For three weekends each October, wicked surgeons, rotting corpses, and malevolent clowns haunt the corridors of St. Thecla Parish’s basement. A team of designers, actors, and effects artists with more than 30 years of haunted-house experience designs each petrifying scene, with a scare level catered to guests aged 12 and older. Numerous exits let terrified visitors escape, while No Scare Days invite costumed kids aged 11 and younger to feast on candy and wander the lit house during the daytime, when it’s not full of frightening creatures or owls holding staring contests. Proceeds from Hair Razor Haunted Scenes help fund and sustain St. Thecla Parish.
The indoor music and art festival takes over the Chicago Urban Art Society for a full day with exhibits and interactive pieces that ensnare the senses with bursts of color and sound. More than 100 artists fill the marketplace stalls with their wares, showcasing works that include portraits and 3D canvases peering out through a sea of color. Nearby, craftspeople display beaded necklaces, seashell-laden earrings, and hand-painted animal figures for sale. As the crowds peruse works, live music and DJ tunes fill the room. Guests get their own chance to be creative too: patrons can create their own artwork or act as lookouts while Hugo Style paints live graffiti art.
At Chicago Firearm Training, chief instructors John Frycek and Jamie Tallerico combine their NRA training certifications with field experience as private investigators and personal-security specialists. The two assemble their instructional team from experienced law-enforcement officers, who receive ongoing training so they can pass on the most current armed defensive tactics to students. In addition to keeping their team's skills sharp, John and Jamie assign two or three instructors to each class. Coupled with enrollment limits, this approach helps ensure instructors can give individual attention and greet each student in their class by humming them a personalized theme song.
When Director Tony Youhanna and George Solomos founded Little Legends Soccer Academy in 2009, they found themselves filling a niche. At the time, the North Shore offered no quality soccer coaching for youngsters interested in the game. Their first session was a success, drawing thirty eager players, but it didn't prepare them for the popularity that was to come. Since that day, the academy has ballooned: more than 300 children ages 24 months to 8 years old are currently enrolled in its various programs.
Each clinic helps kids build soccer fundamentals such as foot skills, passing, and receiving in an environment that encourages fun and teamwork. Very young players—24 to 36 months—start off in the Born to Kick program, which couples soccer skills with mind-nurturing topics such as shapes, colors, and vocabulary. As children get older and their skills progress, they move into clinics aimed at more advanced techniques, eventually putting them to work in games. The academy's Space program—standing for speed, agility, core, and endurance—does away with the soccer ball altogether, focusing instead on exercises to improve footwork, speed, and balance.
A comprehensive guide to attractions and things to do.