The Best Things to Do This Week, According to Our Editors: June 14

Fireworks, must-taste burgers and more in this week’s editor picks

1. Get on a Boat and Check Out the Weekly Hoan Bridge Light Show


Every Saturday at 9 p.m., the Hoan’s $4.6 million light array comes alive to amazing effect, synced to a playlist curated by DJ Kenny Perez and broadcast on 88Nine. And last weekend I discovered there’s no better place to watch it than from a pontoon boat on the inner harbor. The coordinated fireworks were icing on an already spectacular cake.

2. Return to the SafeHouse


Last week I had a chance to return to the SafeHouse. The restaurant/bar was as delightfully odd as my last “mission” there many years ago. I can’t share with you the passcode to get in (that’s classified), but I can recommend you order the Tradecraft tacos. They’re delicious. 

Photo by Rebecca Kames

3. Eat a Burger at Bavette


 A vivid olfactory memory from my childhood is the aroma of burgers cooking on a Weber charcoal grill. I love burgers of all kinds but I get especially excited when the grill comes out and beef patties meet the grate. One of my favorites to enjoy in a restaurant comes courtesy of Bavette’s Wednesday Burger Night (which happens every week as long as the weather cooperates). The grass-fed beef patty is so juicy, and each week, owner Karen Bell features a different set of toppings. One I had recently was covered in bacon, arugula, blue cheese and tomato jam. Sensational! (330 E. Menomonee St., Third Ward)

4. Catch Up on “I Think You Should Leave”


I just started watching the sketch show “I Think You Should Leave,” and I’m obsessed with it. Its first season didn’t get nearly as much attention as it deserved. But maybe its second (premiering on Netflix on July 6) will. Also, I have a vague memory of seeing the creator, Tim Robinson, perform in a free show in a Chicago bar about a decade ago, before he joined the cast of SNL. And I feel very cool because of it.


5. Listen to Been Listening by Johnny Flynn


Johnny Flynn is a singer-songwriter from the U.K. His first album, A Larum, made a splash when it debuted in 2008, but I think his 2010 followup, Been Listening, was even better. He has a distinct folk sound, a great voice, and his lyrics are dense with allusion. His most recent album Lost in the Cedar Wood, was released just as of a few weeks ago. It was written in collaboration with Robert Macfarlane, a nature writer. The collaboration makes sense as much of Flynn’s songs have to do with the effect place exerts on someone, the way the history of the earth we walk on shape’s our being. It also sounds good. A few personal standouts for me would be “The Water,” a beautiful melodic duet, “Sweet William Part 2” which really gets the feet moving, and “Lost and Found” which is a great start-of-the-morning sort of tune. If you have any interest in folky music, Flynn is a must.