Sitting on the world-famous Lake Michigan in the state of Illinois, Chicago is one of the biggest and most historic cities in the entire US. It has the third largest population of any US city and is well known for its diverse, lively culture and rich nightlife scene. Between music, sport, shows, food, and other activities, there's almost nothing you can't find in the Windy City. Some of the most unique activities locals and tourists alike can enjoy in Chicago include kayaking along the city’s waterways or roller skating around nearby rinks. CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.
2. Martin Luther King, Jr. Roller Skating and Bowling Center
3.Fleetwood Roller Rink
4.Markham Roller Rink
Best Roller Skating Rinks in Chicago
- Overview, Photo: LG Photography/stock.adobe.com
- Martin Luther King, Jr. Roller Skating and Bowling Center, Photo: christie materni/EyeEm/stock.adobe.com
- Fleetwood Roller Rink, Photo: edwardolive/stock.adobe.com
- Markham Roller Rink, Photo: estradaanton/stock.adobe.com
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of Crin - Fotolia.com
Attraction Spotlight: Chicago History Museum
The Chicago History Museum is the oldest cultural institution in the city and features exhibits that showcase the history of the region. The Museum was recently renovated in 2006 and serves thousands of families and school groups each year through field trips and The Research Center. Next read: Things to Do in Chicago
The Chicago Historical Society was founded in 1856 with a building on Dearborn street in Chicago. That building was destroyed in the Great Chicago Fire in 1871 and the museum used temporary buildings until 1896 when construction began on a brand-new building by Henry Ives Cobb.
In 1920 the Society was able to acquire a collection of historical artifacts and paintings from the Charles F. Gunter estate. Some of the artifacts from this estate include Abraham Lincoln’s bed and a compass own by George Washington. AS the collection grew, so did the need for more space. Graham, Anderson, Probst, & White designed a new building in Lincoln Park in a Georgian Colonial style. The museum opened in 1932 and is the current location of the Chicago History Museum although several renovations and improvements have been done.
The Museum is open 7 days a week and participates in the Museums for All and Blue Star Museums programs. There are also discount days for Illinois residents. More details on admission and hours can be found online.
The Research Center
The Research Center is only open Tuesday through Friday and is where the printed materials can be accessed at the Chicago History Museum. The collection includes manuscripts, prints, photographs, architectural plans, and much more. The Research Center is free to the public but visitors must register with the service desk. Children under 6 years old are not permitted. There are online research opportunities through the Chicago History Museum website as well. Appointments to use the Research Center should be made in advance.
The Chicago History Museum has 9 permanent exhibits and space for temporary and rotating exhibits as well. Temporary exhibits are posted in detail for the year on the museum website.
The Great Chicago Adventure Film- This film runs every 30 minutes and explores the history and culture of Chicago from the Great Chicago Fire through the building of the Sears Tower in the 1970’s and President Obama’s Grant Park victory speech.
The Fifth Star Challenge- Chicago’s flag has 4 stars on it but this exhibit explores what the meaning of a fifth star would be. Visitors can cast their vote on what they want the fifth star to represent while learning about Chicago’s history.
Sensing Chicago- This interactive exhibit uses all 5 senses to explore the cultural differences and history of Chicago.
The Secret lives of Objects- Showcased in this exhibit are pieces from the collection that have been in storage for quite some time. Located in the Skyline Gallery, this exhibit features artifacts from across the country and through various periods of history.
Lincoln’s Chicago- This gallery is an homage to President Abraham Lincoln who had a second home in Chicago. The gallery showcases what the city was like during the time Lincoln would have lived and visited here.
Chicago Authored- Explore the authors that have shaped the culture of Chicago through multimedia experiences in this exhibit.
Chicago: Crossroads of America- Highlights of the Museum’s collected are featured in this exhibit that takes visitors through historical events of the past and present in Chicago.
Facing Freedom in America- Visitors can explore what freedom means for the many different generations of Americans that have lived in the Chicago Region over the last two centuries.
Vivian Maier’s Chicago- Urban Chicago life is the focus of this exhibit shown through the photographs of Vivian Maier.
Programs and Events
The Chicago History Museum offers a variety of programs and tours that provide a deeper exploration of the Chicago history or culture. There are lectures, Happy Hours, Movies in the Park, members exclusive events, cultural celebrations and more for the community and visitors to enjoy. There are also several different tours offered at and through the Chicago History Museum including a riverboat cruise, a walking tour, cemetery tour, running, trolley and bike tours, and a History Fit tour. Bus tours are also available for large groups and docent guided tours of the museum are available for school and community groups.
Annual Fourth of July Celebration- every July 4th, the Chicago History Museum celebrates with the community and hosts a daylong event full of family activities and more.
Hot Dog Fest- This annual summer festival is all about Chicagoans favorite food—the hot dog! The three-day festival features live music and food vendors.
1601 North Clark Street, Chicago Illinois, 60614, Phone: 312-642-4600
Venue Spotlight: Greenhouse Loft
The Greenhouse Loft is a sustainable urban space in the Chicago's Logan Square neighborhood that offers a light and romantic venue for celebrations such as weddings and various corporate functions. Boasting over 3,600 square feet of naturally lit, flexible and modern event space with 16-foot ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows, the Greenhouse Loft can accommodate up to 200 guests for indoor and outdoor ceremonies, and up to 250 guests for indoor receptions. The Loft also features a fully equipped kitchen and a green room, and an outdoor garden which is an ideal space for cocktail parties, and the Ultimate Photobooth portrait studio is next door to the venue.
The Greenhouse Loft features over 3,600 square feet of customizable space with 16-foot ceilings and floor-to-ceiling windows that boast beautiful views of the outdoor garden area. There is a fully equipped kitchen for catering and food preparation and a green room and bridal suite for the bride to get ready. The Ultimate Photobooth portrait studio is next door to the venue. An 8,000 square foot landscaped garden is accessible throughout the year and can accommodate up to 200 guests for an outdoor cocktail party or an intimate ceremony.
Services and amenities with the rental of the venue include a dedicated Greenhouse Loft Venue Manager to help with all the details before and on the day, the use of the loft space and outdoor garden, a collection of restored mid-century modern furniture, tables, wooden folding chairs, and vintage self-service coat racks and wood hangers. Also, include in the rental rate is personalized directional signage, built-in drapery, modern restrooms, dimmable lighting, a dance floor, security on-site for the duration the event, set-up, and clean-up of the site, and complimentary wireless Internet. Additional services available for an extra fee include indoor and outdoor parking, a lobby space on the second floor for indoor cocktail parties, and candle packages.
The Greenhouse Loft has partnered with seven award-winning caterers to provide fresh and locally sourced seasonal cuisine prepared in sustainable ways with high-quality ingredients and products. Guests can discuss and create customized menus to suit every budget and taste with a wide range of dining concepts on offer from the buffet and hors-d'oeuvres to plated dinners options.
The Greenhouse Loft is located at 2545 W Diversey Avenue and offers parking indoor and outdoor parking in nearby parking lots for an additional fee.
The Greenhouse Loft is within easy access of several hotels, restaurants, shops, as well as of the city’s top attractions such as the Magnificent Mile, the Garfield Park Conservatory, the Sky Deck on the 103rd floor of the former Sears Tower, the Richard H. Driehaus Museum, the Art Institute of Chicago (AIC), and the Chicago Cultural Center.
Other fun things to do while in the city range from a variety of docent-led tours of the iconic skyscrapers, beautiful hotels and legendary houses designed by the globally acclaimed architect, Frank Lloyd Wright; guided tours of some of Chicago’s best neighborhood pizzerias, and visiting some of the city’s most decadent dessert boutiques and chocolatiers.
2545 W Diversey Ave, Chicago, IL 60647, Phone: 312-733-5762
Venue Spotlight: Salvage One
Salvage One is a unique Chicago events venue that offers two floors of versatile space and a beautiful courtyard for outdoor functions. The 60,000 square foot vintage Chicago industrial-style warehouse features exposed brick walls and architectural detailing from other classic buildings, gleaming hardwood floors, an eclectic mix of vintage furniture, and salvaged stained glass windows with stunning skyline views. This one-of-a-kind venue is also a retail store with a constantly changing inventory that makes for a unique place for events and functions for chic, urban guests who are looking for something entirely different to the regular wedding venue. Indoor spaces can accommodate up to 250 guests for cocktail receptions and 200 for seated dinners, while a pretty landscaped outdoor courtyard offers a beautiful place for romantic ceremonies of up to 200 guests.
Salvage One features a selection of indoor and outdoor spaces for all types of events and functions from romantic ceremonies to lavish receptions.
A beautifully appointed courtyard and outdoor space with exposed brick walls covered in ivy are available for romantic ceremonies and services for up to 250 guests. The first floor is also home to an indoor ceremony and cocktail area with wooden church pews set in a theatre style, Greek columns, glittering chandeliers, and a vintage bar that can accommodate up to 175 seated guests and 250 standing. A natural aisle runner of grass leads couples towards a romantic arch of greenery for grand entrances or ceremonies.
The second floor of the venue has a reception space that can accommodate up to 250 guests for dinner and dancing and features wooden hardwood floors, exposed brick walls, vintage furniture and two stages for bands and DJs.
A gorgeously appointed three-room suite is located on the second floor for the bridal party and family to use as a dressing area and a place to relax before the event with tasteful couches, wood panel details, and a vast Hollywood-style mirror. The suite can accommodate up to 60 guests.
The third floor of the venue features a 2,400-square-foot meeting space that can accommodate up to 80 guests for seated dinners and 150 standing guests for cocktail receptions. The well-appointed site is perfect for private evening parties.
Rental of the venue includes amenities and services such as a bride and groom’s dressing area, a hardwood dance floor, a podium and/or stage for bands and DJs, a coat check room with an attendant, tables and chairs, a piano, outdoor lighting, set-up and clean-up of the venue, and security on the day of the event. Also included are a fully equipped kitchen for catering and food prep, tables and chairs, chandeliers and lamps, coffee tables, an onsite manager to take care of all the details, and public parking. Salvage One provides a list of preferred vendors for catering and beverages, décor, music and entertainment, event planners, and more.
Salvage One is located at 1840 W Hubbard Street and offers on-street public parking for guests.
1840 W Hubbard St, Chicago, IL 60622, Phone: 312-733-0098
Attraction Spotlight: Spudnik Press - Unique Community Based Art Center in Chicago
Art has molded and shaped the world we live in, triggering social change and progress, forging a path through history and changing countless lives, and yet the art world, even in the modern era, remains terribly unbalanced, with many up and coming and aspiring artists blocked off from the resources and platforms they need.
Art should be accessible to all, and artists should be able to enjoy easy access to the facilities, resources, and spaces they need to create and share their work. Unfortunately, due to financial and other limitations, many of them find it difficult. Spudnik Press aims to offer them a helping hand.
Spudnik Press - Community Based Art Center in Chicago
Spudnik Press is a community-based arts center situated in a former warehouse in West Town, Chicago. Offering professional printmaking facilities and tools, exhibition spaces, studio spaces, and more for artists and creatives, Spudnik Press is a real haven for creative minds who have found closed doors elsewhere around the city, unable to find the help and resources they require.
The Spudnik Press arts hub measures up at 4,800 square feet in size and is spread out into private studios, mixed-use spaces that are used for exhibitions and workshops, and a co-working space as well.Anyone wanting to get creative with printmaking in Chicago should definitely pay Spudnik Press a visit.
- Location - Spudnik Press is located at 1821 W Hubbard St, Suite 302, Chicago, IL 60622.
- Contact - To get in touch with Spudnik Press, you can call 312 563 0302.
- Opening Times - The business hours for Spudnik Press are from 12pm to 5pm on Tuesdays through to Fridays. The hours for the Open Studio at Spudnik Press are from 6pm to 10pm on Mondays through Thursdays and from 1pm to 5pm on Fridays and Saturdays.
- Become a Member - If you're an aspiring artist or maker in Chicago, joining up with Spudnik Press is one of the best ways to give your prospects a big boost. You'll be joining up with a friendly and diverse community of creative people, getting plenty of exclusive benefits as well like discounts on classes and workshops, discounts for Open Studio sessions, free or discounted registration on various member programs, exclusive meeting and event invitations, and a welcome gift too.
- Classes and Workshops - Artistic people and makers wishing to enhance their skills, learn new things, and broaden their artistic horizons should certainly consider attending the many classes and workshops held at Spudnik Press. From classes in printmaking and risography to workshops on screenprinting, etching, T-shirts and tote bag designs, and more, lots of different subjects and skills are touched on in these classes and you can really learn a lot, with experienced and friendly instructors and artists leading each session. Check out the full range of classes and workshops on the official Spudnik Press site and reserve your spot today. Custom workshops can also be arranged for groups of up to 24 people, ideal for staff outings, teambuilding activities, parties, and more.
- Private Lessons - If you prefer more of a one on one experience, Private Lessons are also available with Spudnik Press across all printmaking domains and processes including intaglio, lithography, book binding, and screenprinting. These classes usually run for three hours and will involve a personalized educational approach tailored to your needs, abilities, and experience, starting off with a simple orientation and introduction and proceeding through to the planning of a project and the execution of that project. Within a few lessons, students can become authorized to start printing at Spudnik Press.
- Using the Studio - For any kind of printing, printmaking, and related processes, Spudnik Press is the place to be. The studio, equipped with all the tools and resources you could possibly need for professional grade print processes and fine art publishing, is available for hourly rental. All new visitors to Spudnik Press will need to undergo a one hour authorization process to get familiar with the equipment and be allowed to use it. Those who don't have any experience with printmaking will need to take a class or workshop first of all. Once you're authorized, you can enjoy all of the facilities of the studio.
- Open Studio - Open Studio sessions are held on a weekly basis at Spudnik Press, offering full access to the studio's facilities at a reduced price to all authorized artists and makers. A studio monitor will be on hand at all times to offer assistance and help as needed, and you don't need to make any reservations. You can simply drop in and start using the tools for etching, lithography, screenprinting, and more.