Hosting a birthday party for your kids at your own home can take a lot of planning, and you may not have the time to do everything on your own. Instead of coordinating all of those small details that make a kid’s party great, there are several places to host a party in Chicago that your kids will love. From dinosaurs to baseball, Chicago is full of great party ideas.
For $600, you can host a party for 15 guests that includes admission to the museum, a private party room, and catering. There are five catering menus to choose from, including:
- Submarine Sandwiches
- Ball Park Dogs
- Nacho Bar
You can bring your own cake, or the museum can provide one for you. Decorations are your responsibility, but they are allowed as long as you don’t disturb the museum walls. Tables and chairs are included in the package, so you won’t have to rent any for the event. Additional guests can be accommodated for $35 each.
The Field Museum offers a range of experiences and activities for its birthday party packages. The starting price is $800 for up to 25 children. You’ll get all-day access to the museum, two-hour party room rental, free parking, and one of three museum-themed craft projects for the kids to enjoy. Additional perks, such as entrance to the #-D theater or a self-guided scavenger hunt, can be added to the package for an additional charge.
If you can handle all of the frill and fluff that comes with a trip to American Girl place, you might want to consider hosting a birthday party for your little princess here. There are several packages to choose from, and the perks range from exploring the store after business hours to cake and crafts. Pricing starts at $35 per person, and there are four packages to choose from at he Chicago location.
Wrigley Field offers group ticket packages, which are an obvious choice for your little slugger, but you can also sign up for a birthday tour of the Friendly Confines for an unforgettable birthday experience. Prices start at $50 for a group of 10 people, or $30 for a group of 20. The package includes an on-field photo, a Chicago Cubs birthday cake, and a goody bag for the birthday boy or girl. Your party will also have access to the Sheffield Club to enjoy the cake after the tour.
Finding a great place to host a party in Chicago is easier than you think. Instead of having all your friends and family take over your house for the day, consider one of these great options.
We are back after our extended hiatus! A lot of other projects have gotten in the way of our posts, and then there is the Polarpocalypse too! We are working hard to get some great content for you to peruse as you think about the warm weather that is (hopefully) headed our way soon. In the meantime, please check out some of our older posts and get to know us a little bit better. If you have any stories that you think we should cover, please send us an email at email@example.com!
Here are some posts you might want to check out:
Thanks for staying friends with us during our hiatus! Remember, if you would like to see us cover something, just let us know!
Bocce ball isn’t just for backyard parties anymore. Both beginners and serious Bocce enthusiasts have the opportunity to compete with some of the best players in the country at the Pinstripes 1st Annual Bocce Tournament.
Qualifying rounds for the tourney will be held on September 15 at the Pinstripes in Edina, Minnesota, plus there will be an exhibition with world-class players on will be held on Saturday, September 21 at the Pinstripes Northbrook, South Barrington and Oak Brook locations. The championship rounds will take place on September 22 at the Oak Brook, Illinois Pinstripes. If you prefer to sit back and take in all the action, don’t worry, spectators are welcome as well.
With more than $27,000 going to the top teams, this bocce ball tournament is sure to attract avid players from all corners of the US, and $15,000 of that prize money will go to the top team. Space for the qualifying round is limited, so if you think you have what it takes, be sure to register early.
Each team for the tourney will consist of four players plus one alternate. The registration fee is $400 per team, and all entry forms must be received no later than August 21. You can register by contacting the Pinstripes Event Director, Sandie Montgomery through email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or by phone (630-575-8744). Your registration fee will include breakfast and lunch during the qualifying rounds and for the day of the championship if you advance to the last day of play.
You can also enjoy a gourmet wine dinner on September 21 after the exhibition round in Oak Brook. Famous for its delicious culinary treats, Pinstripes will be serving up a five-course meal accompanied by several delicious wine profiles. The all-inclusive price for the evening is $75 per person.
If you don’t want to play in the tournament, but you still want to play some bocce ball on your own, you can pop in to any location to play for just $5 per hour during weekdays days and evenings and weekend days, or $10 per hour on Friday and Saturday nights. For more information about the tournament or any of the four Pinstripes locations, please visit the Pinstripes website.
Untitled has already established itself as the premier supper club in Chicago, blending the feel of 1920s and 1930s Chicago with a modern menu that is the envy of other restaurants on the scene. Now Untitled has opened a new outdoor patio, giving guests even more options for a great evening out.
A new selection of summer dishes has been created to coincide with the opening of the chic patio section. You can choose from new items such as the Beef Carpaccio, which comes with a caper marmalade, anchovy aioli, and gaufrette, or the Whole Fried Loup de Mere (pictured), served alongside of fresh vegetables. You can also choose from any of the regular menu options while seated on the new patio. For a snack, you might opt for the candied peppered bacon, or you might go with the bison burger for a heartier meal.
In true speakeasy style, Untitled offers a wide array of signature drinks, including those made from any of the 300 available whiskey selections. Untitled also carries an extensive line of wines if you aren’t in the mood for a craft cocktail.
You can expect to be entertained by live music in the evenings on the new patio, but for a change of pace, you can also take in the Untitled Soul Brunch Sunday event outside as well.
The patio will be open Tuesday through Friday from 4:30 pm until 11:00 pm, Saturday from 7:00 pm until 11:00 pm, and on Sunday from 11:30 am until 3:00 pm. Reservations are not accepted for the patio, so make sure to get there early to get a seat in one of the cozy cabanas.
Untitled is located at 111 W. Kinzie Street. Food prices range from $9 to $39. You can find out more about Untitled through their website.
There are some popular tourist attractions in Chicago that locals don’t need to visit to appreciate this city, like the Sears Willis Tower (a boring office building that happens to be tall), but then there are others, like the Museum of Science and Industry, that everyone must see at least once. If you live in Chicago but have avoided the MSI, it is time to rethink that choice.
Now, chanced are, if you grew up in Chicago, you have already been to the MSI for at least one field trip. You may have gone to watch the baby chicks in the incubator, to see the IMAX Theater, or maybe visit the U-505. These brief field trips just don’t do The Museum of Science and Industry justice.
The museum’s campus was originally part of the White City (the World’s Fair). You may have read the book Devil in the White City, which gives plenty of background on the construction of the buildings that were part of the celebration. You can still see the ornate detail that was part of the original design of these buildings, which were originally meant to be temporary. To get an idea of just how big the World’s Fair was, the Field Museum/Adler Planetarium/Shedd Aquarium campus mark the northern end of the fair, with the entire event spreading all the way south to the MSI.
At The Museum of Science and Industry, science is seamlessly blended with history and other subjects to create a learning experience that will astound kids while teaching us grown-ups a few things too. The campus holds over fourteen acres of exhibits, including the coal mine, the Pioneer Zephyr, the U-505, Colleen Moore’s Fairy Castle, Farm Tech, and Earth Revealed. In addition to these permanent exhibits, the MSI plays host to many temporary exhibits, which change throughout the year.
One of the best times of year to visit the museum is at Christmastime. The Christmas Around the World Exhibit is the city’s best Christmas display, but many residents know nothing about it. The large hall of the museum is filled with enormous trees, each of which are decorated in the Christmas tradition of another country’s culture. It is a breathtaking sight to see, regardless of your religious preferences.
Don’t forget to plan some time to walk through the older exhibits in the Museum. There are plenty of hallways with slightly hidden gems, like Yesterday’s Main Street, which are well worth the look.
While there are some tourist traps you will want to avoid, The Museum of Science and Industry is definitely not one of them. For more information on planning a trip, you can visit the museum website.
If you don’t want to cook for July 4, there are plenty of restaurants in and around the city that are serving up specials for the holiday. Here is your guide to July 4 in Chicago meals and deals:
Pinstripes (Oakbrook, Northbrook, and South Barrington): Free gelato when you dine-in on July 4. Pinstripes also has a full catering menu available for the holiday, so you can BBQ without cooking.
Wickets Bar and Grill (The Streets of Woodfield in Schaumburg): The Hot Dog and Brat Bar features $3 hot dogs and $4 brats with a topping bar of 13 different tasty condiments and toppers for your dog or brat. This offer is good every Thursday in July starting on the Fourth. A patriotic drink, the Fourth Flute, will be available every day in July. The drink is priced at $9 and is cocktail, the Fourth Flute, made with marinated Loco Rum Cherry, Prosecco and Blue Curacao Brittle.
Untitled (111 W. Kinzie St., Chicago): The Red, White, and Bluegrass jam features live, all-American bluegrass music and a special patriotic menu priced at $35 per person. This event, which takes place on July 3, kicks off the holiday weekend. Please click here for more details.
Poag Mahone’s (333 S. Wells, Chicago): The Hot Dogs Across America special lasts all month long in honor of National Hot Dog month. For $6, you can choose between the Chicago, Atlanta, Kansas City or San Francisco dogs, all of which are served up with a gourmet side of Mac n Cheese.
Hub 51 (51 W. Hubbard, Chicago): The Hub 51 Fourth of July celebration runs July 3 and 4. Brunch will be served on July 4, and drink specials include $6 Bloody Marys and mimosas. $2 Miller High Life is offered on both days.
If your restaurant or bar is hosting a July 4 celebration, send us a message with all of the details, and we will add it to the list!
The Fourth of July is quickly approaching, have you decided where you will be watching the fireworks? Here is our list of July 4 fireworks in Chicago and the suburbs. Please feel free to let us know if we missed your favorite place to see fireworks:
Glen Ellyn Fireworks: Dusk at Lake Ellyn Park. Blankets will not be allowed in the park until 6:00 pm. There is a special seating area open to those who make a contribution to the park. You can get details on booster seating by clicking here.
Glenview Fireworks: July 4, 7:30 at Glenview Park Golf Club, 800 Shermer Road. Parking is available for $5 at Springman Middle School
Naperville Ribfest Fireworks: July 4 at 9:30 at Knoch Park in Napervlle, entry to park viewing area opens at 7:30.
Navy Pier: July 3 and 4 starting at 9:30 at Navy Pier.
Village of Thornton Fireworks -Thornton Multipurpose Fields, July 4 around 9:30 (After the parachutists land-yes, we said parachutists!)
South Holland Fireworks- Veterans Memorial Park, July 4 at 9:10
Tinley Park Fireworks- McCarthy Park, July 4 at 9:15
Wauconda Fireworks- Wauconda Park District, July 3 at 7:30
We will be adding to the fireworks in Chicago list over the next few days, so please send us a message if we haven’t included your favorite July 4 show. Check back for more updates on things to do in the city, restaurants with Fourth of July specials, and other patriotic events.
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Chicago artists deserve our support, and one local filmmaker is creating a documentary that explores the story of blind athletes from the Chicago area and across the country. The film, Feeling Judo, will tell the personal stories of blind judo players both on and off the mat.
The film is currently in production, and has recently launched an IndieGoGo fundraiser to help cover production costs to complete the project. When released, a portion of the proceeds from the film will go to benefit blind judo athletes as they travel to tournaments to compete in their sport.
Feeling Judo goes beyond just investigating the sport, and investigates the world of the athletes featured in the film. Viewers will learn about the day-to-day lives of the judo players and will learn how someone without vision can compete in a sport that you might think requires sight in order to excel. You won’t need to know a lot about judo to appreciate what these talented athletes are able to accomplish in competition.
I have the distinct pleasure of helping with the social media campaign for Feeling Judo, and I have been able to connect with some amazing people who share a passion for independent film, judo, and supporting blind athletes. My husband is the director of the film and a judo student himself. He has worked tirelessly for the last six months to make this documentary a reality.
The fundraiser has just over a month left, and a long way to go to meet its goal. Donations will be used to pay travel and production costs as the crew travels to speak to the athletes and film them on-location at judo tournaments. If you would like to learn more about this film, or you would like to contribute to the IndieGoGo fundraising campaign, please click here.
Sweet Chi Town would also like to take this opportunity to reach out to other artists in the Chicago area. If you are planning to run a crowdfunding campaign on IndieGoGo, KickStarter, GoFundMe, or any of the other fundraising sites, please fill out our “contact us” form on the “About Sweet Chi Town” page for the chance to be featured on our blog and promoted on our social media pages.
The recent warm weather means that summer concerts and festivals are just around the corner. One of the best concert series in Chicago is the Jammin’ at the Zoo event held at Lincoln Park Zoo. Tickets are on sale now for the June 22 concert, which features the Plain White T’s.
The opening acts for the concert have not yet been announced, but it is certain that the Plain White T’s will be the headlining act. Advance tickets for the event are $24 for adults and $13 for children ages 4-12. If tickets are still available on the day of the concert, they can be purchased for $29 for adults and $15 for children. All kids under the age of four get in for free. Lincoln Park Zoo members can enjoy a $2 discount off of the ticket prices. Remember, there is no will-call for Jammin’ at the Zoo.
All guests are allowed to bring lawn chairs and blankets to the concert, but outside food and drink is not permitted. You can purchase food and drinks, including beer, wine and mixed drinks, at carts set up throughout the event and at two zoo cafes.
The gates open for the concert at 7:00 pm, but members can enter the gates at 6:45. The first band goes on at 7:30, with the second act taking the stage at 9:15. The evening ends at 10:30 pm. If you are planning to walk around to visit the animals before the show, please note that the zoo will close at 6:00 pm to allow for set-up of the event. No one will be permitted on the grounds of the zoo during this time.
If you want to attend the first show of the Jammin’ at the Zoo concert series, you can purchase tickets here. As always, the proceeds from the event will go to help the animals at the Lincoln Park Zoo.