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Sound Excursions describes their carefully curated group experiences as "field trips for adults." It's easy to see why: every outing takes groups to a new realm of Washington, whether it's the frothy shores of Puget Sound, inland forests and mountains, or tables at Seattle's thriving restaurants. The events held at these diverse locations range from culinary workshops on topics such as sushi-making and moonshine-tasting, to adventurous excursions with whitewater rafting or kayaking, to laid-back themed party cruises. For many outings, luxury transportation is provided.

450 West Jackson Boulevard
Chicago,
IL
US

  • Founded: 1954
  • Home: Civic Opera House, a masterpiece of art deco and art nouveau design opened in 1929
  • Mission: to engage audiences with classic operas, lesser-known gems, and new works
  • Famous performers: Pavarotti, Maria Callas, dancer Rudolf Nureyev, Pl?cido Domingo, Marilyn Horne, Frederica von Stade, and Ren?e Fleming have all graced the stage

20 N Wacker Dr.
Chicago,
IL
US

Ranked one of Five Podcasts that Will Change the Way You Think by Forbes Magazine, Intelligence Squared Debates has opened the floor on timely, politically-charged issues during more than 60 interactive Oxford-style debates—typically broadcast live from New York on more than 220 NPR stations, on PBS, and on Wall Street Journal's WSJLIve. In past debates, Arianna Huffington and P.J. O'Rourke have dueled over whether the two-party political system makes it impossible to govern. Malcolm Gladwell has advocated banning college football amid rebuttals from sports broadcaster Tim Green.

Whether the topic is Palestine's UN admission as a full member state, the pros and cons of religion, or the Internet's effect on our ability to stay open-minded, audience members get to question luminaries who have included Paul Krugman, Alan Dershowitz, and Karl Rove and throw tomatoes at them when they're deemed out of order. Each attendee is also afforded the final vote––for, against, or undecided––to crown the debate's winner.

170 N Dearborn St.
Chicago,
Illinois
US

At this month's multimedia "Groupon Presents" showcase, the Chicago Artists' Coalition's gleaming white rafters rumble to the galvanizing beats of Dawn Golden and Rosy Cross while mesmerizing artwork by Jason Brammer fuses with moves from an improvised dance trio. The aural brainchild of 24-year-old producer Dexter Tortoriello, Dawn Golden and Rosy Cross possesses a melancholy texture that pulses with danceable energy. On his latest EP, Blow, Tortoriello interweaves ethereal vocals and live instrumentation with the grind of old drum machines and broken synthesizers, adding an element of anachronism to modern style like a robot wearing a monocle. The performance will be complemented by a video of beautifully synchronized visuals, courtesy of artist Alan Jensen. Mixed-media canvases by Brammer further feed into the evening's connection of old and new, juxtaposing future worlds with salvaged hardware and antique fixtures from a time long forgotten. An interpretive dance trio led by improvisational artist JulieAnn Graham rounds out the jubilee with graceful movement and rousing choreography. Throughout the night, guests can venture to Aftermath, the current art exhibition featuring six Bolt residents' interpretations of life following a catastrophic event, or visit the open bar to fill their glasses or chain-mail gloves with bubbly pours of Blue Moon and Peroni provided by Miller/Coors and champagne provided by Wirtz Beverage. Valet parking is available for $10.

217 N Carpenter St
Chicago,
IL
US

Sound Excursions describes their carefully curated group experiences as "field trips for adults." It's easy to see why: every outing takes groups to a new realm of Washington, whether it's the frothy shores of Puget Sound, inland forests and mountains, or tables at Seattle's thriving restaurants. The events held at these diverse locations range from culinary workshops on topics such as sushi-making and moonshine-tasting, to adventurous excursions with whitewater rafting or kayaking, to laid-back themed party cruises. For many outings, luxury transportation is provided.

116 Hubbard St.
Chicago,
IL
US

Hailed as America's Company of Firsts, the world-renowned Joffrey Ballet has been blazing an artistic trail through media stereotypes since 1956 to redefine the global view of ballet. Through its maiden voyages as the first dance company to perform at the White House and on television, appear on the cover of Time, and commission a rock 'n' roll ballet, the Joffrey's artistically dynamic works have inspired a broad audience and a major motion picture. Its troupe of classically trained, world-class dancers oozes grace as they execute a diverse repertoire of classical masterpieces and cutting-edge performances. The company's annual Nutcracker performances have garnered global acclaim, and it attracts a wide audience in Chicago and around the world during national and international tours.

The Joffrey Ballet also bolsters the Windy City's arts education and dance training through the Joffrey Academy of Dance and community-engagement programs. The Chicago Philharmonic serves as the Joffrey’s official orchestra, bringing its diverse and innovative musical talent to the company's performances.

8 E Randolph St
Chicago,
IL
US

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