Inside Out's exterior designers upgrade properties' peripheries with customized landscape architecture. During a complimentary consultation, clients meet with open-air artisans to evaluate wants, needs, and prophetic dreams such as water features (starting at $4,000), gas-fed cultured-stone outdoor kitchen islands with granite tops and 24-inch grills ($7,500), or an outdoor kitchen ($9,000+). Based on this information, the firm's consultant will devise a master plan to create sunlit spaces that boast similar comfort and style to their indoor counterparts.
At Back to Bed's South Loop location, manager Kip Wilkinson puts customers at ease with a friendly attitude, helping them find a bed that fits their individual needs and budget. The experienced delivery staff also sets up new beds and removes old ones, with a variety of delivery options available. At the show room, Tempur-Pedic, Stearns & Foster, and Simmons Beautyrest mattresses await rigorous testing, and the sleep-savvy employees help shoppers determine if they're more suited to a firm or soft mattress or to creamy or chunky peanut butter. Aside from a wide selection of mattress types and brands, Back to Bed also offers accessories such as ergonomic memory foam pillows.
Green Garden Center, now in business for more than 45 years, helps patrons beautify their home landscapes with flowers, trees, shrubs, and outdoor accessories under the guidance of second-generation owners Dick and Pat Ooykaas. Alongside a team of experienced green-thumbed staffers, they tend to greenhouses brimming with verdant plant life that is all locally grown. Green Glen also delivers and installs plant materials, performs home consultations, and creates custom planters for accenting porches or for sending home with extraterrestrial visitors.
Turk Furniture has a 125-year-long tradition of beautifying homes with furniture from brand names such as Palliser, Broyhill, and Flexsteel. At the start of each showroom visit, design experts render a quick sketch of clients' rooms, surveying existing furnishings while ignoring unmentionable elephants. Using this information, clients can redecorate rooms with a comfy recliner, update living areas with new entertainment consoles, and dress naked walls in leaning bookcases.
Brothers Brian and Mike are the fifth generation of their family to own and oversee operations at Meade Baltz, which has been transforming the hues of interiors and exteriors since 1876. Paint cans from Benjamin Moore line shelves, and friendly color experts stand ready to advise or deftly mix colors to match palette strips or new pets. Regal First Coat Primer ($35.49/gal.) rolls over surfaces to prepare for Aura Interior ($63.99) or Benjamin Moore Interior Flat ($38.99) paints. Benjamin Moore Eggshell Interior paint gives walls that ovoid touch without eating scrambled eggs for a month to acquire glue-ready shells ($41.95/gal.). For outer façades, layers of ArborCoat Premium Exterior Stain polish dwellings’ outer armor with weather-ready hues and give a deck the confidence to finally ask out the tree its always had a crush on ($44.99).
The Joliet Park District sprawls across more than 1,000 acres, engaging visitors with everything from sports to nature. Guests can wander through the foliaged paths of the Pilcher Park Nature Center and the organic community garden, or treat their senses to the floral colors and aromas that fill the bird-haven greenhouse. The 10,000-seat Joliet Memorial Stadium hosts high-school and college sporting events, while a dozen athletic fields fill with recreational players hitting baseballs, catching softballs, and spiking soccer balls when the referee isn't looking. During the summer, inner tubes transport patrons down Joliet Splash Station's high-speed water slides and 865-foot lazy river, and the glittery strands of Fourth of July fireworks color the skies above the stadium.