I am a Kiwi transplanted to the Chicago suburbs, always up for an outing that involves food, art or animals. Visit me at www.thebunnyhugger.com.
Every year for just one day Cantigny Park in Elgin opens to dog owners. My two dogs had a great day meeting other dogs in the temporary dog park and roaming the beautifully landscaped gardens wearing their colorful complimentary bandannas. I also enjoyed the stalls, performances, and displays of art and old military tanks - I even saw a wild turkey!
There is a great brunch place called Le Jardin and on the Dog Day dogs are welcome in the outdoor dining area, and get a free dog biscuit. Mark your calendar for the first Saturday in August: Cantingy Park, 1S151 Winfield Road, Wheaton, Illinois, 60189.
Remember to take bags for cleaning up after your dog and ensure your dog has a current rabies tags on their collar. Dogs must be kept on leash except in the temporary dog park areas (there is one for small dogs and one for large dogs).
Also take lots of water. The weather is scorching at this time of year so even if you don't need it, your dogs will!