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Sightseeing in Chicago

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cookingabcs

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Any suggestions of things not to miss when sightseeing in Chicago? I'm going a day early to walk around town and don't know anything about Chicago other than Oprah :p

Thanks for the suggestions.
 
Oct 21, 2005
23
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The Cheese Cake Factory!

I just love the whole Magnificent Mile! If you like to shop, you could spend your entire day just going up and down and browsing through all the awesome shops! I come from a relatively rural area so all the restaurants (like The Cheese Cake Factory) and the shops are a real treat!

One year I spent my free time at the Navy Pier in the evening. Again, many shops, an art museum last year and fireworks at night.

The Magnificent Mile and the Navy Pier are both within walking distance of Conference Hotels. So far, that's all I've done. The first year I went I contacted the Oprah show and found out they don't tape during the summer months - BUMMER!!
 

lacychef

Legend Member
Feb 15, 2006
5,800
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I'm hoping to do the same! My director said the Shedd Aquarium is great. Our cluster is also thinking about doing a dinner cruise on the lake. I want to check out Navy Pier also. It would be fun to see the city from the top of the Sears tower too!
Last year we didn't go early enough, we only had time to walk up Michigan Ave. the magnificant mile of shopping! There's every store you can imagine if shopping is your thing. We mostly window-shopped & ate at the Cheesecake Factory. Although we did happen upon a film crew shooting the movie 'the breakup' with Jennifer Anniston & Vince Vaughn-and walked right in front of Vince:D That was pretty cool, but it happened too fast for us to even get pictures. (the movie is coming out this month)
There's lots to do, just do a search on 'chicago tourism' and you'll get lots of info!
 

chefjeanine

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Jan 19, 2006
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Sooner PC said:
My SIL got us tickets to "Wicked" - so that is what I am doing one night.

You'll love it. :) DH got tickets for my Christmas present. Have you read the book? It is different from the book but a lot of fun. Enjoy!!

As far as sight seeing. . .I'm always so pooped out I just head off for bed after the day's scheduled events. More power to you if you can stay awake that long.
 

Lisa/ChefBear

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Jun 24, 2005
1,294
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You probably won't see Oprah, as when my friends tried last year to schedule to go early to conference, we were told, that's then Oprah's on vacation and not filming :(

I'd LOVE to see her and just be there for a show, but no such luck unless she changes her schedule to suit all of ours, lol.

Lisa
 

ckmom002

Member
Nov 12, 2005
93
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im origanally from chicago everything that everyone has said are really good things to see and do. i think you could spend a whole week there and not see everything. The dinner Cruises are really nice i have been on one. I hope you all have a great time i cant go bc i dont have anyone to watch my kids when i am gone. Maybe next year...
 

The_Kitchen_Guy

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Nov 4, 2005
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There is a terrific river/harbor tour that departs from a pier on Michigan Avenue at the bridge. They take you downriver as far as the AT&T building, then turn around, take you through the lock into the harbor, and you get to see Chicago's skyline from the lake. The guide also gives you an ongoing monolog of the buildings along the way, the Chicago School of Architecture and the important history of the buildings and the river along the way.

It's a great tour!

(Yes - you have to go through a lock to get into the harbor. The flow direction of the Chicago River was reversed a little over 100 years ago and it flows OUT of Lake Michigan.)
 

soonerchef

Veteran Member
Feb 17, 2006
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AJPratt said:
Are we on our own for most meals?

Only day one we are on our own and day three is the Directors Special Event (so, if you are not a Director or above then you are on your own on day three as well...I always leave after closing session on day 3), day two is our Executive Director Banquets.
 

DebbieJ

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Oct 6, 2005
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The Mag Mile is NOT exactly walking distance from the Hilton. You would have to take a bus or the EL to get up there. Or, take a REALLY long walk!
 

The_Kitchen_Guy

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Nov 4, 2005
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DebbieJ said:
The Mag Mile is NOT exactly walking distance from the Hilton. You would have to take a bus or the EL to get up there. Or, take a REALLY long walk!
Or just get into one of those bright yellow cars waiting at the curb. It won't cost than a few bucks to get to the Mag Mile.
 

stephanieboyd

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Jan 26, 2006
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I went to Chicago for my 21st birthday, many years ago. The Shedd Aquarium was awesome if you like that sort of thing. Obviously, the shops on Michigan Ave are great!! We had a rental car, but I do not suggest driving as the traffic is a nightmare!!! Take a cab into downtown to see other cool stuff. We went to both the Hard Rock and the Planet Hollywood, but those were all that was there then. They didn't have the Cheesecake Factory yet when I was there!! You can see so much if you are willing to try to do it and take a cab if necessary.

All of these are great ideas and should keep you quite busy!! I know there is also an Italian restaurant that they showed it on the Food Network or Travel Channel years ago. They take a little bowl just bigger than a SA and make a calzone that looks like a mushroom. This little place was a victim in the St Valentine's Day Massacre. So, if you are into the whole mob type sightseeing, this is your place!!!!

After some searching, I have found it!!! It's the Chicago Pizza And Oven Grinder, Co. wow does this look good!!!!!! It will be a cab ride, but it looks so good!!! Just check out this site and look at the pictures!!!!

http://www.chicagopizzaandovengrinder.com/

Maybe some of the other girls would like to go there for an evening out. This way you could split the cab fare!!!
 

DebbieJ

Legend Member
Oct 6, 2005
10,901
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Chicago Pizza and Oven Grinder is really yummy.

Planet Hollywood is closed. That location is now Gino's East Pizza.

The Shedd is awesome. You could also check out the other museums--the Art Institute, the Field Museum (of course directors will see this), the Adler Planetarium, or even a trip south to the Museum of Science and Industry.

If you've never been to Chicago, a trip up the Sears Tower or the Han**** would be in order. Don't go if it's cloudy, though. You can save yourself the elevator fare by going to the 95th floor of the Han**** Bldg--The Signature Room--and have a drink. Stunning views.

Lots of people like ESPN Zone.

If you're looking for good stuffed pizza, I'd skip Uno, Due, and Gino's East and find a Giordano's or Eduardo's.
 

Chef Kearns

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Feb 8, 2005
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I think she does that. It seems to bring more attention to the part she doesn't want to mention. However; that is the name of the building Han****. It has nothing to do with the other thing. However; that is all we are thinking of now!! :)
 

dollfangs

Member
Silver Member
Oct 20, 2005
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If you are going a day early, the taste of chicago will be in its last day. I am going on Saturday and staying until the following Saturday. My mom is going with me and we are making this a vacation. Does anyone have any ideas for a reasonable hotel for the days not in conference that is both safe and offers parking?
 
May 13, 2005
11
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I'm going to the Field Museum they will have The King Tut Exibit during Conference! Directors get to go on a special tour but I'm not a director... I also have a 7 yr old that is nuts about dinosaurs and Suzy the largest T-Rex is on display here too! Hoping to bring something home to my little guy about her!


WAVE #3
 

Chef Kearns

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Feb 8, 2005
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Melissa--When is the Taste happening? I tried to find info on it through CitySearch and couldn't find anything. Do you know the exact dates?
 

pamperedbecky

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May 6, 2005
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Chef Kearns said:
Melissa--When is the Taste happening? I tried to find info on it through CitySearch and couldn't find anything. Do you know the exact dates?
It's June 30th-July 9th. IT is an awesome thing to do. Especially if you're not driving IN to the city that day. I went every year that i used to live in Chicago, but since we moved out to the 'burbs I think we've only been once or twice in 8 years. Even taking the train in gets a little hairy. If you are coming in a day early and you're staying downtown, definitely do the Taste!!

As for other cheaper hotels to stay at before the official conference hotels, I'm not too sure. If you're flexible, try one of those discount websites to look at hotel rates.

Definitely have some pizza! Yummy. It's been about 8 years since we lived down there, so I don't know what other restaurants are still around. If I think of any I'll post again.:)
 
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