Get your baskets ready and don your bonnet! The Easter Bunny is hopping on down to Chicago just in time for Easter Sunday (April 16, 2017) and there's a festive event for every family. From dining with the Bunny in an elegant ballroom in a mansion to setting off on a wild egg hunt together with knights in shining armor, here are ten, family-friendly Easter adventures in Chicago.
The fascinating Driehaus Museum is housed in a gorgeous, Gilded Age Chicago mansion. This year, the museum will be hosting a brand new Easter brunch in the elegant ballroom of the museum. Your Easter museum adventure will begin with special toast followed by a delicious buffet brunch catered by Parties and Special Events by Lettuce Entertain You and enlivened with live music. For the little ones, a reading of Beatrix Potter’s 1902 classic Peter Rabbit will complement the arrival of a very special guest, the Easter Bunny.
Chicago's hot dining scene has your family covered if you're hoping for a new, international take on the classic Easter Brunch. Café Ba-Ba-Reeba!, a Spanish outpost in Lincoln Park, is hosting its annual tapas-style Easter menu: You'll find all your family's favorite pintxos including deviled eggs with bacon, short stack of pancakes and waffle-battered chicken sticks, as well as a Bloody Mary Bar for the adults.
Osteria Via Stato will be hosting a traditional Italian Pasqua with a mouthwatering buffet of springtime brunch delights including ciabatta ‘French’ toast; house-made sausage and vegetable strata; and a one-of-a-kind ricotta doughnut station—where the tender-on-the-inside, crispy-on-the-outside treats will be handmade-to-order.
Travel to Paris in the springtime at Mon Ami Gabi, where a sweet French brunch with dishes like the crème brûlée French toast and smoked salmon hash brown benedict will be served on Easter Sunday alongside mix and match sparkling cocktails.
If you've ever dreamed of a medieval-style egg hunt complete with knights in shining armor, don't miss the inaugural Great Chicago Egg Hunt, presented by Medieval Times and the Chicago Park District’s Maggie Daley Park, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Friday, April 14, on the park’s central lawn. Children ages 1 to 12 are invited to search for more than 10,000 (!!!) candy-filled eggs in what's guaranteed to be the hoppy-est hunt in town. The festivities begin with an opening parade of knights on horseback followed by three waves of colossal egg-hunting (10:30 a.m.,11:15 a.m. and 12 p.m.). When you're not on the hunt for eggs, check out the sword fighting demonstrations, photo opportunities with Medieval Times’ king and princess, interactive knights-in-training activities (for children ages 6-12), crafts, games, face-painting and other family-friendly activities.
Where: Maggie Daley Park, 337 E. Randolph Street
When: Friday, April 14, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
RSVP (Registration will be limited to 1,000 children. Advance registration is recommended. A $5 fee per child will benefit the Chicago Park District’s Teen programs.)
4. Find the Golden Easter Egg on the Gold Coast
Thompson Chicago, the luxury lifestyle hotel in Chicago’s Gold Coast, is hosting a fun play on the traditional Easter Egg Hunt and guests who discover one of the festive surprises this year will be eligible to enter into Thompson Chicago’s social media contest for a chance to win a complimentary 1-night stay at the hotel. Easter eggs containing prizes from Thompson, their Oak Street Council neighbors, and the hotel’s seafood-inspired Italian restaurant, Nico Osteria, will be popping up in guestrooms all weekend long.
Included with the prizes for elegant dinners, luxury goods, and special enhancements to your stay at Thompson Chicago, the eggs will contain a note encouraging a social media post of the lucky find with the hashtags #GoldenEggHunt and #ThompsonChicago. All guests who participate will be entered to win the 1-night stay Grand Prize.
Where: Thompson Chicago, 21 E. Bellevue Place
When: Special 15% discounted rate for overnight stays on Friday, April 14, and Saturday, April 15.
BOOK A ROOM (Request the “Golden Easter in the Gold Coast” package. Phone reservations: 312-266-2100)
5. Enjoy an Elegant Easter Brunch with the Bunny at the Iconic Drake Hotel
Celebrate Easter at the Drake Hotel's Gold Coast Ballroom, where you'll be serenaded with live jazz music as you enjoy the swanky hotel's signature brunch. Step into the Drake Room for face painting, caricatures, and balloon twisting, as well as fun photo opps with the Easter Bunny. Ages five and under dine free.
Where: Drake Hotel, 140 E. Walton Place
When: Sunday, April 16, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
RSVP ($115 for adults, $39 for children 5 years+. Call 312-932-4344.)
Set sail on the Odyssey and cruise along Lake Michigan while enjoying with a delicious brunch with the Easter Bunny. Kids will love twirling around on the dance floor with the Easter Bunny as the luxury ship glides past the Chicago skyline.
Located on the 7th floor of Macy's on State Street, formerly Marshall Field's, the world famous Walnut Room with its beautiful wood paneling and grand chandeliers, has been a Chicago tradition since 1907. This year's Breakfast with the Bunny will serve up a fancy yet family-friendly breakfast while kids can also enjoy face painter, a balloon artist and a visit with the Easter Bunny. Little ones will also receive a stuffed white Easter bunny of their own to take home as a souvenir of their downtown Chicago Easter.
Where: The Walnut Room at Macy’s State Street, 111 N. State Street
When: Saturday, April 8th; Sunday, April 9th; and Saturday, April 15th
RESERVE A TABLE
If you love all things rock ’n’ roll, hop on over to Hard Rock Cafe Chicago for a special Easter brunch and egg hunt on Saturday, April 15. Dig into a full spread of classic American brunch favorites including a honey-baked ham carving station, sausage and bacon, scrambled eggs, French toast, roasted red potatoes, hash browns, fruit, assorted breakfast cereals, and mini muffins. Each brunch reservation includes an exciting Easter egg hunt for the kids: Eggs will be filled with candy and hidden throughout the cafe’s mezzanine and outdoor patio for the little eggs-plorers. Find the golden egg and win a special Hard Rock Cafe Easter basket to take home. Don't forget to take a selfie with the Easter Bunny who will be dancing around the cafe all day.
Where: Hard Rock Cafe Chicago, 63 W. Ontario Street
When: Saturday, April 15, with seatings at 9 a.m. and 11:30 a.m.
RSVP: Call 312-943-2252. Tickets are $25 for ages 11 and up, $17 10 and under.
The Rainforest Cafe is hosting a Cha! Cha!’s Egg-Cellent Easter Adventure and brave children and families are invited to join Cha! Cha! and the Easter Bunny for a special buffet and Easter egg hunt. Every kid will take home a sweet goodie bags filled with additional treats and prizes.
Where: Rainforest Cafe, 605 N. Clark Street
When: Saturday, April 15, at 8 a.m.
10. See the Easter Bunny . . . in the Sky!
The Easter Bunny will be at the Skydeck Chicago. Kids have the opportunity to take photos with Easter Bunny on the Ledge, a glass balcony extending four feet outside the 103rd floor of Willis Tower!
Where: Skydeck Chicago
When: Saturday, April 15, noon to 4 p.m.; Sunday, April 16