So you’re packing your bags and headed to the windy city for a weekend of Breeders’ Cup “Win and You’re In” races? The Arlington Million is sure to impress, and will undoubtedly be worth your while to attend. Your track destination is located in Arlington Heights, roughly 25 miles from the center of Chicago itself. This little city is the perfect getaway, yet is still close enough to charge into the city and have some fun. We’re going to mix it up this trip, fusing small town charm with the rustle and bustle of the big city. You’re in for a wild ride, and to kick it off, head to:
Laser Quest: Full-time job going mature adult by day, kid at heart by night? This is the place for you. After all, when was the last time you dove into a state of the art, multi-level laser tag venue, complete with music and special effects? Bring your imagination to life, and definitely bring some friends along to join in the fun.
With a plethora of different package options (string together enough laser-goers and you’ll have the place to yourselves!), Laser Quest has options to cater to all schedules. Call ahead to reserve your spot, and pick your teams!
The décor in this place is out of control, in the best way possible:
Chicago: Millennium Park: Prepare to be impressed – or so one would hope considering that our next hotspot took four years longer to complete than planned and proved enormously overbudget. Just north of the Art Institute, Millennium Park embodies numerous sculptures, each with their own name, purpose, and story. Be sure to check out the Crown Fountain while you’re there, made of two glass-block columns with LED display facing each other rotating 1,000 faces of Chicago residents at random for approximately five minutes (know any Chicagoans? I’d love to know how they picked the faces ...) Finish up your trip to Millennium Park with a walk through Lucie’s Garden, spanning an impressive 2.5 miles. The best part about the whole experience – it won’t cost you a penny to enter. Enjoy!
Here’s the pavilion in Lurie’s Park:
The Blue Man Group at Briar City Theatre: Prepare yourself for one of my very favorite recommendations. Elate your senses and transport yourself away from everyday life with the Blue Man Group. No idea what I’m talking about? The Blue Man Group combines music, technology and comedy to create a form of entertainment that is surely unlike anything you’ve ever experienced, and certainly cannot be compared with any other show on the market (or on Broadway). With theatres in Chicago, Boston, Las Vegas, New York, and other super cities; this is one performance that is well worth your time. Be sure to call ahead to reserve tickets, as shows tend to book fast!
Did I mention the group’s name is no play on words; they are quite literally ‘blue’ …
Peggy Kinnane's Irish Restaurant & Pub: Time to head back to the Arlington Heights homestead and get in touch with our Irish roots. Track down your friends and brainstorm a toast, because it’s time for a Guinness. This all-things Irish pub is unique in that most of the structure - wood and stone - is from County Clare, Ireland, after being imported to the U.S. by the pubs owner. Head over with your crew for Thursday Night trivia (singlehandedly one of the world’s most clever creations), and grab an order of curry chips for the table – they are absolutely divine and a staple in the motherland! Up for a left field summer drink? Go for the Salty Melon (watermelon, that is) Margarita to start the night with a bang! Slàinte!
For a weekend away, Chicago is the go to for all things racing in August. With attractions and sights to appeal to all patrons, you simply cannot go wrong in the Windy City. Fuel your inner child with a trip to Laser Quest, or embark on a serene trip around Millennium Park – the choice is yours. Whatever you do choose, you’re bound to have a good time before and after heading to the track to handicap the Arlington Million. Until next time racegoers, Cheers!