If you’re headed to Chicago for Sage Summit, there is tons to do on your down time. However, there is no way you could visit all the places that make Chicago wonderful in the short time you’ll be there. We’ve made a list of the top ten things to do in Chicago while you’re attending Sage Summit to make it a little easier on you.
Visit the Bean
Also known as “Cloud Gate” (although no one calls it that), visiting the bean is a classic Chicago tourist attraction. A public art exhibit, visiting the bean will not put a dent in your wallet as it is free to see. Snap a pic in the reflection of this metallic art piece with a view of the Chicago skyline in the background.
Second City is an improv comedy club and school that gave name to some of the most iconic comedic legends. Alumni of Second City include Jim Belushi, Chris Farley, Steve Carrell, Stephen Colbert, Dan Aykyord, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Mike Myers and many others. For only $30, you can catch a show and maybe see the next big name in comedy.
Skydeck Chicago at Willis Tower
Skydeck Chicago is another classic event to do when visiting the windy city. You will be able to view the entire city, and test your fear of heights by standing on a see-through floor from 1,353 feet up. Lines for this attraction can leave you standing around for hours, so splurge on a fast pass for $49 to see the city without the wait.
Catch a Cubs game at Wrigley field to watch the all-american sport in one of the oldest fields in the majors. Built in 1914, the field still has its iconic brick outfield wall covered in ivy. It was at Wrigley field where Babe Ruth called his homerun hit to center field in the 1932 World Series.
Best Chicago Dog
You can’t go to Chicago without taking a bite of the iconic Chicago dog, topped with onions, a pickle spear and mustard (NO ketchup). If you’re willing to head a little outside of the city to get the best of the best Chicago dog, head to Gene’s & Jude’s near the O’Hare airport at 2720 River Road in River Grove. The trip is well worth it to grab a dog out of the old school hot dog stand, where no ketchup is allowed. If you want to stay in the downtown area, head to Redhot Ranch which is located either at 2072 N. Western Ave or 3057 N. Ashland Ave for the second best Chicago dog.
Best Deep Dish Pizza
Another foodie item that you can’t leave Chicago without trying, deep dish pizza. The jury is out on the best one to stop by for and that is Lou Malnati’s Deep Dish. There will be a wait for a table at one of the locations across the city, but they will allow you to put your pizza order in while you wait which means a hot and fresh pie will be arriving by the time you take your seat. If you like it enough, you can even send yourself a pizza home. Check out the locations here.
You could probably spend a whole day at Navy Pier with all of the fun things to do there. There are restaurants, an IMAX theatre, fountains for the kids to splash in, amusement rides, museums, shopping and a view of the lake. No matter how many people are in your group, this has something to please anyone.
If you’re a lover of the blues, or music in general, you have to stop in for a show at this old time blues club. Don’t be deterred by the décor, as it only adds to the classic blues feel. The club plays live blues every night and also offers some southern barbeque cooking.
Old Town Pour House
If you’re in the mood to catch a game and drink a beer, check out Old Town Pour House. This large bar has 90 beers on tap, Chicago’s largest selection, so you won’t even make a dent in trying them all. They also have a great menu that gives a new name to “bar” food.
First Lady Architecture Tour
Chicago’s First Lady Architecture Tour gives a whole new view of the city. This boat tour winds through Chicago and a passionate guide explains the history of the architecture and why it matters today. It also supports a good cause, as a portion of the ticket sales are donated to architecture education with the Chicago Architecture Foundation.