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Old 01-31-2010, 11:04 AM  
BigRedChief BigRedChief is offline
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Going to Chicago. What do I need to do? Avoid?

Going to Chicago for a little 4 day vacation(Thrusday - Sunday) on spring break. Going to the Bulls vs. Cleveland NBA game and see Lebron, Derrick Rose, Shaq etc on Friday night. What is the can't miss "stuff" in Chicago? Avoid? opinions welcome...

Staying downtown at the Allerton hotel.

Any Planeteers want to get together?
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03/22/2010 edit to pay it forward for future chicago visitors:
Transportation:
Definitely take the trains and bus’s if you are planning to spend a lot of time downtown. We saved a fortune in cabs. Get the CTA pass and you can get on how ever many buses, trains, transfers etc that you want for how many days you purchase. http://faremedia.chicago-card.com/store/main.aspx?DepartmentId=34 Check the schedule and plan your route out:
http://www.transitchicago.com/travel_information/maps/default.aspxhttp://www.transitchicago.com/riding_cta/populardestinations.aspx

We arrived at 8:00 at the O’Hara airport and not taking the train would have been a disaster. They highways are parking lots that time of the day. We flew out of Midway on the way out and took a cab out there to the airport.
We really enjoyed riding the bus’s and talking to the locals. They gave us great tips on where to eat etc.

You don’t need a car. If you are driving, there is no where to park and where there is parking is very expensive and driving downtown is dangerous trying to navigate all those cabs and buses? Not for the weak of heart.

Attractions:
Get the Go Chicago card: Saved us a ton of money on admission fees but more importantly we avoided the lines at the attractions to get tickets. It was snowing and the line to get into the Field museum was over an hour and a half to just get tickets to get into the museum. The lines to get tickets are long. Get your tickets in advance.
http://www.smartdestinations.com/chicago-attractions-and-tours/_d_Chi-p1.html?pass=Chi_Prod_Go

Sears Tower: Was cool but if you have to wait an hour or two? Question the value. The ledge is really cool. Nothing between you and the street 103 stories up but some Plexiglas. It’s an experience you can’t get anywhere else in the world.

John Hancock observatory: We actually liked it better than the Sears tower because of the better ocean and beach views. They have something cool there, a skywalk 93 stories up that you can walk along that is exposed to the wind, temperatures etc 93 floors up. Just some mesh screen between you and the sky.

Science and Industry museum: We all felt that this was the best of all the museums. You have to see the U-Boat. It’s another one of those you can only experience in Chicago things.

Millennium Park: The silver bean was really cool. Seems like a real simple thing but once you get there and see it up close you understand the draw the bean has for people. Make sure you go underneath the bean and check it out. Looks like a wonderful place to watch a concert.

Shedd Aquarium: We were disappointed in this one. Maybe we are just spoiled but we thought the Aquarium in Omaha was much better.

The Field museum: Another disappointment. Sue the T-Rex was really cool but the rest of the museum left us flat. Seemed really educational for kids but for us adults we would like to have seen more exhibits than some pottery.

Chicago Bulls game: We decided to take the bus out there. Straight shot to and from downtown. Not really a bad seat in the house. The mascot seems to be pretty athletic and entertaining. Highly recommend getting one of the monster dogs.

Navy Pier: We went there and it was cold. Looks like a great place to visit in the warm weather.

Second City: We saw “Rush Limbaugh, the musical”. Barney Frank, Hillary, Dancing Ronald Reagan’s…Very funny stuff. Had a bit in there when Rush with the Royals and George Brett on a toilet with hemorrhoids. Highly recommend checking out a show there.

The Art Institute: A wonderful place to see art. So many Picasso’s, Monet’s and Van Gough’s you can’t really appreciate them fully like if some were here in KC just because of the sheer volume of masterpieces in one place. Very impressive collection. We also enjoyed seeing the American Gothic and some American art.
http://www.artic.edu/aic/

Eats:
Ginos East: Great pizza. Love the crust. We went to the one on Shapiro and it has all the walls filled with customer graffiti. Not living off its past reputation. My son thought it was the best pizza ever.

Giordanos: on Shapiro, Excellent deep dish pizza here also. Better than anything you can get in KC. Try sprinkling a little Italian herb seasoning on the pizza here.
http://www.giordanos.com/locations.html

West Egg: Breakfast by the doubletree. Reasonable prices and great food. Everything we had was good.
http://www.yelp.com/biz/west-egg-cafe-chicago-2

Yokes: Breakfast on Lake Shore drive. Best crepes we have ever had. Very good food.
http://www.yelp.com/biz/yolk-chicago-2

Quaritinos: Best meal in Chicago. Very trendy and hip place but don’t let that push you away. You order 5-6 things and share them. Ravioli, Brusheta and the Bananas foster desert were our favorites but everything we had was real flavorful and well prepared. http://www.quartinochicago.com/


Lodging:
We stayed at the Allerton hotel downtown. I would highly recommend if you are coming to Chicago and you are going to do these things listed above to stay downtown. This was a great hotel. If you can’t afford the downtown rates just take the train into the city and go from there.

Last edited by BigRedChief; 03-22-2010 at 11:07 AM..
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:18 PM   #91
Der Flöprer Der Flöprer is offline
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just got back from out of town at a wedding. By the time the reception began, they had the game on in the next room and it was already in OT.

and i did pick a winner. I said I thought KU should win.

And no im not going to look for the post.
Hey, I'm not hating on you here. I was just curious. I looked through the thread for one but didn't see it.
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:20 PM   #92
CoMoChief CoMoChief is offline
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Where's old town?
Northside. Near Lincoln Park area.
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:21 PM   #93
CoMoChief CoMoChief is offline
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Originally Posted by Mr. Flopnuts View Post
Hey, I'm not hating on you here. I was just curious. I looked through the thread for one but didn't see it.
It may be in the EMAW thread then. I can't remember.
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Old 01-31-2010, 08:23 PM   #94
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Hey, I'm not hating on you here. I was just curious. I looked through the thread for one but didn't see it.
I saw it.
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Old 02-01-2010, 07:19 AM   #95
BigRedChief BigRedChief is offline
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Did I say Reza's restaurant?
Where's that at?
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:46 AM   #96
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Where's that at?
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&s...eza+restaurant
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:50 AM   #97
Sfeihc Sfeihc is offline
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BRC, you're in for a great time. Chicago is a paradise for someone with a zest for life like yourself. Great restaurants abound for all tastes. My advice avoid the chains, very touristy. Have fun and give us a full report.
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Old 02-01-2010, 09:58 AM   #98
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lots of great info here. im going in early march to see muse at the united center, cant wait!!!
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whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.whatsmynameagain < Tried to steal Andy's chili fries.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:09 AM   #99
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Wrigleyville (bar district, college age)
Sears Tower
Michigan Ave
ESPN Zone
Rush St and Old Town (bar district)
Second City (in Old Town, comedy club)
Field Museum
Science Museum
Good list.

If you know a little art appreciation don't miss the Art Museum. Most people really like the Science Museum, but when I lived there my family liked the Field Museum the best.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:09 AM   #100
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Avoid hotels by that river. A friend of mine had a college age son go there for some kind of seminar or something and left one hotel to go to another next door and that's the last time anyone has seen him. And that was, I think, in 2006.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:13 AM   #101
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lots of great info here. im going in early march to see muse at the united center, cant wait!!!
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I headed to the Windy City in early Feb. as well for a couple of Furthur shows. Last time I was in Chicago was last summer to see Phish and they debuted a song called "Windy City". I love that town.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:17 AM   #102
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Another thing - if you drive up here, be warned that Chicago sold control of its parking meters to a private company, and in turn that company jacked up rates. There are meters everywhere in the downtown area, they're annoying and expensive, and you'll get ticketed/towed in a heartbeat if they expire or you park in a no parking zone. They don't **** around with it. The only alternative is parking in a garage, but you'll still get raped - the average price is around $30 a day. Better to use public transportation.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:40 AM   #103
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Don't waste your time on Navy Pier. Marginal in the warmer months, it would be worthless now. Shedd Aquarium I've heard is also iffy.
The Shedd is worth every cent you spend there if you like fish and stuff like that. My wife and I loved it. The Beluga whales were cool as hell. The place is massive with lots of cool stuff.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:42 AM   #104
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I went to Chicago about a year ago to see the Fray / Vedera concert at the Metro. Stayed at the Hyatt by the river. The weidest part was a huge protest by what appeared to be a large group of Muslims in front of our hotel. I never figured out why. I was going to ask one of the rabbi's who were in our hotel for some sort of Jewsh convention but they all looked busy.
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Old 02-01-2010, 10:45 AM   #105
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The Shedd is worth every cent you spend there if you like fish and stuff like that. My wife and I loved it. The Beluga whales were cool as hell. The place is massive with lots of cool stuff.
Meh. The bastards confiscated my fishing pole on the way in. I'll never go back.



Seriously. They have a restraining order against me now.
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