The Real Chicago Treat....

October 04, 2011
Some may not get the reference to the Rice Aroni jingle in today's Real Chicago blog title... however if you're keen to old jingles from the mid-90s-- you know this tune is referencing a "San Francisco Treat..." But, let this be known.....you don't have to be in San Francisco to experience this Chicago treat. While it may have originated in that famed West Coast inclined town, we here in Chicago made it more than transportation--- we made it an itinerary item for your next vacation..... Elizabeth brings us her Real Chicago experience not to be missed in this week's Real Chicago Blog: Ever wonder how “the windy city” received its name Chicago, or how the street with the infamous “Magnificent Mile” received the name of Michigan Avenue?  Well, you can find these answers out and many more fun facts, while cruising around the beautiful city some of us are lucky to call home, Chicago.  The Hop on Hop Off Chicago Trolley Tours takes you around 13 miles of the historical, and architectural streets of the city of Chicago.  Sit back, relax, sip on a locally Chicago brewed 312, and let these old-fashioned San Francisco style trolleys show and teach you things even Chicago natives never knew! The experience I had on the trolley ride was with 12 of my fondest co-workers, playing hooky, eh hem ...I mean “training” one lovely Wednesday afternoon.  We started the tour at the tip top of the Mangificent Mile, and made our way South down Lakeshore Drive taking in the views of the lake and Navy Pier on a beautiful fall afternoon, then took a turn West bound and drove down Michigan Avenue, then making our way South to The Financial District, and topped off the tour with amazing city/water views from Solidarity Road, while receiving a crash course on the history of Chicago.  On the tour, while enjoying the views of amazing architecture, public art, hotels, restaurants, Willis Tower, and more we learned many educational facts about Chicago from a quite entertaining retired teacher as our guide.  Here are a few of the fun tid bits we learned on the tour….Now I won’t give them all away, because you will need to learn for yourself on a trolley tour adventure! Chicago Fun Facts:
  • Chicago Tribune Building, a Chicago Landmark, has labeled stones from landmark buildings from all 50 states and all over the world, to include The Great Wall of China, the White House, as well as The original Twin Towers.
  • Merchandise Mart- in 1929 was considered so large it had its very own zip code.
  • Good Ol’ Mcy D’s, “McDonalds”, started in Des Plaines, IL.
  • Michigan Avenue- The streets between Michigan Avenue and Lake Michigan are manmade; the street got its name Michigan Avenue because that is originally where the shore of Lake Michigan came to.