Top 5 Reasons to Visit the American Writers Museum in August

We have plenty of events and exhibits that are some of the top things to do in Chicago this month. Celebrate American writing with us!

In addition to sunshine and heat, August brings discounted and free admission offerings to the American Writers Museum for book lovers, teachers, seniors, and more! From special happy hour events to exciting author programs, there are many reasons to stop by the AWM. Plus, from now until August 31, visitors can enjoy a 10% discount on admission prices when purchasing tickets online. So get your tickets today!

Check out what we have lined up in August and subscribe to our e-newsletter below to stay up-to-date on all that’s happening. Also, AWM members get free admission to the AWM and most programs, so if you’re not already a member, become a member today!

1. Get Lit: The Oz Ball (August 8, 5:30 – 7:30 pm CDT)

Get Lit: The Oz Ball

Enjoy adult beverages as you follow the Yellow Brick Road Scavenger Hunt, create Munchkinland-inspired crafts, dance to the Wizard’s Silent Disco and explore all the AWM has to offer. Enjoy beer, wine, and the night’s signature cocktails: The Elphaba, a green vodka-based cocktail and The Glinda, a pink sparkling punch. Non-alcoholic beverage options are available as well. Special guests include local members of The Oz Club, an international Wizard of Oz fan organization made up of hundreds of members around the globe, and Poems While You Wait, who will be creating original typewritten poetry at the event. So don your most dashing Emerald City-inspired look and transport yourself to the whimsical world of L. Frank Baum’s The Wizard of Oz at The Oz Ball! Get your tickets here.

Get Lit events take place the second Tuesday of every month from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm. Each month will have a different theme, so check out upcoming Get Lit events here and be sure to check back regularly as we announce more Get Lit events throughout the year.

2. Back to School with the AWM (August 16, 4:00 – 6:00 pm CDT)

Students interact with typewriters on field trip to the American Writers Museum

Calling all teachers, librarians, and educators…join the American Writers Museum’s Education Team for a fun afternoon of learning and exploration! During this event you’ll discover all the educational opportunities the AWM has to offer, including newly designed curricula for 6th-12th grade levels. You’ll also have the chance to chat with the AWM Education Team to learn how a trip to the AWM—either in person or virtual—can invigorate your students this academic year. Complimentary beer, wine, non-alcoholic drinks, and light snacks will be served. Please be prepared to show your school ID for admission. Register for free here. And if you cannot attend in person, register for the live online presentation here!

3. National Senior Citizens Day (August 21, 10:00 am – 5:00 pm CDT)

On National Senior Citizens Day, Monday, August 21, the AWM will honor visitors aged 65 and over with free admission. Seniors can look forward to a day filled with engaging activities, including a bookmark crafting station, literary bingo, showings of past AWM Author Talks, and museum highlight tours. This is also a great opportunity for seniors to learn more about volunteer opportunities at the AWM. Make it a family outing! Children under the age of 12 always get free admission to the AWM, so round up the fam and make a day of it. Plan your visit today!

4. Patti Hartigan: August Wilson: A Life (August 22, 6:00 pm CDT)

Photo of Patti Hartigan and book cover of August Wilson: A Life

Learn more about the life and legacy of August Wilson, one of the most important and successful American playwrights of the late 20th century at this program. Author and theater critic Patti Hartigan, who knew Wilson personally and interviewed him many times throughout his life, reads from and discusses her new book August Wilson: A Life. This is the first authoritative biography of the man behind iconic plays such as Fences, The Piano Lesson, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, and more. Based on scores of interviews with friends, theater colleagues and family members, as well as extensive research, Hartigan tells the story of a writer who left an indelible imprint on American theater and opened the door for future playwrights of color. Books will be available for purchase and Hartigan will sign them following the in person program. Get your tickets here! This program will also be livestreamed, and you can register to watch online here.

5. Museum Highlights Tour

Museum highlights tour

Looking for a good place to start your American Writers Museum visit? Try our brand new Museum Highlights Tour! This 15-minute tour introduces you to all areas and exhibits of the American Writers Museum to give you a full scope of what we offer. Following the tour, you can explore all of our exhibits more in-depth and at your own pace. Tours are offered daily at 3:00 pm when the AWM is open (Thurs-Tues, 10 am – 5 pm. Closed Wed). The tour is included with Museum admission and no advanced registration is required. Tours begin at the Museum front desk. Learn more here.

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