CHICAGO
03/02/2012 02:45 pm ET

Chicago Weekend Plans: Shopping Cart Races, Polar Plunges And Chicago's 175th Birthday (3/2-3/4)

Just because Rosie might be over it doesn't mean we've had enough of Chicago. City pride this week is high, and not just for whoever's about to scoop up Michael Jordan's mansion: even President Obama has been showing support for the Windy City in the past few days. Just because you're saving up for Pitchfork tickets doesn't mean you should stay home this weekend; hit up some of the great events happening this weekend.

ALL WEEKEND
Chicago Irish Film Festival
Whether you're Irish or not, you'll no doubt be celebrating the country's culture a few weeks from now. Sponsored by the Irish Consulate of Chicago, the weeklong festival will showcase films by Irish filmmakers, and about topics unique to the culture.
Where: The Beverly Arts Center of Chicago, 2407 West 111th St., Chicago
When: Times Vary, Friday, March 2 - Wednesday, March 7
Price: Passes $65, Individual screenings $10 each

FRIDAY
The Laramie Project: Ten Years Later
Ten years after "The Laramie Project" launched a nationwide dialogue about the death of Matthew Shepard, the Red Twist Theatre is presenting an epilogue that reexamines one of the most-produced plays in the U.S.: "The Laramie Project: Ten Years Later (Epilogue)." Preview the new play Friday at a discounted price.
Where: Red Twist Theatre, 1044 W. Bryn Mawr Ave., Chicago
When: 3 p.m. Friday, March 2
Price: $15

SATURDAY
Chicago's 175th Birthday Party
If there's one birthday party you shouldn't miss this year, it's the party celebrating the city that's hosted so many of your birthday fetes. Rockit Ranch Productions and entertainment blog aChicagoThing.com will throw a birthday bash for the city Saturday, with all proceeds benefitting the Greater Chicago Food Depository. Nibble on Chicago-themed snacks and drinks and rub elbows with some local notables.
Where: Rockit Bar & Grill, 22 W. Hubbard St., Chicago
When: 8 p.m. - 10 p.m. Saturday, March 3
Price: $20

Chiditirod
In Alaska, the Iditarod is a long-distance race led by sled dogs. In Chicago, the Chiditarod combines costumes, pub crawling and shopping cart races to help raise money for local nonprofit Growing Home. Spectators are welcome to watch wacky Chicago do-gooders race through the streets for a cause.
Where: Hubbard & Wolcott, Chicago
When: 12:30 p.m. Saturday, March 3
Price: Free

SUNDAY
Extended Restaurant Week Special
Did you miss out on Chicago Restaurant Week this year? We bet you're bummed about it. But wait! Hope remains! One of this year's participating restaurants, Mercadito, is bringing back the prix fixe menu (and prices!) from restaurant week on Sunday.
Where: Mercadito, 108 W. Kinzie St., Chicago
When: 11:30 a.m. Sunday, March 4 - 12 a.m. Monday, March 5
Price: lunch $22, dinner $33

Chicago Polar Plunge
Chicago's been blessed with a warm winter this year; so why not pack a season's full of chilliness into a few minutes for charity? That's the logic behind the 12th Annual Chicago Polar Plunge this Sunday. Participants who've each raised $125 to support Special Olympics Chicago will leap into Lake Michigan at North Avenue Beach.
Where: North Avenue and Lake Shore Drive, Chicago
When: 10 a.m. Sunday, March 4
Price: Fundraising required

THE WEEK AHEAD
A Benefit for Kristen
A recent tragedy in Wicker Park has brought the neighborhood together to fundraise for Kristen Romaniszak, who was stabbed during a robbery attempt while on the job at Asrai Garden. Double Door is hosting a fundraiser organized by the flower shop's owner, which will include live music and a raffle stocked with prizes donated by local businesses.
Where: Double Door, 1572 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago
When: 6:30 p.m. Monday, March 5
Price: $10

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