#Chicago blog

The ultimate Chicago events, restaurants, bars and nightlife blog

The Nichols Bridgeway

The Nichols Bridgeway Photograph courtesy of the Art Institute of Chicago

A new study finds that Chicago isn't a great city for recreation

Posted by Zach Long on July 23, 2014 at 3:44pm

WalletHub recently released a list of the 100 best and worst cities for recreation in the U.S. And, according to the results, Chicago isn't up to snuff, coming in at No. 62 overall. Cities were ranked based on factors like affordability, quality of parks, quality of recreational facilities and weather conditions.

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Jack White, pale and sad, at a Cubs game.

Jack White, pale and sad, at a Cubs game.

Why so sad, Jack White?

Posted by Laura Baginski on July 23, 2014 at 3:17pm

It's the scowl seen across the Internet today: Jack White, at last night's Cubs game, seemingly trying to figure out where that awful smell is coming from. In the spirit of Sad Kanye and Sad Keanu, we give you Sad Jack White, hanging out in iconic Chicago scenes.

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Vigilante Press

Vigilante Press Photograph: Emily Madigan

Batman Day celebrates the Dark Knight's 75th anniversary

Posted by Zach Long on July 23, 2014 at 1:13pm

It's been 75 years since the Dark Knight made his debut in 1939 and quickly became one of America's most beloved comic book characters. Today, comic book shops all over the nation are celebrating Batman Day by giving away a free comic that reimagines the character's origin story as depicted in Detective Comics #27.

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Three Dots and a Dash was named Best New American Cocktail Bar at Tales of the Cocktail.

Three Dots and a Dash was named Best New American Cocktail Bar at Tales of the Cocktail.

Three Dots and a Dash, the Aviary win at Tales of the Cocktail

Posted by Amy Cavanaugh on July 21, 2014 at 3:01pm

If you went out to a Chicago cocktail bar this weekend, you may have noticed something missing. Most of the top bartenders in the city were down in New Orleans for Tales of the Cocktail, an annual cocktail festival. Chicago took home two big awards this year: Three Dots and a Dash was named Best New American Cocktail Bar, while the Aviary won World's Best Cocktail Menu.

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Single of the Week: Jim, 29

Single of the Week: Jim, 29

Single of the Week: Jim, 29

Posted by Laura Baginski on Jul 21, 2014 at 10:24am

Jim, 29
Andersonville

Interested in Men

My idea of a perfect first date I love to explore the city and try new things. I also love great conversation with someone who is passionate. Thus, finding a spot that is new to both of us where we can talk and get to know each other. A place known for their whiskey cocktails would be top of my list.

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MakerBot Replicator

MakerBot Replicator Photograph courtesy of MakerBot

Now you can buy 3D printers at Chicago Home Depot stores

Posted by Zach Long on Jul 14, 2014 at 3:45pm

Looking for a way to create your own action figure or find a replacement part for a home appliance? Today, MakerBot announced that it will begin selling its Replicator Desktop 3D Printers in a handful for Home Depot stores across the US. It just so happens that three of those store are located in Chicago (1232 W North Ave, 1300 S Clinton St, 2665 N Halsted St). Beginning today, customers will be able to visit the aforementioned Home Depot stores to learn more about 3D printing, view live demonstrations and take home a freshly printed souvenier.

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Meet Hala, our Single of the Week

Posted by Laura Baginski on Jul 14, 2014 at 9:38am

Hala, 24
Lincoln Park

Interested in Men

My idea of a perfect first date My perfect first date is preceded by me perfecting the elegant-without-trying-too-hard look, which is no small feat. We meet for a casual dinner, and I am very happy that you are not wearing a fedora.

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Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan in <em>Masters of Sex</em>

Michael Sheen and Lizzy Caplan in Masters of Sex

The summer Sunday TV schedule just got a lot more crowded

Posted by Jessica Johnson on Jul 11, 2014 at 3:15pm

Showtime and FX are joining the late weekend scrum with three premieres this weekend. The sophomore seasons of troubled melodrama Ray Donovan launches at 8pm this Sunday, followed be the glowing return of the masterful Masters of Sex at 9pm, while FX lifts the curtain on its vampire horror epidemic The Strain (you know, the thing with worm in the eye). Check out our reviews

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Josephine Bornebusch and Greg Poehler in <em>Welcome to Sweden</em> and Kasey Rohl, Andrea Martin, Benjamin Arthur and Azura Skye in <em>Working the Engels</em>

Josephine Bornebusch and Greg Poehler in Welcome to Sweden and Kasey Rohl, Andrea Martin, Benjamin Arthur and Azura Skye in Working the Engels

TV reviews: Welcome to Sweden and Working the Engels

  • Rated as: 2/5

Posted by Jessica Johnson on Jul 10, 2014 at 12:20pm

Once the source of several quality sitcoms, NBC's well is running a little dry. In these new Thursday night hopefuls, Greg Poheler proves that his sister's wildly charismatic onscreen presence is not a genetic characteristic, while Kacey Rohl (who was intensely engaging in Hannibal) is unable to make sense of lazily written lead.

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Paul McCartney brings his Out There tour to the United Center, July 9, 2014.

Paul McCartney brings his Out There tour to the United Center, July 9, 2014. Photographer: cousindaniel.com

Photos: Paul McCartney at United Center

Posted by Zach Long on Jul 10, 2014 at 10:45am

Paul McCartney has always been the consummate performer, armed with a sly smile and a wry theatricality that suggests that he's having just as much fun as the audience at his concerts. The former Beatle has been in "give the people what they want" mode for the past few decades, and last night during his show at the United Center he did just that. With a four piece band in tow, Macca made his way through a career-spanning, 39-song set that was heavy on Beatles hits, but made time for some essential Wings cuts as well as a few tracks from his recent LP, New.

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Taquero taco at Taste of Chicago.

Taquero taco at Taste of Chicago. Photograph: Martha Williams

15 new dishes at Taste of Chicago 2014, ranked worst to best

Posted by Amy Cavanaugh on July 9, 2014 at 3:52pm

Ah, the Taste of Chicago, our annual chance to take an extended lunch break and go to town on sausages, fried food and Rainbow Cones. While standbys like Billy Goat Tavern, BJ's Market and Ricobene's are back again, this year there are six new stands setting up each day. Plus, there's a rotating selection of food trucks and pop-up restaurants. We tried all the "taste portions" from the new stands, most of which cost 5 tickets (about $3.50), plus some food truck items.

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Rahm Emanuel

Rahm Emanuel Photograph: Drew Reynolds

Rahm supports a $13 minimum wage by 2018

Posted by Beth Newhart on July 8, 2014 at 2:45pm

Eariler today, the Minimum Wage Working Group, a team of leaders gathered by Mayor Rahm Emanuel, recommended the introduction of a $13 minimum wage for the city of Chicago by 2018. The committee stated that the increase will benefit over 400,000 Chicago workers and also add $800 million to the local economy over the next four years. "I fully support the proposal by the Working Group to raise Chicago's minimum wage to $13 in the next four years," Rahm stated.

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Some Lollapalooza after shows are still available

Posted by Samuel Israel on Jul 8, 2014 at 2:16pm

Concertgoing is no longer a hobby for the procrastinator. It has been less than a month since Lollapalooza released its after show list, and nearly all the tickets have been sold. Many of them immediately. That rate of ticket purchasing is bewildering. Fortunately, there have been a couple newly announced shows, and a few really good performances are still on market. Jump on them now.

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Chicago Dancing Festival

Chicago Dancing Festival Photograph: Cheryl Mann

Chicago Dancing Festival tickets will be released today at noon

Posted by Zach Long on Jul 8, 2014 at 10:15am

The Chicago Dancing Festival takes place August 20-23, but if you're planning on attending the events at the Harris Theater or the Museum of Contemporary Art, you'll need to claim your free tickets today and tomorrow. Act fast, because these tickets tend to disappear pretty quickly. Tickets for the Harris Theater program on August 20 featuring Hubbard Street Dance, the Julliard School and the Joffrey Ballet will be released at noon today (July 8). Tickets are available at the Harris Theater Box Office (205 E Randolph Dr) or can be reserved by calling 312-334-7777.

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LollaShop 2013

LollaShop 2013 Photograph courtesy of Lollapalooza

LollaShop moves to Block 37

Posted by Zach Long on Jul 7, 2014 at 3:45pm

Skip the merch tent lines and grab some banana pudding while you're at it. The Lollapalooza pop-up store LollaShop will be returning to Chicago for a third year, but this time it will be taking up residence at Block 37, the State Street shopping mall best known for housing Magnolia Bakery. Shoppers can head to the store beginning on July 25 to stock up on Lollapalooza merchandise before gates open at the festival on August 1.

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EDM gather at Chicago's newest music festival, Riverwest, 4th of July weekend, 2014.

EDM gather at Chicago's newest music festival, Riverwest, 4th of July weekend, 2014. Photograph: Kristine Kuczora

Riverwest Music Festival throws party, faces complaints

Posted by Brent DiCrescenzo on Jul 7, 2014 at 1:27pm

With canceled shows, inaccessible acts and extra costs, the inaugural EDM event had issues. Ticket-holders reported of being denied access to the Belvedere Terrace Stage, one of the three main stages billed, set atop the roof of Estate nightclub. There is a Facebook group set up to demand refunds. Still, EDM fans wrapped in neon, tank tops and costumes partied hard. Check out the photos.

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Where to celebrate Chicago Craft Gin Week

Posted by Amy Cavanaugh on Jul 7, 2014 at 11:56am

This week is Chicago Craft Gin Week, which was started a few years ago by Off Color Brewing's John Laffler. There's an event a day, plus special gin cocktails available at bars and restaurants all week, and tours of area distilleries. Here are my picks for the must-attend events.

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Afrojack

Afrojack Photograph: Scott Kowalchyk for for ElectricZooFestival.com

Afrojack brings fireworks to Navy Pier this weekend

Posted by Brent DiCrescenzo on Jul 3, 2014 at 2:27pm

For the last few years, Afrojack has ranked in the top ten of DJ Mag's Top 100 DJs, a sort of BCS rankings of electronic music. He has been featured in New Yorker profiles and a Super Bowl ad. Though only recently did the 26 year old Holland native, born Nick van de Wall, finally drop his debut album, Forget the World. On Saturday, he plays Navy Pier—with a fireworks show. The superstar Dutch DJ chats with us about Sting, soccer, jacking bodies and ignoring critics.

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Jonah Rawitz at the National High School Theatre Awards with his mother, Lauren Rawitz, who directed Stevenson High School's production of In the Heights.

Jonah Rawitz at the National High School Theatre Awards with his mother, Lauren Rawitz, who directed Stevenson High School's production of In the Heights.

Q&A: Jonah Rawitz

Posted by Elizabeth Newhart on Jul 3, 2014 at 12:45pm

Broadway was bustling with future talent on Monday night for the sixth annual National High School Musical Theater Awards at the Minskoff Theatre. After whittling a starting pool of 60,000 teenagers from across the country down to just 56, the finalists took the stage for group and solo performances. Jonah Rawitz, a student at Lincolnshire's Adlai E. Stevenson High School, took the $10K top prize as Best Actor. We spoke with the Buffalo Grove native about nabbing the "Jimmy" award.

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Lobster Roll at Acadia

Lobster Roll at Acadia Photograph: Anthony Thalier

The 8 best lobster rolls in Chicago

Posted by Amy Cavanaugh on Jul 2, 2014 at 3:03pm

When it comes to lobster rolls, since I grew up closer to Long Island Sound than to Maine, I am in the Connecticut-style camp, which means I prefer my lobster rolls to be served warm with butter on a toasted bun. That's not to say that I don't love a good Maine lobster roll, when the meat is bound with just a hint of mayo and maybe a little spice. There are dozens of lobster rolls in Chicago, but these eight are the closest thing to eating in New England.

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