Explore This! Chicago, Illinois

Filed in Explore This , The Quirky Lover Posted on July 25, 2011 @ 2:00 pm 6 comments

Recently, I’ve been spending a bit of time hanging around Chicago. Well, not me personally, but through my reading of Jim Butcher’s Harry Dresden books, it feels like I have, lol. Anyway, I thought it would be neat to see the landscape on which Mr. Dresden has been running around naked, getting shot at, fighting werewolves (among other creepy creatures), and basically causing all manner of chaos.

In searching for today’s pictures, I was surprised by what was most available: city pictures. I had a hard time finding any greenery! I’m thinking this may be because a more intimate knowledge of the city is needed; a better source for which to locate the parts of this town that haven’t been touched by urban sprawl.

The city at night.

Chicago could easily fit the description of ‘urban jungle’.

Most of what I know of Chicago comes in the form of its major league 
sports teams: the Bears, the Bulls, the Cubs, the White Sox, 
the Blackhawks (did I miss any?)

The Willis Tower (formerly known as The Sears Tower)

If I remember correctly, Chicago is one of those cities that has experienced 
disaster more than once, having to be rebuilt after each occurrence. The sign
 for Old Town hopefully leads the way to something salvaged from former times.
Besides the cityscapes, the other most numerous pictures I found for 
Chicago featured stunning architecture and artwork.

Cloud Gate at Grant Park

Does anyone know the story behind this?

At last, a picture of Grant Park, with some green within the city! Grant Park has
 been described as “Chicago’s front yard.”
I would love an insider’s tour of this city! Just looking at the images, it’s quite easy to imagine a wizard-for-hire making Chicago his own playground. What do you think? Any Chicago natives out there to add more insight? 

About Jackie

Jackie is a quirky mom, living in Ontario, Canada. She's a bookkeeper by day and a book lover by night. She also blogs at The Novel Nation and writes occasionally for Heroes and Heartbreakers.

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  • Estella July 25, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    The only part of Chicago I have seen is the airport.

  • Lisa Jo @ Once Upon A Chapter July 25, 2011 at 3:20 pm

    I've been to Chicago a few times. It is a gorgeous city! They have one of the most beautiful fountains I've ever seen. If you've seen the show Married with Children, it's featured in the shows opening credits.

    Definitely plenty of wonderful cites to see there!

    Lisa @ Once Upon A Chapter

  • James Garcia Jr July 25, 2011 at 7:07 pm

    Great pictures. Thanks for sharing. I'm a die-hard Cubs fan who keeps hearing how wonderful it is to visit the city. I live in a small town in California, but one of these days the family and I are going to make that trip. We recently accompanied our oldest child to NYC where he and his High School wind ensemble played Carnegie Hall. I loved every part of that trip, so I look forward to Chicago next.


  • Sheree July 26, 2011 at 12:00 am

    I've read about Chicago (Julie James' books for example) but I've never been there. When I was in college, one of my friends was from Chicago and we used to giggle at the way she pronounced "roof" and "roots".

    I always figured that Chicago was probably colder than NYC so not in the winter, thank you.

  • Angelina Rain July 26, 2011 at 8:21 am

    I've been living in Chicago and many of it's south suruberbs for around 17 years now. Chicago is very diverse so it really depends on what part of the city you go to. If you want the actual "city" experiance, I would recommend downtown Chicago (all the pictures you posted are from downtown). In downtown, you can walk down the street with a multi millionare on one side of you and a homeless person on the other side. In Chicago, you can experiance all walks of life.

    Most of the people who live in Downtown are either old money or people who managed to make it big. It's very overpriced.

    Then, on the outskirts of downtown you have many "parks" which are actually the immediate Chicago suburbs. They are very diverse, it's like walking into differend countries. There's China Town, which, like the name says, is an Asian town. There are towns where everything is in Spanish, or Polish, or Russian, ect. There are poverty striken towns where all the buildings are boarded up. There's gang violance all the time, and people get shot in broad daylight. The worst is when little kids get caught in the cross fires. I hear about that every night on the news. Tragic. I used to live in some of those neighborhoods but they get worse and worse and now I'm too afraid to even drive passed them.

    Then, about 20 miles north, or 40 miles south of the downtown area, you have the actual subburbs. Those are very diverse too but for the most part they are either middle class or upper middle class. Some neighborhoods are very rich and the houses are spectacular, some are just your typical suburban America.

    Then, about 200 miles south of downtown (now we're leaving Chicago but are still in IL) you have farm towns and farm land. This is where you will find some nature and greenery.

  • Jackie July 27, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    @Estella – Boo! I can say the same thing about Denver and Amsterdam 🙁

    @Lisa Jo- I totally know the fountain you're talking about! I had seen a pic of it but it wasn't a really good one, so I didn't add it in.

    @Jimmy – Carnegie Hall?! Fantastic! I think compared to some vacations, Chicago and NYC are easier to fit in (as opposed to a 3 week tour of Europe, etc.) I plan on going one day also.

    @Sheree – It's the darn "windy city" tag line that makes it sound cold, I think. I don't imagine it would be any worse than my winters in Southern Ontario, though.

    @Angelina – Thank you for the insiders look! There was a particular subdivision mentioned in Fool Moon (Harry Dresden #2), which I can't for the life of me remember it's name…Gold Coast? or something along those lines. It sounded like one of the more affluent neighbourhoods, for sure. It sounds like Chicago has the same elements of any big city. In and around Toronto, we have the same up & downsides.

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