Gardens, free stuff, dancing and laughing

Get some fresh air today by joining a free garden tour at the Lincoln Park Zoo (2001 N. Clark). Every second Saturday, a staff horticulturist leads groups through the zoo’s gardens, identifying what’s in bloom, noting the fauna that is attractive to pollinators and animals, and answering questions about our natural environment. Summer tours focus on prairie flowers, but will cover other things as well. Tours run from 10-11am and start at the Café Brauer gate (2021 N. Stockton). Make sure to get there early or late, as the tours are limited to 15 people! Does not it work? Lincoln Park Zoo offers this free card for self-guided tours. (MC)

The Chicago Tool Library partners with Plant Chicago to create a exchange free stuff at their farmers’ market in Davis Square Park (4459 S. Marshfield). Whether you’re downsizing or looking for something to spend hard money on, they want to see you. This is an opportunity to redistribute resources within the community! Bring or bring clothes, sports equipment, games, kitchen appliances and more. It takes place from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. (MC)

Dancing for life is hosting its 31st annual fundraiser tonight at 6 p.m. at the Auditorium Theater (50 E. Ida B. Wells), bringing together artists and companies from across the city to support Chicago Dancers United, a nonprofit that provides funds for preventive health care and critical medical needs of dance professionals. Some highlights of this year’s performances include contemporary hip-hop group Chicago Dance Crash, which will be previewing us vs theman excerpt from their upcoming 20th anniversary piece Booms Day, choreographed by Annie Franklin to music by Man From Sol, Jonah k and Overlook; Deep-rooted dance theaters Parallel Liveschoreographed by co-founder and associate artistic director Gary Abbott to original music by Evangelos Spanos, based on The Folia (one of the oldest remembered European folk themes) and portraying the lives of poor women sharing stories of life-changing events; NAJWA Dance Corps with a trio of pieces inspired by the music and rituals of West African tribes presented as The Guinea Suite, choreographed by Mouminato Camara to live percussion; and work by jazz company Giordano Dance Chicago, Trinity Irish Dance Company, the Joffrey Ballet and Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater. In addition, Randy Duncan choreographs a world premiere finale, Never enoughwith music by Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (Dear Evan Hansen) and additional music by Andy Mitran, featuring dancers from around the Chicago area. Tickets for the performance are $25-$125; if you’re feeling extra generous/luxurious, you can pay $500 for the performance and afterparty at venue SIX10 (610 S. Michigan); 312-341-2300 or auditoriumtheatre.org. (KR)

If you’d rather dance outside, Links Hall’s Dance the walk maybe your ticket (besides it’s actually free!) Meet at the Confluence on the Riverwalk near Franklin and Lake at noon for this double-headed full of community workshops and performances. First there is Arabic dance with musician and folk dancer Karim Nagi. At 1pm, Nagi will join Dawn Xiana Moon and Raks Geek, specialists in belly dance, flow arts and firespinning (who also performed Friday at Newport Theater), along with multidisciplinary artist Ále Campos (performing as Celeste). All performances include ASL interpretation and reservations are not required, but more information can be found at linkshall.org. (KR)

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