Happy Friday Chicago!
Secret Chicago wants to help you make the most of your free time and keep you informed! We’ll be putting out “Don’t miss” and “ICYMI” plans and news for you each week, so you’ll always catch an incredible event or story. Here are some of them that you may have missed over the last week.
At the start of 2022, after a tumultuous couple of years with closures and mercurial mitigation measures, Chicago’s beloved not-for-profit Shedd Aquarium announced a transformational ‘Centennial Commitment’ that came with exciting plans for a large-scale expansion.
With the aquarium’s 100th anniversary in 2030, the plans involved a $500 million 8-year project that would expand and improve the aquarium massively. All the cherished aquarium needed was the green light from the Chicago Plan Commission which was finally given this week.
Several important exterior enhancements to the aquarium’s historic building and surrounding greenspace were unanimously approved including activating Shedd’s gardens and augmenting its entry pavilion to help make these spaces more engaging and accessible for guests. The milestone in Shedd Aquarium’s expansion measures means that onsite construction at the aquarium can now begin in early 2023.
Having treated Chicago to some incredible spectacles last year, including shows inspired by “The Obama Portraits” and the “Frida Kahlo: Timeless” exhibition, the Art on the MART’s scintillating summer schedule will begin on Thursday, June 30.
Taking place nightly at 9:00 pm and 9:30 pm, the new schedule will bring to a close Floe and Choral as well astwo climate change-themed projections presented in partnership with Shedd Aquarium.
These will pass the baton on to several new exciting pieces being displayed on the 25-story-tall face of the Merchandise Mar for a blockbuster summer 2022 program. Premiering Thursday, June 30, at 9 pm, all 34 digital projectors will begin bringing to life Billiken by Shkunna Stewart and Wills Glasspiegel as well as explore by Jonas Denzel through Wednesday, September 7.Read the full article here.
According to WalletHub’s annual list, Illinois sits at a hard-earned No. 5. in the “2022’s Most Fun States in America” compilation. California is No. 1 with Florida coming next, then Nevada, New York, and IL.
Illinois as a whole offers a lot of sparkling attractions and day trips, but we must highlight Chicago’s illustrious entertainment industry. From boozy brunches to standup comedy clubs, and endless gorgeous lakeside days, Chicago and IL sit firmly at a #1 ranking in our opinion. Following Illinois on the list is Colorado, then Washington.
Cook County has a new flag! Designed by a suburban high schooler as part of a competition for Cook County residents, the innovative design pays tribute to waterways in the area and social justice policies.
County’s commissioners then met Tuesday on Flag Day to pick a design. An appointed flag advisory panel, which featured historians, board commissioners, museum directors, and other county members, first narrowed down the search to six flags in March. Finalists chosen in March were then paired with volunteer mentors and professional designers to refine the submitted designs.
A local favorite Pride display is back and better than ever. After online backlash last year, the owners of the house felt compelled to really go all out. Jesse Campbell and Nicholas Vazquez’s house is known to locals as the Pride House. Each June, it rolls out another bright rainbow display with encouraging words and celebratory decor.
Last year, the display included rainbow-painted stairs. This year, the 12-foot-tall paintbrush leads to a rainbow paint trail from the curb to the porch’s roof. Alongside the mural stands an oversized unicorn aptly named Diamond Buttercup Mist. Surrounding Diamond are 36 flags representing the LGBTQIA+ community.
One of the most treasured Irish pubs in Chicago, and to some the entire United States, will be closing its doors for good this weekend.
Since opening Emmit’s Irish Pub in 1996 retired firemen Kevin Doherty and Ron Halvorsen have overseen a monumental chapter in the building’s history. The two bought the pub 26 years ago when it was known as O’Sullivans Tavern and redesigned the premises installing an iconic bar built by Halvorsen, and covering the walls with a motley mix of old photos, vintage items, jerseys, news clippings, and Irish decor.
The bar went on to grow in stature, establishing a reputation for its performances from the Shannon Rovers Irish Pipe Bandits, various loyal clubs, several high-profile movie appearances, and, of course, its notorious St Patrick’s Day parties. Now, on June 25th the popular Irish bar will pour its last pints.
After opening in May of 2021, the Morton Arboretum’s arbor-inspired exhibition ‘Human + Nature‘ has been a huge success featuring five breathtaking sculptures by renowned multi-disciplinary South African artist Daniel Popper.
Now the Arboretum has unveiled three brand-new sculptures bringing the grand total to 8 gigantic arbor-inspired creations. The exhibition expansion includes two large-scale sculptures which will accompany the already existing sculptures through March 2023 and a permanent centennial sculpture being added as part of the Morton Arboretum’s yearlong centennial celebrations.
The Musée du Louvre™ in Paris is undeniably one of the most iconic and recognizable art museums worldwide, drawing over 7 million visitors a year to its famous rhombus-shaped glass museum.
This July, Louvre™ Fantastique: The Exhibition is coming to the Chicago area for a 360° experience, showcasing over 70 reimagined masterpieces that are famously on display at the Louvre™, from French artist Jacques-Louis David’s Oath of the Horatii to Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa, who has captivated art lovers all over the world.
Trickery & Distillery is a fascinating live theater show that combines the perfect recipe for a good time featuring live blues music, mind-boggling magic, delicious cocktails and hors d’oeuvres.
Make your way to the recently renovated multi-level Hubbard Inn in River North for this mind-blowing experience. The popular tavern-style restaurant and cocktail bar focuses on European-style dishes and old-fashioned cocktails with a modern twist. There Magician Jason Ladanye will divulge his best card cheat techniques from an up-close perspective and bring magic to life in front of your eyes while live blues plays throughout the venue.
Whether you’re looking for an exciting place to cool off in the hotter months or just looking to escape the urban monotony to revel in nature’s beauty, visiting a waterfall is never a bad idea. There is something so refreshing for the mind, body, and soul about witnessing the calm chaos of water cascade down into a misty pool below. But whilst states like Oregon and Washington have over 200 waterfalls, there is somewhat of a limited supply in Illinois.
Finding a waterfall close to the urban jungle that is Chicago can be a little difficult and so we’ve rounded up some of the best waterfalls near the Windy City where you can escape and admire nature’s magic!
[Featured image from Unsplash]