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.
Diners at New Line Tavern take their meals beneath framed vintage photos of trains and railroad signs as a nod to the eatery’s location within the Powerhouse building, which originally powered the Chicago and Milwaukee railways. The chefs' menu of comfort food is anything but dated and features modern gastropub staples such as burgers, sandwiches, and buffalo wings, “while a long lineup of appetizers (mini-crab cakes, queso fundido, asiago-dusted fries with garlic dipping sauce) beckons for happy hour gatherings,” as mentioned by Metromix. Bartenders serve up an array of international brews and spirits at the fully stocked bar, and out on the patio, diners settle beneath red-umbrella-covered tables that offer shade from the sun and shelter from clouds shooting spit balls.
Ancient Greece formed the foundation for western civilization, and its influence can still be felt to this day. Open since 1983, the National Hellenic Museum celebrates this influence by examining the American experience through the lens of Greek culture, both from ancient times and today.
The Building: In 2011, the museum moved to its current digs, a gleaming limestone 40,000-square-foot structure. Greek-American and Chicagoan Demetrios Stavrianos, architect with RTKL Associates, designed it with inspiration from Greek monastaries and classic architecture
Permanent Mainstay: The Story of Greek Independence, which depicts the the 12 year battle told through artwork, writing, and artifacts, including a book of lithographs printed in 1828
Past Exhibits: The Spirit of the Marathon: From Pheidippides to Today, which traced the history of the marathon, from Pheidippides famed run announcing Greece's victory over the Persians to Chicago's famous annual event
New Exhibits: The Greek Monsters opens on September 25 and explores vivid ancient Greek mythology through various installations, sculptures, graffiti, and audio-visual technology. Each neo-black-style figure is accompanied by an original poem on the design philosophy or practice the exhibit stands for.
Pro Tip: On Sunday afternoons, for just one hour, docents lead free tours of the museum
Special Programs: Those wanting to delve deeper can take Greek language and culture classes hosted by the museum
The Neighborhood: The museum is located in Greektown, just steps away from the city's most authentic Greek eateries
From the seascapes of Pebble Beach Golf Links to the narrow fairways of Pinehurst No. 2, golfers can play some of the world's most famous courses in City Tee Time's golf simulator. The courses come to life on the 12-foot screen that golfers pelt with real golf balls launched by real clubs (City Tee time rents out clubs for no additional charge). During rounds, golfers can adjust shots and game-management strategies by referring to a system of 688 independent sensors that records the trajectory of each shot. Golfers can also adjust a number of variables before each round, such as electing to play in calm, breezy, or windy conditions and on hard, soft, or lava greens.
City Tee Time also boasts a short-game training area and digital practice modules, which let golfers scrutinize their swings and vestigial tails with video-replay technology. While practicing their stroke, guests can keep track of live sporting events on City Tee Time's HD TVs or stay abreast of work responsibilities with the facility's complimentary WiFi.
Flashing lights and the glimmer of disco balls shoot across The MID's two-story interior as upwards of 800 people unleash inhibitions to the house beats of resident DJ's Zebo, Nathan Scott, and Gus Karas. Across the dancefloor, neon lights frame each of the Meatpacking District hot spot's three full bars as waiters shuttle drinks to club-goers nestled up to table and booths. High-octane beats reverberate off the exposed brick walls and dark baroque wall patterns, and a VIP room with its own bar, along with stunning views of the Chicago skyline add to the upscale nightclub's trendy atmosphere. When not hosting fashion shows and holiday events, the MID puts on curates an impressive roster of shows, including appearances by Talib Kweli and DJ Shadow.
As December 21, 2012, approaches, many Americans eagerly await the moment when Hades will emerge from the Underworld to recklessly devour raw egg. Until then, experience man-made terror with today's Groupon: $10 gets you a ticket to Chronicles of the Cursed: Hades Emerges, a massive, nightmarish haunted house adventure ($20 value). Be the first to witness the gory horror as it ascends from the depths to torture torture-hungry souls with an opening weekend ticket; good from 7 p.m.–10 p.m. for Friday, October 9; Saturday, October 10; or Sunday, October 11. Dare your friends to witness the spine-tingling goblins and humiliate your weak-bladdered enemies. Follow @Groupon_Says on Twitter.