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Make the Most of Memorial Day Weekend in Chicago

ChicagoLakeCondos - Jean Ward - Memorial DaySunny skies, green grass, and finally no need for your North Face puffy jacket on this upcoming national holiday and 3-day weekend.  So what’s a Chicagoan to do?  Think summer and step outdoors.  You could always dust off your grill, ice up the cooler, and hang out in the yard or on the patio or park with your friends and family.  Or you could check out some of these celebration ideas:

Opening Weekend for Chicago Beaches

Hit the lakefront starting Friday May 23rd, when lifeguards start patrolling the swim waters for the Summer Beach season at 11am.  Paddleboard, jet ski, or kayak from various beaches, including Montrose Harbor and 31st Street Harbor, play volleyball or practice yoga at Osterman or North Avenue Beach, and don’t forget my favorite hidden gem in Streeterville, Ohio Street Beach, where you can open water swim along the wall and luxuriate in the hot sand all in one place!

Memorial Day Parade

Attend one of the nation’s largest Memorial Day Parades downtown on Saturday, May 24th.  The annual Wreath Laying Ceremony at Daley Center to give special recognition to our nation’s fallen heroes and their survivors kicks starts at 11am and the parade kicks off at noon on State Street, from Lake to Van Buren.  Lt. Col. Tammy Duckworth, Congresswoman for our great state’s 8th District, will serve as the parade’s Grand Marshal.

Bike the Drive

On Sunday, May 25th, join thousands of bikers on Lake Shore Drive to take in 30 round-trip scenic miles to support the Active Transportation Alliance, which focuses on making biking, walking, and public transportation easier and safer.  When else is LSD closed from Bryn Mawr Avenue to 57th Street and you’ve got the keys to the city via your bicycle?  This 5 hour Bike the Drive event offers 5 different checkpoints by which to start your trek and take in the gorgeous lakefront view!  Bike as little or as long as you like. 

Indy 500

It’s roadtrip time.  Jump in your car, take the Amtrak, or climb aboard the double-decker MegaBus to visit the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing,” at the Indy 500 Mile Race in Speedway, Indiana on Sunday, May 25th.  Indianapolis is just under 200 miles from Chicago and will sure to delight you with a slice of life you have yet to experience.  Whether an avid race fan, an all-around sports appreciator, or simply a people watcher who likes to have a good time, the events in the days leading up to the IndyCar race around the 2.5 mile oval racetrack, will not disappoint.  Known as the world’s largest spectator sporting facility, the Indianapolis 500 Motor Speedway offers vintage racecar rides around the track, driver autograph sessions, and starpower such as Jason Aldean, Martina McBride, Jim Nabors and David Letterman.

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