Chicago Like a Local Blog

Unique perspectives on the city from the people who live here.

Plan a Visit with Santa: Our Top Spots to See the Big Guy in Red around Chicago

Santa at ZooLights

Every year, Santa Claus swings through Chicago on his sleigh so he can do some last-minute Mag Mile shopping and check the lists of all the good little boys and girls. If you're looking for that treasured Santa photo opp, or if you just want to let him know that you've been nicer than naughtier, here are eight spots to catch Santa in Chicago before he heads back to the North Pole to prepare for his grand Christmas Eve voyage around the world.


Weekend Alert December 2–4: Champagne Tasting, Holiday Fun at Navy Pier's Winter Festival, Unique Art Showcase & Holiday Fair + SO MUCH MORE!

Winter Wonderfest

We're already in the holiday spirit! Are you? Well, Chicago is the perfect place to enjoy the holiday festivities. From wine & cookie tastings to the finest holiday attractions ever, we've got the top happenings this weekend all in one place. It's time to make weekend plans. Don't forget to share your awesome pics with us on Instagram using #mychicagopix.


Looking for the Best Burgers in and around Downtown Chicago? We've Got You Covered

epic burger

Did you know that burgers were “invented” in Chicago? That’s right—immigrant workers ate meat patties for lunch while helping to construct the buildings that would become Chicago’s World’s Fair in 1893. Of course, burgers have evolved a lot since then. And since Chicago has cemented itself as a foodie destination, chefs are constantly outdoing themselves with their own take on this American classic.


Visit Santa's Suite, Skate on a Rooftop Sky Rink or Enjoy a Holiday Tea—These 8 Chicago Hotels Will Make Your Season Merry and Bright

Langham Hotel

If you're looking for a magical winter getaway or staycation filled with cheer, Chicago's hotels go above and beyond during the holiday season. From elevators decked out with candy delights, to grand trees festooned with gilded ornaments, the attention to detail and creativity will warm your heart.


Nutcrackers + More! December Holiday Dance Treats

Christopher Wheeldon's Nutcracker

Snowflakes and icicles are on the march, along with an army of toy soldiers, marauding mice, and delicious dancing treats, as multiple Nutcrackers once again launch Chicago’s holiday season. 


Swedish Christmas in Andersonville: Late Night Shopping, St. Lucia Festival + Traditional Holiday Celebrations

Holidays in Andersonville

It's hard to believe that at one time there were more Swedes in Chicago than in any city outside of Stockholm. Most settled in the charming North Side neighborhood of Andersonville. During the holidays, Andersonville celebrates with Swedish traditions, lovely holiday decor, late-night shopping and dining and fun, family-friendly events. Here are three December events you won't want to miss this holiday season in Andersonville.


Take a Trip to Webster Avenue: Chicago's Latest Foodie Destination

Sweet Mandy B's

Webster Avenue in Lincoln Park is home to some of the city’s best dining spots. There’s so much culinary talent represented across sweet and savory selections for each meal of the day, you’re sure to fall for this quaint street and its lively neighborhood feel. Explore the city’s beautiful North Side and make Webster Avenue your pit stop for tasty and affordable fare. Read on to learn about some of our favorite picks.


Give the Gift of Experience with These 10 Chicago-Based, Experiential Holiday Gift Ideas

Holidays on Michigan Avenue

What do you get the person in your life who has everything for the holidays? Or the kid in your life who already has a toy box packed with toys? Consider gifting a unique Chicago experience! Here are ten meaningful gift ideas that will bring the best of Chicago directly to your loved one.


Weekend Alert November 25–27: Caroling at Millennium Park, Holiday Shopping Market, Holiday Events at the Zoo + More!

Zoo Lights

Hope you're having a great Thanksgiving! Once you're done eating, here are some top events you'll want to check out this weekend. We're right around the corner from Christmas, and Chicago is the perfect place to get yourself in the spirit, from shopping vintage in Fulton Market to singing along to your favorite carols downtown!


The Best in Chicago's Fall Menus: From French and Italian to Spanish to Armenian-Inspired Cuisine, Experience the Harvest Bounty

The Florentine

As the weather grows colder—and quickly!—rich, hearty flavors beckon us inside from the chill. The bright colors of autumn's harvest—think roasted delicata squash, pink-red pomegranates, pumpkin seeds, swiss chard and more—warm and delight us. This time of year, many of Chicago’s top restaurants transition to new fall menus, which means you'll reap the bounty of eating seasonally, plus you may get the opportunity to find new favorite dishes at old favorite


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