Nightlife in Back of the Yards

Select Local Merchants

A quintessential Chicago bar, Schaller’s Pump boasts a storied history that’s built on a foundation of baseball and politics. The tavern is a mainstay of Bridgeport in every sense of the word. It’s Chicago’s oldest continually running bar (since 1881) and over the years it has served as a shot-and-beer hangout for blue-collar workers, a pre-game dining spot for White Sox fans, and a hangout for the deal-making politicos that work across the street at the 11th Ward Democrats. Visitors walking up to the tavern should enter through the side door next to the parking lot; the large, arched-wooden door in the front of the bar remains shut at all times to ward off door-to-door encyclopedia salesmen. Once inside, visitors may not be blown away by the unassuming décor, but they’ll soon warm up to the cheap beer, singing old-timers, and menu of hearty eats such as butt steak and corned beef hash. However, the real draw is the chance to hear a good story. Owner Jake Schaller has lived upstairs for 35 years, and can talk anyone’s ear off with tales of illegal booze-running and Chicago big-shot sightings. For example, The South Side Brewing Co. operated next door during the Prohibition, under the guise of making non-alcoholic beer. Little did the authorities know that barrels of booze constantly rolled through underground tunnels connected to Shaller’s Pump. Future mayor (da mare, in Chicagoese) Richard Daley spent his 21st birthday here, and White Sox owner Bill Veeck used to stop in regularly for a cold brew. One time, Mr. Veeck took a $20 bill, covered one side with butter, put a silver dollar on the other side, and threw it (true it, in Chicagoese) at the ceiling. The bill supposedly stayed there for 20 years. It’s the type of longevity that makes this place so charming.

3714 South Halsted Street
Chicago,
IL
US

Pull up a black vinyl barstool at the century-old mahogany Brunswick-Balke-Collender bar at Shinnick’s Pub, and the bartenders might tell you some spectacular stories. They might tell you how the pub was a rollicking speakeasy during Prohibition. They might list all of the Chicago politicians who argued over bottles of frosty beers in the back room. Or they might regale you with tales of the nine Shinnick siblings, who grew up sweeping floors, scrubbing glasses, and uncapping beer bottles alongside their parents before taking over the bar themselves. They could even tell you the tale of the night the White Sox won the World Series, when the pub erupted in popping champagne bottles, deafening cheers, and waving brooms that symbolized the Sox "sweeping" non-sports news off the front page. Of course, it's always possible they'll just shoot you a friendly smile as they hand you a bottle of beer, leaving you to gaze at the glimmering flat screens, saunter on over to the jukebox, or mingle with the regulars—many of whom have frequented the bar for years, as their fathers and grandfathers had before them.

3758 South Union Avenue
Chicago,
IL
US

Surround Sound of Fashion dazzles guests with an evening of new styles, fresh-faced models, and ear-pleasing performances from R & B stars Tyrese and Elle Varner, all helping fund local charities. Before the swanky festivities begin, Groupon customers can exercise VIP clout to attend a preshow reception party, where light refreshments and drinks presage a main course of delectable fashion. Throughout the night, aspiring models saunter the catwalk festooned in threads from both nationally known designers and up-and-coming couturiers. The catwalkers will compete periodically for prizes including extravagant trips, professional photo shoots, and a ride on a giant balloon during upcoming holiday parades.

1029 West 35th Street
Chicago,
IL
US

Located within the Bridgeport Art Center, Wet Paint Chicago offers instructional art classes in a social setting. In the evenings, BYOB art classes invite adults to congregate, paint, sip on beverages, and mingle as they equip themselves with provided brushes, aprons, and materials. Meanwhile, afternoon classes invite students of all ages to paint in family-friendly sessions.

1200 W 35th St.
Chicago,
IL
US

514 West Pershing Road
Chicago,
IL
US

Since opening in 1984, Buffalo Wings and Rings' hot wings have delighted diners in the form of meaty traditional wings, boneless hand-breaded wings, or lengthened tenders. Wings in 10 different flavors and six levels of heat populate the menu alongside burgers, desserts, and salads.

3434 South Halsted Street
Chicago,
IL
US

Groupon Guide