the perfect fix to any crummy day. Check out their last encounters here and follow The Shedd Aquarium on social media for more adorable content.

35. View Over 800 Frida Kahlo Artifacts & Artworks

Self-portrait on the Borderline between Mexico and the United States (1932), Detroit Insitute of Arts, Detroit, MI. Photo courtesy of Google Arts & Culture.

Google Arts & Culture has partnered with museums from all over the world to put on the ultimate Frida Kahlo exhibit. What a time to be at home, because now we finally have the opportunity to explore 33 different museums at the same time and enjoy all of Frida Kahlo’s amazing works—without ever leaving the couch! Google Art & Culture’s online exhibit, “Faces of Frida,” features more than 800 pieces by (and of) the artist in what might be the most epic exhibition yet!

36. Enjoy a Shakespeare Sonnet Read by Patrick Stewart (Every Day!)

A sonnet a day, as promised by Sir Patrick Stewart, will keep the doctor away. Sir Patrick Stewart’s reading of Shakespeare’s Sonnet 116 has clocked up more than one million views on Twitter since it was posted, and the grand response has consequently led him to shower us with more readings. Watch them here!

37. Add some levity to your morning routine by looking through these hilarious Lori Lightfoot memes.

lori lightfoot
Photo: @ButlerDidIt9

It’s human nature to try to find some levity amidst difficult times. A new meme of Mayor Lori Lightfoot standing guard of closed public spaces has been circling Chicago’s internet lately. The Mayor even said during a press conference that she likes the #WheresLightfoot memes popping up on social media. We like them, too, so we put together a list of our favorites for easy access to look at when quarantine is getting you down. Check it out here.

38. Or enjoy these people on Twitter explaining their quarantine experience in one gif.

Image made in Canva.

When times are tough, we like to turn to Twitter for a good laugh. A new Twitter challenge titled #MyQuarantineInAGif, encourages people to process their emotions around the coronavirus outbreak in gif format. Here are 22 of our favorites.

39. Binge-Watch Tiger King


It hasn’t been on Netflix for long, but the streaming service’s latest documentary, Tiger Kinghas had viewers absolutely hooked. Based on the uber-dark true story of Joe Exotic, real name Joseph Maldonado-Passage, the documentary features seven episodes of absolute madness, perfect for spending the weekend snuggled up in front of the TV.

40. Or watch these new movies and TV shows coming to Netflix in April.

netflix april

There’s nothing better than sitting back in your comfiest chair, curling up with a fresh bag of popcorn, and settling in for a good-ole bingewatching session. Here are all the shows, movies, documentaries, and comedy specials coming to Netflix in March.

41. Visit the “Happiest Place on Earth”


The best part—no lines! Disneyland might have shut its doors temporarily, but that doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the fun. Now, you can enjoy all your favorite rides without having to do much traveling past your couch. In response to the temporary shutdown of Disneyland and Walt Disney World, previous visitors have started sharing the wonderment of their ride experiences online (and we’re not totally sure yet if it’s giving us FOMO, but we’re so glad these exist!).

42. Watch LIVE Performances from Broadway Stars

Theater performers are the latest to turn to online streaming in these times of quarantine, bringing famous songs straight into your living room. The Actors Fund announced they are producing online mini-Broadway shows every day to help entertain those stuck inside while also helping to raise money for the nonprofit organization.

43. Learn How to Play 40 Different Board Games

Staying inside doesn’t have to be board-ing…see what we did there? One of our favorite ways to spend a day inside is to play board games, so we’ve put together a list of entertaining tabletop fun you can have while you wait out the coronavirus pandemic. Here are some of our favorite board games and for easy access, we’ve also included video instructions so you can get started right away!

44. Be Put to Sleep By Dolly Parton

‘Goodnight With Dolly’ premieres on April 2! With the world in a fairly odd state right now, drifting off to sleep may not be as easy as it once was. However, we’ve found a brilliant way to get some no-sweat shuteye, and it doesn’t involve counting sheep. In fact, all you need to do is lie there, and let the dulcet tones of legendary songstress Dolly Parton rock you gently to sleep, as she reads from a collection of bedtime stories. Find out more here.

45. Throw a balcony party with the rest of Chicago to show our essential workers you care.

Photo: @oryn0127

While the coronavirus closed clubs weeks ago, the party hasn’t stop. Residents in the South Loop have been throwing balcony parties every night at 8 p.m. lately not only to have fun, but to send a message to essential workers “we appreciate you!” If that isn’t a good reason to party, we don’t know what is. Read our article here.

46. Attend the Social Distancing Festival!

Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

The Social Distancing Festival is an online livestream database of a variety of performances, talks, trivia nights, and more. The festival takes submissions from artists all over the world, giving them a platform to continue to share their work. The goal is to give artists an online venue to perform, create an online community, and support struggling creators.

Through the Social Distancing Festival, you can watch all of Shakespeare plays performed by The Show Must Go Online or see dancer Tadhi Alawi from Dar es Salaam, Tanzania debut Body vs Mouth, a contemporary dance video that was supposed to be shown at the Laois Dance Platform festival in Ireland; you can also take part in online trivia nights, listen to artist talks, dance to virtual music concerts and more! Check out our article here!

47. Play Sims 4 for only five dollars!

Sims started their spring sale a little early this year with 75% off Sims 4 and selected packs. This could bring your Sims purchase down to as little as $5 vs the usual $40. With so many people spending time inside, this discount is a godsend for all of us in self-isolation. Read our article here.

Feature photo by Max Bender on Unsplash

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