Travel & Outdoor
Chicago magazine

Chicago magazine March 2017

Since 1970, readers have turned to Chicago magazine for expertise on Chicago’s dining, shopping, and entertainment scenes, as well as for award-winning reporting on the key people and issues in the city. Get your digital subscription to Chicago magazine today.

United States
Chicagoland Publishing Company
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12 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
on chicagomag.com

These New Transit Signs Could Save You Time and Money Chicago is served by 20 rail lines split among three public agencies—none of which, traditionally, have bothered to tell you about the others on their maps or signage. Fortunately, the Regional Transportation Authority is taking some small steps to fix this. The RTA has created maps and signs that show travelers all their transit options, regardless of the agency that provides them, and is placing them around Chicagoland. This is great news, because when people don’t know what their options are, they can’t use them. Someone going from Rogers Park to Logan Square using only the CTA, for example, could spend well over an hour taking the Red Line to the Brown Line to the Armitage bus—or could cut travel time almost in…

1 min.
city of hope

It isn’t hard to come up with reasons to be down on Chicago. Skyrocketing murder rates. Police misconduct. Political gridlock. Let’s not forget the interminable winters. And yet most of us who live here can’t imagine being anywhere else. The last time this magazine ran a list of reasons to love the city was in 2010—to celebrate Chicago’s 40th anniversary. We decided to revisit the theme because, despite the steady drumbeat of depressing news, we sense an even stronger undercurrent of pride and hope. (Exhibit A: The Women’s March on Chicago in January drew an estimated 250,000.) We put out a call for ideas, and pieces poured in from heavyweights ranging from comedians such as Hannibal Buress, Silicon Valley’s T.J. Miller, and Comedy Central’s Kyle Kinane to lauded writers such as Irvine Welsh…

2 min.
inside peek

BEHIND THE COVER Jim Bachor laid tiles in a Jefferson Park pothole for this month’s image—an act of public art that’s openly tolerated, if not entirely legal. “The Department of Streets and Sanitation drove by three times while we were shooting,” says design director Katherine Shady. “They didn’t stop once.” (See page 97 for more on Bachor.) ARTIFACT Senior writer Bryan Smith got his firstever shooting lesson from Cubs slugger Kyle Schwarber (page 84). “He gave me some sideeye when we got our target back,” says Smith. “My shots are the ones way off the bull’s-eye.” OUTTAKE Trimmed from T.J. Miller’s ode to Italian beef on page 76: “One time I was staying downtown, and I decided to walk to Portillo’s to get an Italian beef. And then I decided to walk to Al’s Italian…

4 min.
gilded plateau

No. 1 $11.7 million 11 E. Walton St., Gold Coast Trader Igor Chernomzav listed his 52nd-floor four-bedroom penthouse (with its own movie theater!) in June 2015 for $13.9 million. He cut the price by $1 million last spring and finally unloaded it (for around a million less than that) to an undisclosed buyer in July. COOLEST FEATURE Indoor pool with a double-sided aquarium In the postbust years, luxury home prices trended up, up, up. But last year, the market for $1 million–plus properties proved to be relatively ho-hum. (For homes that closed, at least. A Burling Street mansion listed for an astronomical $50 million in December.) In 2016, the number of single-family homes that sold for more than $1 million rose a modest 4.5 percent, according to Midwest Real Estate Data. (Compare that…

2 min.
ask amy about herself already

Even after moving home to Freeville, New York, in 2007 to care for your mother, you still commute to Chicago monthly to appear on NPR’sWait Wait … Don’t Tell Me!What do you do here besides that? I wrote a lot of [my memoir] in Chicago: Ironically, I had to leave my little house in the country to get some peace in the city. I have an apartment in Lincoln Park. My routine is to basically lead a quiet life of walking, jogging next to the lake, and lots of takeout meals from R.J. Grunts. What’s the hardest part of being aWait Waitpanelist? There’s the pressure of trying to win but also trying to be funny. The show was originally journalists who were funny, and now it’s standup comedians who read the…

1 min.
curators’ secrets

1 A pro “extraction team” is on retainer. Curators at the Field have been trapped behind the lines of a village revolt in the Andes, navigated war-wrought borders, and hired Congolese militias as protection details. Sometimes, writes Grande, “even the U.S. State Department is not enough.” 2 A former Field botany curator is a superstar in Peru. Michael Dillon, a.k.a. Dillon of the Andes, has dozens of plant species, a scientific journal, and a conservation institute named in his honor there. Once, in a bid to persuade Mexican ranchers to let him collect specimens on their land, he jumped into a rodeo ring and rode a bucking cow. He got a good trampling—and access. 3 The Field’s massive bird collection? Built from casualties of Chicago’s skyscrapers. Every year, thousands of migrating birds—exhausted…