Category Archives: Chicago info

9 Winter Life Hacks

Guys,

Winter is here. Ned Stark warned us and now that it has arrived, we must face the cold, cold truth.

Although the Chicago winter is tough, it doesn’t have to be entirely horrible. Below I have compiled Maph Central’s V.I.I. (Very Important Items) for the winter as well as some more general tips for the cold weather. Chicagoans, feel free to post additional advice in  the comments!

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We will all become The Winter Soldier

Very Important Items:

Sarah: Scarves! “In Chicago it’s not the actual temperature that gets you, but the wind-chill. A scarf makes all the difference.”

Maren: Fleece-lined tights (or fleece-lined anything) and Glogg Winter Drink.

Kerri: Puffy Jacket. It may not look as cool as your wool peacoat, but it is time to embrace the sleeping-bag look.  Continue reading

Chicago Theatre Recommendations

Chicago is a fantastic theater town.  There are many big theaters, but there are great small theaters performing in church basements and storefronts. This is where real Chicago theater lives- in the performances where you could reach out and touch the actors. There are over 200 theaters producing great innovative work for almost every taste.  Most of them are listed at the League of Chicago Theatres.

Here is my basic quick guide to Chicago theaters and tips for seeing theater on the cheap.

Reviews appear in the Sun TimesTribuneChicago Reader and TimeOut ChicagoTimeout even has their “17 theatre shows to see this fall” article for some quick recommendations.

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Two Dos, Two Don’ts: Ta Da

Things To Do

The Personal Edition

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Last week we posted a more practical To Do List, with things like IDs and immunization forms. Hopefully we can intersperse those activities with some of the more enjoyable aspects of living in Chicago. Read below for ideas of how to spend the last couple of weeks of summer and hopefully relax a bit before we dive into Colloquium on the 14th!

1. Read about Chicago! This is a great time to find out about events here and to pick a news source for the year. Check out Chicago Reader, Time Out Chicago, or New City. There are also the long-standing Chicago newspapers, The Tribune and Sun-Times.

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Chicagoland of the Free

In a past post we covered Chicago Transit- here is another chance to put it to use, with  free or inexpensive summer activities here in Chicago. Go forth and explore without breaking the bank!

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Botanical Garden’s Employee of the Month

Museums:

Chicago Botanic Garden:

Admission to the garden is free daily, though parking costs $25 dollars. So it is completely free if you bike. They also host concerts and other evening events. Continue reading

It’s a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood: A Guide to the North Side

As lovely as Hyde Park is, it’s useful and fun to get out into other Chicago neighborhoods throughout the year. We recommend trying a few during the summer after you move out here to see where your home-away-from-home in Chicago might be! To get you started, the office staff has thrown together a starter guide about a few of our favorite neighborhoods around town…

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Bicycling

 

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One of the easiest and most reliable ways to get around Hyde Park is a bicycle. Even Chicago as a whole is pretty bike-friendly, with the beautiful path from Hyde Park up and along the lake to North Side neighborhoods like Lincoln Park. It is a beautiful ride and surprisingly fast, since there are no cars to wait or watch out for. Even just within Hyde Park, a bike can be a quick and easy way to get to campus, grab groceries, etc.

 

So, where are these so-called bicycles and where do I put my hands on those handle bars?

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The Transporter…. aka CTA

Chicago is a vast city with incredible neighborhoods, sites, and food. All year, we’ll encourage you to take advantage of this city and explore its many neighborhoods, from Lincoln Park to Logan Square to Chinatown (and beyond!).

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Wicker Park Coffee Shop.

This post will help you navigate public transport in Chicago. Even if you have a car, public transit will help you get wherever you are going. (For those of you who already live here, feel free to post any tips or helpful info we may have missed down in the comments section). And your devoted Mentors can also offer directions, transport advice, and even correct some Google Map directions to and from Hyde Park! Feel free to email us or pop into the office for additional info.

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What To Do With Your Parents This Weekend

This way to Convocation! (says Gorey)

This way to Convocation! (says Gorey)

Okay, so, you already know where to eat. You know what to do Friday afternoon (the MAPH Family & Friends reception!) and Saturday (graduate!). But, as someone who has spent the last 9 months sequestered in some kind of library, you may not be entirely sure how to fill up the rest of the weekend.

Don’t worry. You have many options. Here are some ideas to get you started:

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GTFO (of the Library)!

Thesis day in the animal kingdom. So like us....

Thesis Day in the animal kingdom. So like us….

This weekend, there are two things happening (memorial day, amazing weather) and one thing emphatically not happening (your thesis). The three day weekend right after the thesis deadline is a pretty sweet deal. Also, on the day I turned in my thesis, I found $40 in a parking lot. I’m just saying, good things can happen this weekend.

The MAPH office has been looking forward to the three-day weekend for a while, and we’ve put together out thoughts on the best way to spend it – read on for suggestions!

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How to Celebrate Convocation (Eating & Drinking Edition)

Halloween_Feast_FoodI know, I know. Theses are due next week. You currently live in the Reg. Last night you happened to leave your spot for like 20 minutes without marking it with a sweatshirt/scarf/coffee mug/whatever and then you came back and there’s some person sitting there in pajama pants eating Twizzlers and it had the perfect position under the florescent lights and now how are you supposed to finish anything today and that other new person is seriously talking on the phone and your advisor just emailed you again and YOU WANT ME TO THINK ABOUT CONVOCATION?!? I’m not about to graduate; I’m about to club Twizzler kid over the head with a hardcover copy of the Chicago Manual of Style and then get taken away by the UCPD and seriously how is that person managing to eat Twizzlers audibly?!?!

So it might seem like I’m jumping the gun; I get it. Buuuuut you likely are about to graduate, and people might be coming to watch you do that, and you guys might want to go out eating and drinking somewhere new and special (not that Jimmy’s isn’t special…). You’ll be done soon and then it’s time to explore! So either bookmark this page for later use or use the guide below as a mouthwatering study break.  Continue reading