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Old 08-15-2016, 02:15 AM
 
399 posts, read 867,185 times
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I'm going back to Chicago for about a week and a half to visit family and friends. I made a Google My Map of places, tours, and attractions that I never experienced while growing up here, but would like to see. I will be back in the beginning/middle of September. Below is a link to these places (opens a My Maps from Google Drive):

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1Fy...wU&usp=sharing

For those that will not click on the link:
  • Oak Park Conservatory
  • Haitian American Museum
  • Swedish American Museum
  • DANK Haus German Museum
  • Leather Archives and Museum
  • National Museum of Puerto Rican Arts
  • Intuit: Center for Intuitive Outsider Art
  • Chicago Temple Building
  • Pullman State Historic Site
  • Obama Kissing Rock
  • 4501 N Clarendon (model train club exhibit)
  • Haymarket Memorial sculpture
  • SpaceTime Tanks
  • Eli's Cheesecake Company
  • Smart Museum of Art
  • Osaka Garden
  • Arlington International Racecourse
  • Fermilab
  • Busy Beaver Button Co
  • Oriental Institute Museum
I chose these because I've never been to them. As a teacher in Chicagoland, I have had the great joy of being able to see a lot of things, but was surprised just how much I still haven't seen or done. These sites go all over Chicago and therefore do not stick to one side of the city; as I will have a car and my old Ventra, this will not be important.

Many of the sites are museums, some are tours (Pullman, Fermilab, Eli's, Chicago Temple, etc.) or small stops that are on the way to other things (Obama Kissing Rock, Haymarket sculpture, etc.), while finally some are activities that I can enjoy for a day or several hours with friends as a form of socialization (Busy Beaver Button Co., Arlington Racecourse, model train exhibit, etc.).

If you had one and a half weeks in Chicago (jetlag be damned) to spend with your family and friends, money were not an issue, and had your own car to use, would you do these activities? Which would you combine into day trips or avoid altogether? I appreciate your comments and insight, thanks.
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Old 08-15-2016, 07:23 AM
 
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Obama kissing rock? Never heard of it. Your list contains many special interest items. Busy Beaver Button Co. But...whatever floats your boat. I'm a big fan of the Dankhaus but I've never noticed any museum there.
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Old 08-15-2016, 09:02 AM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
996 posts, read 845,093 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aerio View Post
If you had one and a half weeks in Chicago (jetlag be damned) to spend with your family and friends, money were not an issue, and had your own car to use, would you do these activities? Which would you combine into day trips or avoid altogether? I appreciate your comments and insight, thanks.
To answer your first question, I probably would not do a lot of the items on your list, but that's just a matter of taste. Make sure you know what the leather museum actually is, by the way. For Arlington, I would not go unless there was live racing, and starting in September, there's less of it so make sure to check the schedule before making that trip. Also, I'd consider taking the Metra Union Pacific NW to Arlington (there's a stop at the track) from Ogilvie Station downtown, so you don't have to drive home after (probably) having a drink or two at the track.

Combining items: I would do all the Hyde Park things on one day, obviously - the Japanese Garden, Smart Museum, Oriental Institute, and the Kissing Rock (which is just a rock on a corner, and won't take long). I'd consider adding the DuSable Museum to the Hyde Park list. A place to have lunch in Hyde Park that's a reliable standby is the Medici on 57th Street. (Call first to make sure they are open when you are planning to be in HP - they often close for at least part of the time between University of Chicago quarters, which would be approx. Aug. 27-Sept. 17 this year, I think.)

If I were planning a socializing event with friends, I would do a Chicago Architecture Foundation boat tour (and / or walking tour, depending on their energy level). I would also check out the Driehaus Museum (and of course the Art Institute).

Have a good visit!
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:43 PM
 
399 posts, read 867,185 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ToriaT View Post
Obama kissing rock? Never heard of it. Your list contains many special interest items. Busy Beaver Button Co. But...whatever floats your boat. I'm a big fan of the Dankhaus but I've never noticed any museum there.
Yes, most of them I had to research to see something special or more hidden around Chicago. Many of these I may have passed by, but never actually went inside of. Of course, some are more interesting than others, but having a week and a half will give me ample time to see most of them. I am not worried about seeing every single site. What was your impression of the Dankhaus, if I may ask?
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Old 08-15-2016, 02:55 PM
 
399 posts, read 867,185 times
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Originally Posted by Gemini1963 View Post
To answer your first question, I probably would not do a lot of the items on your list, but that's just a matter of taste. Make sure you know what the leather museum actually is, by the way. For Arlington, I would not go unless there was live racing, and starting in September, there's less of it so make sure to check the schedule before making that trip. Also, I'd consider taking the Metra Union Pacific NW to Arlington (there's a stop at the track) from Ogilvie Station downtown, so you don't have to drive home after (probably) having a drink or two at the track.

Combining items: I would do all the Hyde Park things on one day, obviously - the Japanese Garden, Smart Museum, Oriental Institute, and the Kissing Rock (which is just a rock on a corner, and won't take long). I'd consider adding the DuSable Museum to the Hyde Park list. A place to have lunch in Hyde Park that's a reliable standby is the Medici on 57th Street. (Call first to make sure they are open when you are planning to be in HP - they often close for at least part of the time between University of Chicago quarters, which would be approx. Aug. 27-Sept. 17 this year, I think.)

If I were planning a socializing event with friends, I would do a Chicago Architecture Foundation boat tour (and / or walking tour, depending on their energy level). I would also check out the Driehaus Museum (and of course the Art Institute).

Have a good visit!
I am aware of the Leather Museum's contents, hence my interest. It is out of the ordinary, indeed!

Thanks for the Arlington information, I shall check its schedule to see if anything is happening. In fact, I will be staying mostly in Arlington Heights or Elk Grove for my visit here, so either Uber or another ride will make do.

You're right about Hyde Park attractions, with the plaque of kissing mostly being something I'd see at a glance, "just to see it". I've been to the DuSable Museum so I won't go again, although I understand there is a large sculpture near it whose name evades my memory at the moment. Thanks for the recommendation of Medici, will look into it.

Finally, yes -- good idea about the free walking tours and architectural tours provided by the Foundation. It escaped my memory, but it's been something I've wanted to do as well. I also researched a bit into the Driehaus Museum, it seems interesting -- what is your impression of it?

As for Art Institute, I do indeed enjoy it but am willing to put it last. Having looked at their website of current exhibits (at least in September) I may make an exception for Thursday's free day. Thanks for the reminder.
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Old 08-15-2016, 03:09 PM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
996 posts, read 845,093 times
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I keep meaning to make it to the Driehaus but have not yet! I have heard from friends who have visited that it's worth a look (especially if you can get one of the guided tours, I think).

Also, just to be clear, the CAF tours are not free. The walking tours are quite reasonably priced but the boat tour is in fact pretty pricey. (I think it's worth it, though.)

Again, have a good time - both with the planning and the actual visit!
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Old 08-15-2016, 03:26 PM
Status: "And just like that, Covid was gone." (set 7 days ago)
 
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Hey what about the Oriental Museum on the south side on the lake, you can see very ancient artifacts from Nebuchadnezzar's time. I'd like to go see it myself.
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Old 08-15-2016, 03:30 PM
 
399 posts, read 867,185 times
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Originally Posted by ChicagoMeO View Post
Hey what about the Oriental Museum on the south side on the lake, you can see very ancient artifacts from Nebuchadnezzar's time. I'd like to go see it myself.
It is indeed on my list, as evidenced by the Google My Maps. In fact, there is a special "Persepolis: Images of an Empire" presentation that is in exhibit till September 3rd. Perhaps a due visit is necessary? Lol. I won't be in town until August 31st...from Tokyo. To be honest, I didn't consider jetlag until after planning everything, but what the hell...you only live once.

Museum website: Special Exhibits | The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago
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Old 08-15-2016, 03:33 PM
 
399 posts, read 867,185 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gemini1963 View Post
I keep meaning to make it to the Driehaus but have not yet! I have heard from friends who have visited that it's worth a look (especially if you can get one of the guided tours, I think).

Also, just to be clear, the CAF tours are not free. The walking tours are quite reasonably priced but the boat tour is in fact pretty pricey. (I think it's worth it, though.)

Again, have a good time - both with the planning and the actual visit!
Thanks. If everything goes all right, I'd like to see as much as possible, and eat eat eat! I've done the boat tour, so I will pass on that. I will have to look into other aquatic tours (from Navy Pier?) that will be interesting. In my opinion, autumn is the best time in Chicago. I was never a fan of the hot summer weather, though being in Tokyo has made me realize it's actually not as humid as I thought climates can be (in regard to actually living and working in them...)
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Old 08-15-2016, 04:22 PM
 
2,315 posts, read 6,087,563 times
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The Oak Park Conservatory is charming, but very small. You can see it in a few minutes. Unless you are out there for something else (family/Frank Lloyd Wright tour), Id suggest going to the Garfield Park Conservatory instead, which will have much more to offer.
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