1) Swim in Lake Michigan. Theres plenty of beautiful beaches north and
south for a cold, clean dip in this natural treasure. Free.
2) Play 16 inch softball in a city park. No-glove softball has also been
famous only in Chicago since the 1920s, says the Web site for the 16-inch
Softball Hall of Fame. $16.99 for a MacGregor Chicago 16 Inch Softball
Dicks Sporting Goods.
3) Visit Garfield Park Conservatory, 300 N. Central Park Ave., during
winter, a low-cost tropical vacation. Free, though a donation is suggested
for special shows and exhibits.
4) Cheer on local boxers at the Chicago Golden Gloves. The 2011 dates arent
set yet, but the tournament typically lasts 12 nights during March and April
at St. Andrewss, 1710 W. Addison St. Past champs include Cassius Clay and
Michael Lord of the Dance Flatley. Tickets start at $10 for top out at $50
for VIP ringside champsionship tickets. Corona is $4, says Trayce Zimmeramn,
5) Eat a burrito at 2 a.m. $4.95 for the Burrito Surpemo at Tonys Burrito
Mex, 1957 W. Belmont Ave.
6) Step out on the town on the Willis Towers Skydeck ledge. $30 for a fast
pass or $11 for a youth pass (3 - 11 years old) and $15.95 for an
7) Fish a lagoon. From Humboldt Park to Washington Park, there are lagoons
filled with crappie, bluegill and carp throughout the city.
Fishingchicago.org provides information on fishing holes and bait shops.
8) Cruise the Chicago River on an Architectural Boat Tour. Its a
camera-ready way to see our fair city.
9) Get a hot wax figure at Brookfield Zoo. Zoo admission
is $13.50 for adults and $9.50 for kids and seniors.
10) Sing Go Cubs Go at Wrigley Field after a win. Tickets are $8 - $315. Wins arent guaranteed.
11) Watch the fireworks at U.S. Cellular after a home run. Tickets $10 to
$68. Fireworks visible also visible on the Dan Ryan if you time it right.
12) See a Bears-Packers game in the winter. Next game is Jan. 2, 2011 at
Lambeau Field. Be sure to tailgate.
13) Run or walk a 5K race. There is a race almost every weekend, in
neighborhoods throughout the city. People will clap for you, regardless of
how fast you run or walk.
14 ) Check out the gray seals above and underwater at the Lincoln Park Zoos
Kovler Sea Lion Pool. Free.
15) Bike the Drive, a car-free cycling experience on Chicagos iconic road.
Typically held Memorial Day weekend. bikethedrive.org
16) Ride the 150-foot high Ferris Wheel at Navy Pier, which was modeled
after the first Ferris wheel, built for Chicago's 1893 World's Columbian
17) Get off the Ferris Wheel and walk to the end of Navy Pier. Free.
18) Watch the South Shore Drill team march in the Bud Billiken Parade,
August 14, 2010. In 2009, the drill team wowed with a fast-paced precision
homage to both Barack Obama and Michael Jackson. Free. budbillikenparade.com
19) See a show at Second City, 1616 N. Wells St. Ticket prices vary.
20) Hear a nobody play at a blues club, located throughout the city. Ticket
21) Picnic at Blues Fest, June 11 through 13 in Grant Park. Free.
22) Eat too much at Taste of Chicago, June 25 through July 4. Twelve tickets
cost $8. Main entrance is Michigan Avenue and Congress Drive.
23) Listen to live organ music at the Music Box, 3733 N. Southport Ave.,
before your movie. $9.25 general admission.
24) The DuSable Museum of African American History, 740 East 56th Place, is
the oldest museum in the United States dedicated to African American
history. Tickets are a bargain at $3 for adults, $2 for students and
seniors, $1 for children 6 to 12 years old and free for children 6 years and
25) Grill out with as many family members as you can find after the Bud
Billiken Parade, the oldest and largest African American parade in the
26) Take a picture at the Jordan Statue at the United Center, 1901 W.
Madison St. Free.
27) See your reflection in The Bean, the 110-ton sculpture Cloud Gate, at
Millennium Park, Michigan and Randolph avenues. Free.
28) Soak yourself in the Crown Fountain, at the southwest corner of
Millennium Park at Michigan Avenue and Monroe Streets. Weather permitting,
the water is on mid-spring through mid-fall while the images of peoples
faces are always on. Free.
29) High Tea at the Drake Hotel features live harp music and scones in the
hotels Palm Court. Afternoon tea is $30, or $12 for children ages 4 to 12
30) Window shop on Mag Mile. Sure, you can find all those stores in a
suburban mall. But nothing beats the hustle and flow of big city window
31) Ice skate outside at winter rinks throughout the city. Chicagoparkdistrict.com.
32) Eat a �cheezborger� at the Billy Goat Tavern, 430 N. Michigan Ave,
Lower Level. $2.85.
33) Dive deep into the coal mine at the Museum of Science and Industry, 57th Street and Lake Shore Drive. The coal mine was the museum�s first permanent exhibit and has been open for �miners� since 1933. General admission $15 - $9 depending on age and Chicago residency.
34) Stare at Sue at The Field Museum, 1400 S. Lake Shore Dr., then hit one of the museum�s special exhibits. $29 - $16 depending on age and Chicago residency.
35) Admire George Seurat�s �A Sunday on La Grande Jatte� at the Art
Institute of Chicago, 111 South Michigan Ave. $18 for adults, $12 for
seniors and students and free for children under 14. There�s a $2 discount for Chicago residents.
36) Walk by a bungalow, which shouldn�t be hard to find. There are more than
80,000 bungalows in Chicago. To learn more about this distinctive housing
style, visit www.chicagobungalow.org.
37) Watch The Blues Brothers. The Chicago Public Library has more than 40
copies in circulation. Free.
38) Listen to 109 musicians at the top of their games at the Chicago
Symphony Orchestra. Ticket prices vary and there are free events throughout the year. cso.org
39) Eat at world-famous Alinea, 1723 North Halsted. Tasting menu is $150, a tour is $225.
40) Eat a Rainbow Cone, a tasty, Chicago-only blend of orange sherbert with pistachio, palmer house (vanilla with cherries and walnuts), strawberry and chocolate ice cream. Original Rainbow Cone, 9233 S. Western Ave. $3.79 for a large cone.
41) Stand in line for a sausage at Hot Doug's, 3324 North California Ave.,
then discuss after lunch if the wait was worth it. $1.75 - $4 for different
42) Eat a Royal George at Margie�s Ice Cream and Candies, 1960 N. Western
Ave. Twenty-five scoops of ice cream will cost you $49.95, so bring some
friends to help finish -- and pay for -- it.
43) Watch the Chicago Journeymen Plumbers dye the Chicago River green, then
stick around for the St. Patrick�s Day parade. Free.
44) Be inspired by the message and the music at Sunday services at a South
Side church. Free.
45) Take the water taxi on the Chicago River. $2 - $4 one way.
Chicagowatertaxi.com has the routes and schedule.
46) Watch a movie in a park near your home. The Chicago Park District is
showing 160 movies in parks throughout the city from June 18th to September
10th. Free. Chicagoparkdistrict.com
47) Eat fried chicken at Army & Lou's, 422 E. 75th St., celebrating 65
years of cooking up southern favorites. $9.50 for a half of chicken.
48) Check out the ironwork on the Carson Pirie Scott building, 1 State. St.,
designed by famed architect Louis Sullivan. Free.
49) Eat an Italian Beef, a sandwich that�s hard to find outside of Chicago.
Hot or sweet, wet or dry, it doesn�t matter where you buy. About $4.
50) Imagine the stench of the stockyards as you stare at Bubbly Creek on the
South Fork of the Chicago River�s South Branch. The river bubbled in that
spot because that�s where animal blood and entrails from the stockyards were
51) Perfect your haggling skills at the Maxwell Street Market, Desplaines
Street and Roosevelt Road, which is open every Sunday. Free admission.
52) Meet with your local alderman and let them know what you think would
improve your neighborhood.
53) Amble on the lakefront trail - bike, rollerblade, run or walk. Wherever
you are, whatever your speed, you�ll get a gorgeous view. Free.
54) Vote. It�s one important way of helping to make Chicago the city you
want it to be.
55) Picnic in Grant Park during the summer music festival. Free.
56) Check out the bargains on Jeweler's Row, Wabash Avenue in the Loop.
57) See a show in a tiny storefront theater. Chicagoplays.com has the list
of whats playing.
58) Party with your city�s Puerto Rican residents at one of the largest
summer festivals in town, Fiestas Puertorriquenas. June 15 through 20th in
59) Attend a performance of �Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind,� the
longest running show in Chicago. Www.neofuturists.org has performance times
and ticket prices.
60) Get married or watch a wedding in the Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E.
Washington St., then see the world�s largest Louis Comfort Tiffany art glass
dome. $10 to get married by a judge on select Saturdays. Call (312) 603-5660
for more information.
61) Walk around the University of Chicago campus and Hyde Park on a rainy
62) Don�t just drive past Buckingham Fountain. Walk around the fountain and
the adjacent rose garden. Free.
63) Check out where the Obamas lived before they moved to the White House.
Get as close as you can to 5046 S. Greenwood Ave. in Kenwood.
64) Walk down Michigan Avenue as the sun is setting, from the Loop up to Oak
Street. Bonus if you do this during one of the first (light) snowfalls of
the year. Free.
65) Read the Chicago Sun-Times, the oldest continuously published daily
newspaper in the city.
66) Watch phenomenal dancing at the Joffrey Ballet. joffrey.org
67) Catch the raising of the bridges over the Chicago River. Free.
68) Eat a complete free lunch by strolling the sample-filled aisles of Whole
Foods, 1550 North Kingsbury St.
69) Eat corn in Pilsen, bought from a street vendor.
70) Drink green beer on St. Patrick's Day on the �Beverly Irish Mile,� a 13
bar stretch along South Western Avenue.
71) Find your Chinese zodiac statue in Chinatown before eating dim sum.
Statues and dim sum are at Chinatown Square, 2100 S Wentworth Ave.
72) Celebrate a national title with one of our sports teams. Oh wait, you
just did that. Special thanks to our Stanley Cup winning Blackhawks.
73) Volunteer your time with the city�s kids, at a children�s hospitals or
afterschool tutoring. Free.
74) Get yelled at by the staff at The Wiener's Circle, 2622 N Clark St.
Profanity is free, char dogs are $3.55.
75) Dance at the Beaumont Bar & Grill at 3 a.m. (or later!). Located at 2020
76) Get a little bit country on the dance floor at Chicago�s favorite honky
tonk Carol�s Pub, 4659 N. Clark St.
77) Cheer the precision moves of ROTC (Righteously Outrageous Twirling
Corps) at the Gay Pride Parade. The 41st annual parade starts at noon June
27 at Broadway and Halsted avenues. Free.
78) Learn about Mexican culture and history at the National Museum of
Mexican Arts, the United State�s largest Latino arts institution. 1852 W.
19th St. Free.
79) Check out where architect Frank Lloyd Wright lived and worked at his
home and studio, 951 Chicago Ave., Oak Park.
80) Buy farm fresh fruits and vegetables at the Green City Market, from 7
a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesdays and Saturdays at the south end of Lincoln Park.
81) See a taping of �The Oprah Winfrey Show.� Ok, this might be impossible -
the show is nearing its final season and this has consistently been the
hottest ticket in town. Give it a try anyway. Ticket information at
82) Enjoy the spectacular view with a drink at the Signature Lounge at the
96th in the John Hancock Center, 875 North Michigan Ave.
83) Ride the CTA Holiday Train, Chicago�s crazy and colorful expression of
holiday cheer. Remember Santa and his elves will be riding the rails to hand
you a candy cane. Transitchicago.com has the dates and locations.
84) Deep dish, thin crust, wood-fired or oven baked - we�re not going to get
into the debate here. There�s a lot of pizza in this town - eat some.
85) Pay a visit to Granddad, the Australian lungfish who holds the title of
living longer in an aquarium the any other fish in the world, at the Shedd
Aquarium, 1200 S. Lake Shore Drive. Then check out the penguins, dolphins,
sharks and belugas. Tickets are $19.95 to $26.95, with discounts for Chicago
86) Take a look through the Doane Observatory telescope, the largest
publicly-accessible telescope in the Midwest, at Adler After Dark at the
Adler Planetarium, 1300 S. Lake Shore Drive. Adler After Dark is held every
third Thursday for those 21 years and older and is the only time you can
87) Check out the Indian and Pakistani wares and food on Devon Avenue
between Ravenswood and California avenues.
88) Attend a neighborhood summer festival. You can find one any weekend in
the summer, and though the addresses change, the food and music being sold
are nearly identical.
89) Ride the El, a train unlike any other. $2.25 for a one-way ticket.
90) Eat food from a variety of African countries. Try Senegalese at Yassa
African Restaurant, 716 E 79th St., or Ethiopian at Demera Ethiopian
Restaurant, 4801 N. Broadway Ave.
91) Ride Kiddieland�s iconic Little Dipper, which is now at Six Flags Great
America in Gurnee. Tickets start at $34.99 for children under 48 inches to
$54.99 for adults.
92) Tee off at the scenic Sydney R. Marovitz Golf Course, 3600 N. Recreation
Drive. $10 to $25 depending on age and day of the week.
93) Eat flaming cheese in Greektown. $5.95 at The Parthenon, 314 S. Halsted St.
94) Raise a glass to Chicago�s history, move to some jazz or heckle a poet
at the Green Mill, 4802 N. Broadway Ave.
95) Dress up and dance at MadonnaRama, first Sunday of the month at Berlin,
954 W. Belmont Ave.
96) Learn about Jane Addams, the first American woman to win the Nobel Peace
Prize, at the Hull-House Museum, 800 S. Halsted St. Free.
97) Party with Chicagos sizeable Polish population at Taste of Polonia,
held every Labor Day weekend at the Copernicus Cultural & Civic Center, 5216
West Lawrence Ave. Join in the bingo game and hope a local politician shows
up to sweeten the pot.
98) See the original homebase of the Daley dynasty at 3536 S. Lowe Ave.,
where Richard J. Daley lived from 1955 to 1976.
99) Watch Ferris Bueller's Day Off. The Chicago Public Library has 14 DVDs
to check out. Free.
100) Learn more about Chicago at the Chicago History Museum, 1601 N. Clark
St. $12-$14 and free for kids 12 and younger.