Things To Do In Chicago

Pontoon-Boat Rental for 8 or 12 from Corporate Tailgate Boat Rental (Up to 64% Off). Three Options Available.

Corporate Tailgate and Boat Rentals

Goose Island

Pontoon boats cruise leisurely up and down the Chicago River on a waterfront tour; see Navy Pier fireworks; bring your own food and drinks

$300 $109

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Tributes to Nirvana, Beastie Boys, Weezer, Tool & More at The Cubby Bear on October 10–December 6 (Up to 46% Off)

Cubby Bear

Cubby Bear

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Rock out with tributes to Rage Against the Machine, Sublime, Pearl Jam, Beastie Boys, Tool, and more at this Wrigleyville hotspot

$9.95 $7

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Uncover the Secrets of the Human Body at an Autopsy Seminar

Autopsy Seminar

International Museum of Surgical Science

The founder of the Autopsy Center of Chicago fields questions about death and the body during a slideshow

$50

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Chicago Flower & Garden Show presented by Mariano's at Navy Pier for Two or Four (Up to 53% Off)

Chicago Flower & Garden Show presented by Mariano's

Near North Side

Held March 16–22, Chicago’s largest gardening expo features workshops, seminars, gourmet cooking demonstrations, and floral art exhibits

$38 $19

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Bartok's "Bluebeard's Castle," Presented by New Millennium Orchestra of Chicago on December 4 (Up to 56% Off)

Bartok's "Bluebeard's Castle"

Thalia Hall

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Bartok’s one-act opera comes to life with the help of famed bass Andrea Silvestrelli, a 58-piece ensemble, and the castle-like Thalia Hall

$25.80 $10

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The Sexiest Ugly Sweater Concert! with DJ Zebo at Red Ivy on Friday, December 19 (Up to 55% Off)

The Sexiest Ugly Sweater Concert!

Red Ivy

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Dance to DJ sets at a celebration of “ugly” sweaters

$22.09 $10

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Four-Hour Inside Chicago Grand Tour by Bus for Two or Four from American Sightseeing Chicago (Up to 50% Off)

American Sightseeing Chicago

Palmer House Hilton, Ground Floor Gift Shop

A bus ferries visitors to the North and South Sides, showing them major parks, the Museum Campus, and the sights along Lake Shore Drive

$45 $25

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I Rock the Mic with MC Lyte and Doug E. Fresh at Arie Crown Theater on Sunday, December 7 (Up to 42% Off)

Arie Crown Theater

Arie Crown Theater

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An all-star cast, including MC Lyte, Doug E. Fresh, Rakim, and Big Daddy Kane, rocks the mic at this gathering of old-school rappers

$69.21 $40

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Full Kits and Build-Your-Own Starter Kits or Juices at Cloud Vapor Lounge (Up to 45% Off)

Cloud Vapor Lounge

Chicago

Wide selection of vaping accessories, including custom kits and a variety of different juices

$40 $22

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Foo Fighters at Wrigley View Rooftop on Saturday, August 29, at 5:30 p.m. (Up to 30% Off)

Foo Fighters

Wrigley View Rooftop

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Dave Grohl and co. tear into epic catalogue, from “Best of You” and “Everlong” to the new album “Sonic Highways”; food & drink included

$312.34 $220

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$35 for a Ticket to The Dinner Party with Celebs and host Elysabeth Alfano on Monday, Dec. 1 ($49 Value)

The Dinner Party

West Loop

Join host Elysabeth Alfano for dinner and conversation with a best-selling author, a theater critic, an actor, and a famous chef

$49 $35

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"You Had Me at En Vogue" for Two at The Second City on November 1–December 6 (Up to 42% Off)

"You Had Me at En Vogue"

Donny's Skybox Theatre

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Cast of Urban Twist skewers pop culture and stereotypes in their latest revue

$26 $15

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Craft a Custom Cup, Bowl, or Paperweight with a Glassblower

Hands-On Glass-Blowing Class

Chicago Hot Glass

Working one-on-one with a professional glassblower, you’ll shape molten glass into a colorful cup, bowl, or paperweight

$65

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$179 for a Boating Handling and Safety Class from Freedom Boat Club ($325 Value)

Freedom Boat Club

Uptown

This seven-hour class teaches you all the ropes to feel confident piloting a vessel on the open water

$325 $179

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Admission for 2 or 4, or One- or Two-Year Family Membership to Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum (Up to 50% Off)

Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

Lincoln Park

Nature museum hosts living and educational exhibits on the natural world including a butterfly haven and a native prairie.

$18 $11

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$17 for One Ticket to the MatzoBall Singles Mixer on December 24 at 9 p.m. ($30 Value)

MatzoBall

The MID

Jewish singles event has helped people meet and party together for the past 30 years

$30 $17

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Activity Ticket for One to the 14th Annual PNC Bank Winter WonderFest at Navy Pier (Up to 42% Off)

14th Annual PNC Bank Winter WonderFest at Navy Pier

Near North Side

Chicago’s indoor winter playground with ice-skating rink, ferris wheel, hang glider, spinning cocoa cups, carousel, and playland for kids

$19 $11

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Cirque Dreams "Holidaze" at The Chicago Theatre on December 17 or 18 at 7:30 p.m.

Cirque Dreams Holidaze

The Chicago Theatre

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Colorfully costumed acrobats, strongmen, and daredevils perform awe-inspiring physical feats as a live band plays holiday songs

$61.02 $46

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$10 for Two to Visit Randolph Street Market on November 22–23 or December 13–14 (Up to $20 Value)

Randolph Street Market

Plumbers Hall

90 top vintage, indie designers offer costume and estate jewelry, clothing, and hand-crafted goods on two levels and an indoor balcony

$10 $5

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Historic spacecraft, fragments of far away worlds, and maps of the galaxy make outer space seem completely within reach. That's the magic of the Adler Planetarium. From the moment visitors pass through the Clark Family Welcome Gallery?a portal of aluminum tubing, fabric, and video projections?they embark on a journey through space, time, and imagination.

  • Eye Catcher: Earth's neighbors and one massive yellow Sun hang overhead in Our Solar System, which also includes a fragment of a meteorite and a replica of the Mars rover. The Adler is the only place where visitors can touch a piece of the Moon, Mars, and three different asteroids under one roof.
  • Permanent Mainstay: The Historic Atwood Sphere, Chicago's oldest planetarium, where guests can step under a steel dome to view the night sky as it appeared in 1913 thanks to 692 drilled holes.
  • Hands-On Experiments: In The Universe: A Walk Through Space and Time, you can send yourself digital postcards from across the Universe; it'll only take four hours for one to arrive from Neptune, but be prepared to wait 2.5 million years for one to arrive from the Andromeda galaxy.
  • Hidden Gem: The Space Visualization Lab introduces guests to cutting-edge research that astronomers discuss with visitors one-on-one to convey the vastness of space or the size of the castle they want to build on the Moon.
  • Don't Miss: The live planetarium show, Destination Solar System, blends a sci-fi plot with real science as it journeys to Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn's moon Titan.
  • Special Programs: Every third Thursday of the month, Adler After Dark lets amateur astronomers 21 and older spend the evening gazing at the stars with cocktails in hand.

Groupon Guide

Stargazing Tips from an Adler Astronomer

Get the most out of your stargazing gear with these tips.
The Adler?s New Show Takes You on a (Practically) Real Tour of the Solar System

How an Adler Planetarium scientist and "Lalaloopsy" TV writer propelled their audience across the solar system.
1300 S Lake Shore Dr.
Chicago,
IL
US

Before moving to Chicago, Dan Smith and Steve McDonagh began their culinary careers in New York as a way to support themselves while they looked for work as actors. It wasn’t their acting that brought the duo to stardom, however. Against odds of 10,000 to 1, they sent a tape into the Food Network and, to their surprise, became the first-ever winners of the Next Food Network Star contest, landing their own show on the cable channel. That success enabled them to grow their catering business’s small café into a full-fledged restaurant serving up brunch, lunch, and dinner.

"Our focus is on what we love, which is mid-century food and the American culture of dining, and that kind of collective memory we have . . . taking those recipes and updating them for a modern palate," Steve says. For example, they top sweet potatoes with black-thyme-pepper marshmallows and create corn dogs with rabbit sausage in red-velvet butter. Steve says that they love creating conversation at their tables, especially as guests reminisce about memories evoked by dishes such as tuna noodle casserole and their Hearty mac ‘n’ cheese. "For Dan and I, that's a major part of the dining experience," he says. "If we can get their heads moving as well as their mouths, we feel pretty successful." Their efforts have paid off. "The duo is making magic by keeping it simple," said Phil Vettel in a review on WGN. "There's at least one wow ingredient on every plate. A simple burger is brightened with triple-cream cambozola cheese, sugar-cured bacon, and garlic aioli. Bacon-wrapped shrimp arrives on a pile of wonderful white cheddar grits . . . It's fun and delicious."

Dan heads the kitchen, while Steve forges many of the signature cocktails, aiming to discourage the intimidation that often surrounds craft cocktails. He and Dan even authored a book whose 200+ drink recipes include every cocktail made at Hearty, proving that everyone can make the drinks at home. Steve's even been known to chat up tables in hopes of introducing them to a new drink. "It's amazing, the amount of people who don't think they drink gin—so I have to force them," Steve says. "Once you have a gin that is different than that gin that you drank in the 1980s that was so harsh and juniper-heavy, once you're having one of these new American gins along with just simple fresh citrus and the other spirits… you understand what the fuss is about." He's also curated an exclusively American wine list with bottles from unexpected sources—including Dr. Frank's Salmon Run rkatsiteli from the Finger Lakes in New York, which he calls "floral and highly acidic . . . Everybody loves it."

3819 N Broadway St
Chicago,
IL
US

After attending boot camps for a while, Maizah's motivation fizzled and she dropped the course. But refusing to accept defeat? even if it weren't his own?The Boot Camp Guy's cofounder, Chris Brown, gave her a call and made a case. He showed her some before-and-after shots of people she'd met at the sessions before she left?and was astounded by their transformations.

"That could have been me," she kept thinking. So she headed back to class determined that this time, it would be. Months later, she'd gone from a size 16/18 down to a size 12 with extra energy to boot.

As a former Marine with 14 years of professional fitness experience and a passion for helping people reach their goals, Chris knows that boot camp isn't about the stereotypical screaming drill sergeants depicted on TV. Instead, he and his trainers employ a realistic, no-scales and no-diets philosophy and focus on supplying their students with the motivation they need. They identify each student's fitness level within moments and calibrate their workouts accordingly, pitching the signature boot-camp classes at beginner, intermediate, and expert levels. This approach seeks to get students to their own desired level of "skinny", whether that's a size two, size 14, or any other goal. The trainers further outfit their boot-camp base model with nine different tracks?with one designed to shed weight?and total-body sessions up the ante with weights, resistance bands, and mat exercises to strengthen entire physiques rather than honing in on left pinkies. They also encourage students to eat the food they enjoy, and to be mindful of which nutrients their body needs to address deficiencies and restore balance.

The fitness menu unfurls a feast of other group classes. Cycle circuits combine intensive spinning with ab work on the turf and toning dumbbell drills. Cardio-kickboxing classes blend aerobics, boxing, and martial arts. All told, they offer more than 100 classes each month from their well-stocked studio, which the staff stocks with free weights, strength-training machines, exercise balls, and resistance bands, as well as a recently added indoor obstacle course.

3037 West 111th Street
Chicago,
IL
US

A nonprofit theater helmed by passionate cinephiles, Facets Cinematheque instills a love of film in its youngest moviegoers through its groundbreaking children's programs. Since establishing their first children's film exhibition series in 1975, the theater's stewards have branched out into education and outreach, introducing students to positive films and the inspiring stories behind them through channels including family film events, in-school screenings, and the Facets Kids Film Camp. They also oversee the Chicago International Children’s Film Festival, which presents hundreds of films from around the globe during its annual autumn run. Though the festival caters to its smallest attendees, its scope is impressively large; welcoming over 20,000 attendees each year, the festival often offers the first screenings of award-winning fare, such as recent Academy Award winner The Fantastic Flying Books Of Mr. Morris Lessmore.

In addition to their children's programming, the theater also lights up its silver screen with indie films, award winners, foreign flicks, and documentaries. Celluloid-caretakers curate a collection of reels that seldom see screenings elsewhere in Chicago, frequently enjoying their city debut within the intimate 125-seat theater. Occasionally, production-team members or film experts join audiences immediately following the show for Q&A sessions—known as film dialogues—taking questions, exploring themes, and providing tips for removing stubborn popcorn kernels from teeth. Upcoming films can be found on Facets’ website.

Eyeballs absorb moving pictures thanks to the dual capabilities of Facets’ projection system, which handles digital and 35 mm films with equal aplomb. While the ephemeral stories fill brains with new ideas, soda and popcorn—acquirable at the old-fashioned concession stand—fill mouths with flavors that have defined every classic moviegoing experience since Orson Welles first invented the snack.

1517 West Fullerton Avenue
Chicago,
IL
US

Beginners and seasoned yogis alike are welcome at 105F - Bikram Yoga Chicago. Here, instructors lead classes that are designed to lure students to their limits, providing a demanding physical challenge for all skill and fitness levels. Each of the three studio locations contains a practice room that is heated to 105 degrees with 40%?45% humidity, creating a sweat-inducing, tropical setting that aids practicers by loosening their muscles as they sink into each stretch.

The 90-minute classes all follow the same sequence: two breathing exercises and 26 standing and seated asanas, which use deep twists and bends to methodically work organ systems and muscle groups throughout the entire body. Instructors slowly guide students into poses and ensure that they can perform each asana at a level that safely challenges their limits. Continued practice can help yogis hone their strength and endurance while also learning to maintain a greater sense of focus and mind-body awareness, even in the face of physical distractions like another student's Sudoku puzzle back tattoo.


Groupon Guide to Chicago

Yes, Yoga Is a Sport
And Gianna Purcell is the reigning champion. Follow her journey to the top from her very first class at 105F in Chicago.


My Chicago by Giuliana Rancic

E! News anchor and Fashion Police host Giuliana Rancic was born in Italy but she has strong ties to Chicago?namely, her husband Bill, the Trump-approved entrepreneur and restaurateur behind RPM Italian. In the My Chicago by Giuliana Rancic collection, the star of Giuliana & Bill gives the scoop on her favorite local spots to get glammed up, be entertained in style, and even shop for Bill.

Shop the Collection


47 W Polk St
Chicago,
IL
US

Chicago might be far from any ocean, but that obstacle didn't stop it from pioneering the first permanent inland saltwater aquarium in the country. Thanks to civic leader John G. Shedd’s drive and contribution of $3 million paid for nearly a million gallons of seawater transported by rail from Florida’s coast, by 1930 the city hosted exhibits large enough to accommodate a wide variety of marine species–sea mammals as well as fish.

Today, Shedd’s dream continues to thrive with the aquarium’s scores of undersea creatures—from sharks and dolphins to vibrant sea cucumbers—showcased in educational, eye-catching exhibits. The permanent collection spirits visitors from the Great Lakes to the Amazon River to the waters of the Arctic Circle. The resident critters often share their turf with temporary guests such as sea jellies and stingrays, who fill dramatic special exhibits.

The most exciting animal encounters, however, may come via the year-round aquatic show. Trainers demonstrate the natural behaviors of sea lions, dolphins, and even beluga whales. They have some four-legged company, too: a trio of rescue dogs often appear alongside their finned adoptive family, demonstrating how learning through positive reinforcement transcends boundaries between species.

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Five Reasons to Visit (or Revisit) the Shedd Aquarium's Jellies Exhibit

Here’s why these lovable blobs are worth a first, second, or even fifth visit.
1200 South Lake Shore Drive
Chicago,
IL
US

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