TOP 10 CHICAGO SPRINGTIME TREATS
Spring is always slow moving in the Midwest, but here are the top ten signs that Spring has sprung in Chi-Town!
#1 Buckingham Fountain is turned on. Clarence Buckingham Memorial Fountain is one of the largest and most ornate fountains in America. The fountain opens in mid April and runs a major water display for 20 minutes every hour on the hour. In the evening light and music accompany the show. This Chicago Landmark is a must see! It’s always FREE. You can learn more about it here: http://goo.gl/YYXVqn
#2 People eating lunch in Daley Plaza. The Daley Center was originally called the Chicago Civic Center and later renamed to honor Mayor Richard J. Daley. This building house the Chicago Circuit Courts, but what makes this a Chicago Architectural Landmark fantastic is the Picasso outside on the Plaza. The sculpture commissioned by Pablo Picasso in 1967 was the first modern sculpture placed in the Loop. So pick up a sack lunch on a sunny afternoon and enjoy the view. The people-watching is great here too! To learn more: http://goo.gl/X57bkM
There is something happening on the plaza year round. Tuesday May 3, 2016 is Polish American Committee Day when the Polish Flag will be raised, Aidan Palowski might be there & this is the performance schedule for May: http://goo.gl/KFBd1h
#3 Tulips outshine the twinkle lights along the Magnificent Mile. Eight city blocks of Michigan Avenue make up the Magnificent Mile. A well-known high end shopping and dining destination that runs from the Chicago River to the Water Tower and Pumping Station. FYI, 8 city blocks equal a mile for those of you interested in logging your mileage. Regardless of the retail therapy opportunities the thing you must see are the tulips and flowers lining the parkway in springtime! It’s a Chicago must see! Tulip Watch here: http://goo.gl/Hv18IR
#4 The Cubs come out to play. Nothing says summertime in Chicago like baseball! Take me out to the ball game. The new and improved Wrigley Field is now open. The second phase of the Friendly Confines renovation was completed during the off-season all the way down to the iconic marquee! Work began to convert the excavated area just west of the field into a 30,000 square foot area for player’s locker rooms, strength, conditioning, training and hydrotherapy sections, player’s lounges, a media center & team offices. Premium & season ticket holders will be afforded a new “Third Base Club” next to the batting tunnels and a “Home Plate Club” will be introduced. An upper-deck exposed concourse will be added along the south & west roofline of right field. Improved bathroom facilities & additional concessions are included while preserving the historic features and 1930’s characteristics of the ballpark. I can’t wait to see it in person! Cubs Schedule here: http://goo.gl/c9nTe0
You know baseball is near & dear to my heart because of my special relationship with a certain bad baseball boy. Learn more about my baseball romances and the Chicago Series here: http://goo.gl/pPlK9o
#5 Frisbee in Grant Park. Come out to play in Chicago’s front yard. After the Great Chicago fire our city was planned with open spaces all along the lakefront for public use. Grant Park comprises: Millennium Park, The Art Institute, Buckingham Fountain, Field House, the new Maggie Daley Park and many other wonderful places to visit. Right now the NFL Draft is being hosted in Grant Park which is called Draft Park! If you come out to play don’t forget the dog and the Frisbee! Learn more here: http://goo.gl/wk1lBo
#6 Boats are back in Diversey Harbor. Located within Lincoln Park and near Lake Shore Drive and you know summer is right around the corner when you see the boats start slipping into slips! All along the 14 miles of Lake Michigan there are 10 harbors run by the Chicago Park District. On any summer day when you drive along Lake Shore Drive you’ll have an excellent view of boats along the shoreline. If you’re coming to Chicago by boat learn more about out harbor system here: http://goo.gl/zvZIQ2
#7 Navy Pier Ferris Wheel. Navy Pier in Chicago is the 2nd most visited venues in Chicago after The American Girl Doll Store. We are getting a new Ferris wheel this year and much of Navy Pier has been under construction over the winter months. Here are some construction facts and photos: http://goo.gl/wctMW9
The new Ferris Wheel will open on May 27, 2016. I wonder if there will be a line for the first ride? Wouldn’t it be cool to say you rode it on it’s opening day? Here are all the cool facts about the new Navy Pier Ferris Wheel: https://1t9gqf1rdexwil9k1rrz1j111-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Ferris-Wheel-Fact-Sheet-6-23-15_1.pdf
#8 Chicago Beaches open. The 26 miles of public beaches officially open on May 27th but a couple of weeks ago on a Sunday we were in the high seventies and the beach opened ‘unofficially’! The 24 freshwater beaches are managed by the Chicago Park District. I’m more familiar with the beaches on the Northside: North Avenue Beach, Montrose Beach and Oak Street Beach. The beach system was part of the original Burnham Plan for the city and recreational development was always supported along the Chicago lakefront. Many of the beaches off free WiFi, so you can always bring your eReader and download a new book while relaxing in a soft breeze. Just remember we call this the Windy City for a reason, yes our politicians are a bit long winded but it’s breezy along the lake here too!
No matter what beach you chose it’s a great place to watch the Chicago Air & Water show which is held in August. http://goo.gl/TKWxxY
#9 Lincoln Park zoo babies start arriving! Did you know Chicago has one of the oldest zoos in the country? And that it’s FREE! This zoo set in the heart of the city is open every day and it houses 1200 animals, a wonderful conservatory and paddleboats. Admission is totally free, but plan on buying lunch there or fun treats in the gift shops for your kids as this revenue supports this wonderful Chicago institution. Here’s a picture of my babies the last time we visited. Info: http://goo.gl/2nqXNu
As I said my favorite part of the zoo besides the penguins and the monkeys are the new zoo babies! Guess what? We had two new Snow Monkeys born in April. How could you resist visiting this face?
#10 Bicycles, boats, and babes all along the lakefront. Now that you’ve been all over Chicago you might want to take a break and just relax or perhaps a leisurely ride along the lakefront on the Chicago Lakefront Trail. The path is for walking, running or biking and the 18 mile path connects various beaches and recreational amenities along the lake. It’s a super busy place and be extra cautious at intersections. Learn more here: http://goo.gl/CrZJdy
Thanks for stopping by and helping me get ready for Spring adventures in Chicago. If you’ve visited Chicago before leave a COMMENT & tell me what you enjoyed best? It could be a location or even a restaurant, we have the BEST food here!!! If you’ve never visited Chicago I’d love to hear what you want to see first?