Heading to Chicago! What Should I See?

I’ll be in Chicago from May 11-17 next year for vacation. It’s my 3rd time, 2nd as an adult. I’d love opinions on what to see and do. I like cultural stuff (art museums, great bookstores, etc.) and looooooooove the blues! (I want to visit Buddy Guy’s place at least once.)

What else you got for me?!?!

I’m going to Chicago for the weekend: July 28 - 30. It’s my first trip to the Windy City and I’ll be glad to post back with how it went.

Hope both of you enjoy your trips. There’ve been a few of these threads before, and I’ve responded to 2 or 3. A search on my username and “chicago” should find them. I recall at least one of them having lots of good suggestions.)

(sorry… in a bit of a hurry at the moment - still at work)

Museum of Science and Industry.

If you’re really keen on seeing the city from above, head to the Signature Room and Lounge (on the 95th and 96th floors of the John Hancock Building, respectively). Yes, the Sears Tower may have its own zip code (60606) and its Skydeck Observatory may be higher up, but that isn’t saying much in terms of overall appeal. Although it is cool to be at the top of the tallest building in the country and learn a lot about the history behind it while you’re there, the view (IMHO) is arguably not as engaging as it is from further north in the city. The view to the south of the Sears Tower is an abandoned wasteland of trainyards, smokestacks, and industrial property that looks condemned. The skyline literally stops south of there. I guess anything is cool to look at when you’re that high up, but it’s a $10 ticket and a lot of waiting in line. The entire venue has an aura of touristy cheapness to it, whereas the Signature Room is just class. If you can only visit one of the two, take my advice and avoid the Skydeck. If you have time to do both, go to the Sears Tower during the day and head to the Signature Room at night. You can sit down, relax, have a few drinks and a nice dinner … sure, it’s a tad pricey but not anymore so than most decent places, and you get a better view of the majority of Chicago’s Loop without feeling like you’re being fed through a crowded, plasticky exhibit. Just because the building is a few stories shorter doesn’t mean the experience is second-rate!

Don’t forget to swallow on the way up, those elevators are fast. :wink:


I’m assuming that this is a quote from the article?

Anyway, I have some access to Illinois legal databases. I found no reported Illinois case that contains both the words “Cessna” and “Bonanza”

(This statement needs one qualification and one explanation. The qualification: I used a database that is reasonably up to date, but not absolutely up to date. If the appellate opinion is very new (like last week), I may not have picked it up. The first explantion: All trial court level decisions and some appellate level decisions are not “reported” in Illinois, which means there are not published in books, or the usual databases. I have not used the best available database, because there’s a cost.)

Anyway, do you have any more information on the case? There are some more places I can check if I have more data. (Names of parties and a date of ruling would be most helpful. I’m guessing this originated in the Circuit Court of Cook County (Meigs, and the plaintiff;s attorney would have been insane to choose a suburban county, even if venus were proper.)

Wow, I hardly know what I’m going to be doing next month. I’ll throw out Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind.

If you didn’t go to the Art Institute of Chicago on your last trip, definitely go this time. Great collections of Impressionists and 20th Century artists, just for a start. In May the weather should be glorious, so a stroll through Millenium Park would be nice (they’re both in the same neighborhood, too). Take a historical/architectural tour by boat from Navy Pier. The Museum Campus has the Field Museum, Adler Planetarium and Shedd Aquarium all close together.

That’s a good start, I think. Have fun!

What are the best places to get an authentic Chicago-style hot dog?

I second the Signature Lounge, Museum of Science and Industry and Art Institute. I’m not the most educated art person, but I enjoyed seeing all of the incredibly important and well known peiced they have. Several times I thought to myself "Man, this looks much cooler than it did in my Art History textbook. :stuck_out_tongue:

Even if you’re not a baseball fan, go see a Cub’s game, regular seat, not bleachers. It’s not too expensive, and the old stadium is just magical somehow. There’s talk that they might take it down to build a new stadium for Chicago’s Olympic bid, so you could be among the last to see it.

Go for deep dish pizza at Uno’s or Duo’s or something. I’m sure you can find threads on here vigorously debating the relative merits of different pizza places.

Figure out the L and ride it. Look out the window and marvel at how the neighborhoods change from block to block. It still fascinates me, after years of living here and commuting every day.

Take at least one taxi ride at night up Lake Shore Drive, at night. Tall lighted buildings on one side, unbroken lake view on the other - awesome.

The Field Museum is awesome and should not be missed. I could have spent a week in there. It’s billed as a Natural History museum, but they’ve got a fabulous Egyptian exhibit (including a replica “tomb” into which you descend to look at the masses of beautiful treasures on display) and an impressive amount of Native American artifacts. Plus, you get to see Sue!

About the pizza, Uno’s & Due’s sold out years ago in terms of remaining true to their roots. The original Uno’s invented deep dish, and the original location has essentially gone unchanged for over 60 years, but in the last ten years they’ve franchised the business worldwide. Franchise restaurants broadened their menus and altered the name to “Uno’s Bar & Grill” to appeal to the sports, beer and nuts crowd … it just seems like a slap in the face of heritage to me. They’re like the McDonald’s/KFC/Taco Bell of deep dish pizza now. Just look at their website. Ordinarily, I would say to just head to Due’s on Wabash, but they are really the same operation, and the restraurants, by some standards, have even faced flak from pizza loyalists over changes to the recipe and presentation of the famous za ever since they started becoming a sprawling restaurant chain. Not sure that makes the pizza any worse, but there are also the wait times which will test your patience …

There are so many great pizza places to go that are less crowded and haven’t greedily capitalized on their name to make more money in foreign markets. Try Malnati’s, Edwardo’s or Gino’s for a more traditional hometown franchise. Malnati’s is a personal fave, and Edwardo’s has a rather unique character to its deep dish. If you’re dead set on getting some deep dish in the River North area, there are plenty of non-franchise pizzerias that are more traditional. No matter where you go, you’ll get good pizza, but the long waits and change in the nature of business operations at Uno’s/Due’s over the years just equate to another sell-out tourist attraction in my book. I don’t like going to them anymore. :frowning:

If I had the time, I would definitely take in the Field and/or the Museum of Science and Industry.

Of course, one should always drop by the park acrosss the street from 11 East Illinois Street, Chicago, IL 6061 and salaam the source of The Master’s epistles.

Superdawg or Fluky’s.

I forgot to add, I have to agree with everything anamnesis said about Pizza - forget Uno and Due (sold out isn’t the WORD for it - I’ll look back to see if I can find some of the columns some local reporters have written about it - they’re in agreement too) - try one of his picks or Gino’s (my personal favorite)

Actually, athough Superdawg is probably the coolest hotdog stand in Chicago, and very tasty, it is not representative of a true “chicago style” dog, as they don’t cook it the same way or put the same ingredients on it. Fluky’s does make the classic chicago style, though…or go anywhere you see a yellow Vienna Beef sign, and you should be good.

If you want more of a real street taste with your dawg, head to The Weiner’s Circle (somewhere around 2500 North Clark) for a late-late-night dawg and a dose of Chicago attitude. Be sure to arrive with headgear, and if possible, partially inebriated. :smiley: And do try to get your order right the first time … the girls there will not coddle you at all. That place is hilarious. Consider it an indoctrination to becoming a true Chicagoan. :wink:

You’d be the envy of geeks everywhere if you took a Segway Tour.

Segway Tour? You’ll be the envy of nobody, and laughed at by everybody. The Segway: an engineering feat which became one more excuse for people with too much money and not enough exercise to stay that way. Heaven forbid the people in those site photos actually go on a walking tour … :rolleyes: Sorry, can’t help it, the only people I ever see on those contraptions are people who could stand to benefit from the limited exercise even a walk provides. Combine that with the fact that you’re constantly stared at not out of envy, but because it’s just silly and pretentious to be seen on one. Even the big security guys at Millenium Park look silly on them, but at least they put them to good use to get around quickly. Whatever happened to bicycle cops? One of the few Segway riders I ever encountered came straight at me while on my bike and refused to make more than an extra two inches of room on the sidewalk for me to get by. Guess what? He was a fat, pasty-white guy, in addition to being pretentious and incosiderate. Imagine that.

Don’t do it! Go out to Navy Pier and take a lakeside tour on one of the Seadog open-air cruiser boats. Twin 1,000 horsepower engines give those things some real scoot. If speed ain’t your thing, there are no shortage of slower riverboat tours that are just as fun.

I’m afraid we’re going to have to agree to disagree anamnesis. IMHO, the purpose of a vacation is doing things that you wouldn’t/couldn’t normally do. Would I buy a Segway to get around town? No way. Would I blow $70 for 3 hours on one on vacation? In a heartbeat, even though some of the natives might laugh at my fat, pasty-white butt.