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20 New Year’s resolutions for every Chicagoan

20 New Year’s resolutions for every Chicagoan
Photograph: CC/Flickr/Steven Vance

The start of a new year is a time of hope and change—a watershed moment in our personal growth, when we look inward, determine who we are and make some tough decisions about who we want to be. About a week or two into the new year, however, we give all that shit up. We resign ourselves to the fact that maybe a vegan diet isn’t for us and begin wondering "will one more cigarette really hurt?"

Still, there’s a lot to look forward to in 2017, and better health and increased wealth are noble (albeit unlikely) goals to set for ourselves. If you’re still stressing about bailing on your 2016’s New Year's resolutions before MLK Day, don’t fret. We have a brand new list of lofty, but attainable, resolutions every Chicagoan should consider in 2017.

1. Live like it's 2013 again, and take more public transportation and less Uber.

2. Stop calling dibs every time a few snowflakes fall.

3. Get over how goofy Divvy bikes look, and take a ride along the lakefront.

4. Attend all four days of Lollapalooza (even if it's just for the headliners).

5. Admit that we really do enjoy summer music festival season, even though we complain about the sheer number of events and "how commercial” they've all become.

6. Take some time to experience the city's rich culture and actually take advantage of those free museum days.

7. Stop faking your Chicago Cubs loyalty and take the time to learn a bit about the team—all of the players have names!

8. Stop pausing before each meal to Instagram a photo of food or drinks (well, maybe not every meal).

9. Resist the urge to sit on your couch every weekend and explore a new neighborhood or revisit one of Chicago's best attractions.

10. Put that local pride to the test and get involved with a community organization that benefits your neighborhood.

11. To try out some of the Loop’s new lunch spots (hello, Revival Food Hall!) and stop eating at the same chain every single day (goodbye, Golden Arches!).

12. Book some reservations during Chicago Restaurant Week and try something new (your favorite take-out spot will survive a week without your patronage).

13. Enter the Hamilton lottery every day like you promised, so you don’t have to wait to see what all the hype’s about.

14. Go check out Navy Pier now that everyone claims it's at least somewhat cool.

15. Go on an Architecture Foundation boat tour and learn some fun facts about city buildings, so you can show off the next time Mom comes to visit.

16. Finally dust off that bike you bought and stop taking the train to work.

17. Learn how to say “no” to the Michigan Avenue shop windows. (Do you really need that red leather skirt at Zara?)

18. See more live music at Chicago's best music venues, and eat, drink and shop local as much as humanly possible.

19. Splurge on a helicopter tour and experience the city from 1,000 feet.

20. Explore newly-opened sections of the Chicago Riverwalk and grab a bottle of wine at the City Winery. 

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