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If you are planning to come in a day or two early, or leave a couple of days after the conference, there is plenty to see and do in and around Chicago. Here are some recommendations by our volunteers as well as links to other sites.
River Cruise: Architecture buffs can catch sight of the earliest skyscrapers, built between the 1870s and the 1930s, like the art deco Chicago Board of Trade Building; and also explore the international, modern, and postmodern movements, from the powerful, minimalist work of Mies van der Rohe to the new eclecticism. Don't miss the Chicago Architecture Foundation's 90-minute narrated Architecture River Cruise. For further information, check out the Chicago Architecture Foundation
Walking Tours: Frank Lloyd Wright fans can visit Robie House, perhaps one of his most significant residences at 5757 S. Woodlawn. Special walking tours of the vicinity are scheduled on Fridays and Saturdays at 2 pm. For ticket information, call (708) 848-1976 or (773) 834-1947 or check out the Robie House website for a full array of programs and tours.
Chicago's museums explore a variety of subjects including history, modern art, African-American culture, astronomy and natural history. Some museums offer free admission daily and others are free on designated days. Here are some of the many museums you can visit
The Field Museum at 1400 S. Lake Shore Drive. You can revisit an era of style and grace with 'Jacqueline Kennedy: White House Years Selections from the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum Exhibit'.
The Museum of Science and Industry at 5700 S. Lake Shore Drive. Don't miss the fabulous 'Body Worlds' exhibit, The Anatomical Exhibition of Real Human Bodies.
Here is a comprehensive list of Chicago's museums
SEARS TO HANCOCK
No visit to Chicago is complete without a experiencing spectacular views spanning up to 80 miles and 4 states. Ride up to the Sears Tower skydeck or a the Hancock 'Big John' Observatory.
SOME OTHER ATTRACTIONS
Lincoln Zoo: From African Safari Rides to Paddle Boat Rides you can do it all at the Lincoln Zoo. Located at 2200 North Cannon Drive, at Lake Shore Drive and Fullerton Parkway, the Zoo is open 365 days a year and FREE every day.
Millenium Park Check out Chicago's latest attraction - The Millennium Park. Located in downtown Chicago on Michigan Avenue between Randolph and Monroe Streets, the 24.5-acre park has everything from interactive public art and ice skating to al fresco dining and free classical music presentations by the Grant Park Orchestra and Chorus. Among the park's prominent features are the Frank Gehry-designed Jay Pritzker Pavilion; the interactive Crown Fountain by Jaume Plensa; the contemporary Lurie Garden designed by the team of Kathryn Gustafson, Piet Oudolf and Robert Israel; and Anish Kapoor's hugely popular Cloud Gate sculpture.
Navy Pier: Located on Lake Michigan, just East of Chicago's Downtown, Navy Pier has been a Chicago landmark since it first opened in 1916. Originally designed as both a shipping and recreational facility, the Pier also served as a military training site during two world wars, a venue for concerts and exhibitions, and the temporary home for a once-fledgling University of Illinois' Chicago campus. Navy Pier now showcases a unique collection of restaurants and shops in addition to unequaled recreational and exhibition facilities -- in a setting like no other.
From hot dogs and steak to the famous Chicago deep-dish pizza, you can get it all in the Windy city. For more on dining check out these links Chicago Magazine Dining Guide
A SHORT WALK FROM THE INTERNATIONAL HOUSE
The Lake Front Park (accessed from 55-56th Street) in Hyde Park is ideal for picnics, and a short walk from the International House. Check out some pictures of Promontory Park.
Whatever your taste, there is something for you in the Windy City!!! Hope you have a fun time in Chicago.