June 7th, 2012 § § permalink
It is somehow always the case that one can have time or money but never both at the same time. So now that you do not have to read 1000 pages every week what are you going to do in Chicago that doesn’t cost much money? Well the lakefront, the parks and biking are all great options, but below are a few more you might have missed.
Museum free days
Most of the museums in Chicago have free or discounted days or offer student discounts
You can still use your Artspass, check the link for the discounts and partner institutions.
The Museum of Science and Industry is free for Illinois residents on June 7, 8, 11.
Field Museum check back here for discount days. They list them throughout the summer.
Adler Planetarium has discount days on June 7th and 8th perfect if your family is arriving early for convocation.
The Shedd Aquarium has Illinois resident discount days on June 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22. If you bank with Bank of America you get discounts on July 7-8 and Aug. 4-5 by showing your bank card.
The Museum of Contemporary Art is $7 with your Student ID.
While you are in that neighborhood you could visit the City Gallery at the Water Tower which is always free.
The Chicago Cultural Center has free exhibits, concerts and gallery talks all year round.
Students get into the Art Institute of Chicago for $12 any day and the first and second Wednesday of every month are free for Illinois residents.
On Navy Pier there is actually a free Stained Glass Museum which has great works and is not as populated as the rest of the pier. You could stay for the free fireworks if you are braving a day on the tourist-y pier.
Also did you know that if you have a Chicago Public Library card you can check out museum passes from any branch? Just make sure you get to the library early. The passes go quickly. The library also has lectures, readings and performances so check their calendar.
Outdoor events after the jump . . .
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August 25th, 2011 § § permalink
So it seemed like it was time to update the blog with a new batch of free or cheap ways to entertain yourself as a graduate student. Courses haven’t started so there is no excuse for not trying out a few of these options before you are drowning in reading.
First for incoming students it is great to know that your University of Chicago ID serves as your arts pass to get you in free or discounted to many area museums and theaters.
Ceiling at the Chicago Cultural Center
Festivals and Lectures
There will be many fantastic lectures on campus. However, the Chicago Humanities Festival hosts events all over the city in October and November. Most of them free or very cheap for students there is no excuse not to go see Steven Sondheim, Laurie Anderson or Jonathan Franzen speak.
Many Chicago street festivals are still happening in September and October.
Check out the Renegade Craft Fair September 10-11, Oktoberfest, September 23-24 or the Hyde Park Jazz Festival, September 24-25. A full list is here. Don’t miss free concerts in Millenium Park or Grant Park.
Discounted theater tickets are available the week of performances at hottix It is always worth asking for a student rate or checking your arts pass discount at most theaters.
Be sure to check out my guide to Chicago theaters here. There are over 200 small theaters in Chicago covering ever style, taste and price range, many small companies still have industry nights, or pay-what-you-can nights.
More free things after the jump . . .
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February 15th, 2010 § § permalink
The Shedd, Chicago’s funtimes Aquarium, is waiving general admission fees this week, and running discounts on special exhibit packages as well. Tucked away behind the Field Museum, the Shedd offers Chicagoans a chance to stare down sea creatures in a charmingly dry environment. Wave at a Wattled Jacana. Moon over a Moon Jelly. Make eyes at a Mangrove Whiptail Ray. Ogle a Goliath Bird-eating Tarantula (perhaps not the most sea creaturely feature, but really, I could pass up the chance to plug this guy? I mean, the kid eats Goliath Birds [correction: there are no such things as Goliath Birds, unfortunately. It turns out the Goliath Bird-eating Tarantula is huge, like Goliath, and also eats birds. Again, he does not eat Goliath Birds, that might have been too awesome anyway] – that’s gotta be incredible, right?). Become besotted over a Bonnethead Shark. All for little to no money, all this week at the Shedd.