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Arts + Culture

Where to Dance Outside

Because who doesn’t love dancing in the moonlight?

See recent posts by April Ellis

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SummerDance, Chicago

From June to September, Chicago’s Grant Park comes alive with the sounds of music. At Summerdance, a free public event, 43 live bands jam out while crowds jive to the tunes. There are also free lessons to teach newcomers how to tango, swing and salsa the summer away.

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Midsummer Night Swing, NYC

Each year Lincoln Center hosts two back-to-back festivals in its main plaza: Midsummer Night Swing (on its 28th turn) and Out of Doors, which has been running for 45 seasons. The first teaches dancers the lindy hop and swing to live jazz music, while the second is a concert series showcasing all genres from orchestral to old-school rap.

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Barrel Room, Portland, OR

Portland may be the master at keeping it weird, but they also know how to shake it up. Head to Barrel Room for dueling pianos and live bands as well as an impressive patio that transforms into a casual dance area. And the party doesn’t end when winter comes; a huge tent is set up over the courtyard, so you can dance until dawn all year long.

RELATED: 35 Things to Do for Free in Portland, OR

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Morgan’s Pier, Philadelphia

Philly knows how to get down and Morgan’s Pier is the place to do it. Its outdoor beer garden on the Delaware River has a massive dance floor that hosts DJs throughout the week and a Yacht rock party of ‘70s and ‘80s music on Sundays. Plus, there are fun games like bean bag toss and chill picnic tables where you can sit and sip craft brews. Need we say more?

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Dance Downtown, LA

As part of The Music Center, Dance Downtown offers al fresco classes to those looking to learn a few moves. Next up this summer: Samba night on August 19 and Disco dancing on September 2. Every other Friday DJs spin for those who prefer to boogie freestyle.

RELATED: 79 Things to Do for Free in LA

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Fifty Ultra Lounge, Miami

This swank club at the top of W Miami’s (formerly Viceroy Miami) South Beach skyscraper is one of the sexiest places to dance under the stars. Poolside parties, celeb DJs and stiletto-wearing PYTs set the scene, but the views steal the show. When you need to give your feet a break, grab a cocktail and look out over the coast. Trust us, it’s so much better than a sweaty, packed bar.

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Cavanaugh’s Riverdeck, Philadelphia

If you’re into more high-octane clubs, look no further than Cavanaugh’s Riverdeck. Throughout the summer, the al fresco venue hosts guest DJs and themed events (including foam parties and mechanical bull rides). Bonus: You don’t even have to break the bank thanks to deals like Mug night (buy a mug and fill it up for $1), Island vibes Caribbean night and Thursday college night ($10 open bar). We repeat: open bar, people!

RELATED: 72 Hours in Philadelphia

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