Get the latest Chicago news and updates for July 2012 as it relates to travel professionals.

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Chicago News and Updates for Travel Professionals: July 2012

Gospel Music Museum Set to Open in Bronzeville

On the heels of last month's 27th Annual Gospel Music Fest in Bronzezville comes an exciting announcement for fans of the genre: This fall, a brand new gospel music museum will open in the same neighborhood. From the Chicago Sun-Times:

Plans for a museum have been resurrected for a spot across from the landmark Pilgrim Baptist Church, 3300 S. Indiana. In the 1930s, its congregation played a role in the rise of gospel music, as the home base of Thomas A. Dorsey, the father of gospel music, and author of more than 3,000 blues and gospel songs, including "Take My Hand, Precious Lord" (1932), recorded by acts as diverse as Elvis Presley, Merle Haggard and Ike and Tina Turner.

Translation? The new gospel music museum will stand close to the church where Dorsey changed the world of gospel music. A fitting home in Bonzeville, no doubt.

The new gospel music museum, which will be named the Chicago Gospel Music Heritage Museum, is aiming for an October 2012 opening.


Museum of Broadcast Communications Opens

In more museum news, Chicago's Museum of Broadcast Communications reopened in its new home on State Street, just north of the Chicago River, this summer.

The first thing groups will notice about the building is its two-story glass-and-steel atrium. Inside, the place is packed with radio and broadcast memorabilia. Some new collections and elements include:

  • WGN's Family Classics set
  • 173 inductee posters in the only National Radio Hall of Fame Gallery
  • Touch screen access to radio's greatest voices and most memorable moments
  • The "original" Charlie McCarthy, Mortimer Snerd and Effie Klinkler
  • A working radio and television studio

Hours: Tues.–Sat., 10am–5pm
Group Tours: Minimum of 20 guests


New Exhibit at Adler Planetarium

The Adler Planetarium is more than sky shows — it's also where groups can go inside the mysterious depths of the universe and explore a wide variety of space-science topics, like the Adler's newest exhibit, The Universe: A Walk Through Space and Time.

Opened July 13, this exhibit transports visitors to the distant corners of the cosmos to witness how the Universe evolved over 13.7 billion years — from the Big Bang to modern day.

The exhibit includes:
  • Holograms and multimedia displays that show how galaxies, stars and planets were created
  • Touch-screen technology that allows guests to investigate the objects of deep space
  • Overhead projections showing ultra high-resolution images of the most beautiful objects in space
  • Interactive stations that allow guests to send themselves e-postcards from other planets and galaxies

Group visits: Contact Mara Sullivan at 312-294 0360 or groups@adlerplanetarium.org.


O'Hare and Midway Airports to Get Free Wi-Fi

Beginning late this summer, free Wi-Fi will be available at both O'Hare International Airport and Midway International Airport.

Wi-Fi access (which currently costs travelers $6.95/day) will be free for specific news, sports, shopping, gaming and travel websites. This Wi-Fi deal, between the City of Chicago and Internet Service Provider Boingo Communications, does not yet include access to email platforms, but is expected to include a limited period of time to access email at no charge.

More details

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