Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Swept Away by the Windy City

...Yes, yes it is. My first question about Chicago was answered on my arrival, it is indeed windy... But what else? I've heard plenty about the ex-mobsters, the hotdogs and deep-dish pizza but what lies beneath the usual tourist badges that this city wears. Being as I engaged in almost tourist exclusive entertainment, I went surfing the net to find interesting things you could do on your trip to Chicago.
1. Maxwell Street Market - Continuing its long tradition of offering Chicago immigrants and locals a space to sell odds and ends, the colorful flea market hosts 518 vendors every Sunday, year-round. In addition to household goods, clothing, CDs, jewelry, power tools and produce, there are several Mexican food stands offering authentic fare like enchiladas, tacos, tamales, plantains and horchata. Live blues is played at the market weekly (weather permitting).
2. City Gallery - City Gallery in the Historic Water Tower, 806 N. Michigan, presents exhibitions of Chicago-themed photographs by Chicago photographers. Chicago's most cherished landmark for over a century, the Historic Water Tower was transformed into the city's official photography gallery in 1999. Yet another example of a successful public/private partnership, City Gallery was created through the leadership of Chicago's most famous photographer Victor Skrebneski, who also helped design and restore the recently dedicated Water Tower Park which surrounds the Historic Water Tower. Marshall Field's Project Imagine also sponsored the renovation of Water Tower Park.
3. Chicago Greeter Program - Get the inside scoop on a Chicago neighborhood with a local expert. The Chicago Greeter Program offers free walking tours of the city hosted by resident volunteers. From the Ukrainian Village to Lincoln Square, the Greeter Program is a great way to learn the ins-and-outs of this dynamic city.
4. Movies in the Parks - Creating avenues for Chicago families to enjoy summer in the city, the Chicago Park District announces Movies in the Parks where more than 170 current and classic movies will be shown in neighborhood parks throughout the city, from June through September. There is no better place to be this summer than your neighborhood park. Grab a picnic basket and a blanket and enjoy the show. You bring the snacks, we'll bring the stars. All movies are free and begin at dusk.
5. Free Street Theatre - The Free Street Theatre group puts on productions in various inner-city communities throughout Chicago. Shows range from political satire to performance puppetry and admission is by donation.

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