Monday, July 25, 2011

t minus three weeks!

Yesterday marked the 3-week countdown for the 1/2 Marathon my mom & I will be running in Chicago! This is my first run... so I'm going to assume its normal to feel like I am not even close to prepared!
An old logo... but I think I like it better than this year's.

But the real reason I am posting this today, is because it will be the first time for both of us in Chicago. Besides the marathon excuse, we are spending a few extra days on a mini vacation in Chi-town.

We are looking for any and ALL suggestions you have for tourist musts! We would love to know all the good places to:

• Shop
• Dine
• Sight see
and anything else you can think of that we just can't miss!

Thank you! And Happy Monday.


Jenna Lee said...

I have never been but I watched a special on a place called the Big Bar and EVERYTHING is HUGE servings even the drinks! YUMM!

Holly said...

Chicago is SUCH a fun city, I go there every year!! You have to try Portillo's Italian beef restaurant--they have so much more than just beef but it is amazing. And if you go, get their Chocolate won't regret it. And if you can't go there, I know that Al's Beef is a big hit, and just as good!!

Millennium Park and Navy Pier are probably the other biggest tourist spots. Also, if you feel like staying inside, I would highly recommend the Museum of Science and Industry--it's like a science and history museum combined and it is AWESOME!! They have some really great exhibits (including a German U-boat from WWI) and other awesome things, it's worth the price of admission (I think around $15).

Have a great time!

Sam W. said...

awesome!! you'll do great :) half marathons are my favorite distance to race!

Val said...

Chicago, is a awesome city and you are going to do great!

Unknown said...

Yay! You will absolutely love Chicago and will have such a wonderful time running along the water.

For fun shopping: obviously Michigan avenue, Armitage in Lincoln Park, Damen Ave in Bucktown, and Southport for fun boutiques!

Food: Hub 51, Paris Club, Hubbard Inn, Epic, and Rockit are all fun places in the River North {semi-downtown} area!

Also, De Cero in the West Loop for great margaritas, Dunlay's on Clark in Lincoln Park for great American food, or Ranalli's in Lincoln Park for my favorite pizza {plus you can sit outside, it is on Lincoln Ave.}!

Other than that, Millenium Park to see the bean, Navy Pier, Oak Street Beach, Buckingham Fountain, etc. You will see a ton of sights on your run!

Good luck and have a blast!!! xoxoxo

Nikki said...

I've never been either, but apparently you must try a chicago dog and a cannoli.

Nikki said...

Oh and after you run, because that would be really gross before ;) said...

How exciting!! You go girl! I am so impressed. You will love Chicago - it's one of my favorite cities in the US! I'd recommend the water tour to see all the architecture - the city is just beautiful!

Lara {simply irresistible} said...

wow. Impressed with the 1/2 marathon sign up. It will be so much fun. I've run a few races here (the longest was 9miles so I'm not as hardcore as you!) but they are always so much fun. I agree with a lot of Liz's recos above (Hub51 and Rockit are two of my favorite) also, Carnivale, Davanti Enoteca, Cafe Babareeba are all really great too.

I would recommend doing a boat tour (I love Wendella) it's a great way to see the city and get on the water. I like to take people to Second City for a comedy club. I'm not really into museums unless they are art, and I do really love the Art Institute if you're looking for something educational :)

You will have the best time here. Good luck training!

Stephanie said...

OMG! I'm running the RNR 1/2 in Chicago, too!!! How fun!!! I can't believe it's almost here!

Food- The Bongo Room for brunch (Wicker Park), Big Star for drinks and people watching (Wicker Park), HUB51 (River North), Lou Malnati's is my favorite deep dish pizza.

To do- you should do the architectural boat tour- make sure it's the boat tour one though. The Lincoln Park Zoo is free and fun to walk through.

Shop- Damen Ave in Bucktown & Armitage in Lincoln Park.

Let me know if you have any questions!

Michaela said...

Woohoo! So exciting. You're going to rock it!

Cathy said...

First, good luck with the half marathon! I've done a bunch of them (including the RNR half in Chicago last year) and they're all sorts of fun. The adrenaline, crowds, and live music will get you through the race. Just be sure to properly hydrate since it'll probably be hot.

As for places to eat in Chicago, you have to swing by Sugar Bliss for a cupcake. It's in the Loop, right across from Macy's on Wabash, in between Randolph and Washington.

We had brunch at Eleven City Diner after the Chicago Marathon. The French toast was beyond amazing.

You should also get some deep dish pizza. And go to Goose Island for a quality beer. I think they also give tours.

Everybody else has already made excellent recommendations, and I second (or third..) going on an architectural boat tour and seeing the Bean.

If you're thinking about going up on an observation deck, I prefer the Hancock over the Sear's Tower. Though head to the Signature Lounge in the Hancock instead of buying a ticket for the observation deck. The elevator ride is free, but you have to buy something (like a drink or a dessert). Though a drink is less than the ticket ($17).

Danielle Moss said...

You will love it! Liz really covered everything. I love everything she suggested. Tavern on Rush is also GREAT. I'd go to Hub 51 for brunch, or to Yolk (so good!).

Rockit is fun. You should go there one night for din and then head to Hubbard Inn across the street for drinks. If you DO want to go to a bar Benchmark is also really fun.

Rooftops: Citizen, The Wit + Zed 451. AND the terrace at the trump is amazing!

sherri lynn said...

Wow a half-marathon! I'm so impressed because I hate running!! And how fun to do it in Chicago. I've never been so I'm sorry I have no suggestions for you. But please post pictures of what you did so I can use it for a future visit! :)

Cat said...

How cool! I am so amazed that you are going to be doing this ... I am so not a runner {and the fact that your mom is joining you on this adventure ... wow!}

♥ Cat brideblu

{The Perfect Palette} said...

How exciting!!!! You are going to do GREAT!

xoxo, chrissy
The Perfect Palette

Carol {Everyday Delights} said...

That is so exciting! You are going to do great!

eleanorose said...

Chicago is amazing! I had SO much fun there last year. Definitely check out the bean :)

cailen ascher said...

good luck with the 1/2 marathon! that's totally awesome : )

cute blog - i'm your newest follower

birdie to be said...

Thank you SO much for all the encouragement & suggestions! We are so anxious for our trip & can't wait to visit the places you've mentioned!

jillian :: cornflake dreams. said...

YAHHH for a chicago visit! thats pretty awesome you're going to run a 1/2 marathon! i give you lots of credit! okay so chicago things...defiantly check out michigan avenue and state street for major shopping. i would visit the art insititute or the field museum, they are both fantastic. i love this little sandwich place off of michigan avenue called pastoral bread. they make the BEST caprese sandwich. of course check out the big sites like millennium park. if you go to navy pier (which is nice to see the water + boats but otherwise a tourist trap) stop by fox and obel. they have a great little grocery store and cafe (like panera but much better). i hope you have a great time!! xo jillian

ps i hope you can make it to boston! it would be wonderful to meet you.

Becca {A Blonde's Logic} said...

You'll do great! And you'll get addicted to 1/2s. I know I did after my first one!


Aubrey {All Things Bright and Beautiful} said...

You animal, you! I just did my first race at the beginning of the year (I did a Ragnar relay...I'm pretty sure I should've started with a straight 1/2, it just about killed me!)...this sounds totally awesome! And yes, you always feel unprepared, but you will feel absolutely awesome when it's all said and done! Good Luck!

Lesley Rials Napper said...

Yay for your 1/2 and a mini-Chicago vacation! It sounds like these girls covered everything! Since I just moved here, I'm still seeing and learning all the must see and do activities. Honestly, Michigan Ave. and the beach are touristy musts BUT I wouldn't go near those places on the weekend. We're doing the architecture boat tour on Saturday- I hear it's awesome. That might be something to look into also. Good luck with your run!