Gold Coast

The Gold Coast Historic District, located on Chicago's Near North Side, is one of the prettiest (and most pedigreed) neighborhoods in the city. It earned its glitzy reputation in 1882, when millionaire Potter Palmer built a forty-two room castle overlooking Lake Michigan. Other famous and wealthy Chicagoans followed and, to this day, the area is one of the exclusive in the city. Here are five kid-friendly stops in this elegant city neighborhood so you and your family can celebrate the good life.

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Sprinkles Cupcakes (50 East Walton)

It's always cupcake time, and Sprinkles Cupcakes are among the best in the city. Handcrafted from the finest ingredients, these cupcakes boast sweet cream butter, bittersweet Belgian chocolate, pure Madagascar Bourbon vanilla, and fresh fruit fillings, all topped with a trademark colorful dot. 

Oak Street Beach (1000 North Lake Shore Drive)

Nestled in a lakeside corner of the Gold Coast, at this sandy beach you can view the city's stunning architecture on one side and the seemingly never-ending lake horizon on the other.  

Chicago Children's Theater (Ruth Page Center for the Arts)

The critically-acclaimed Chicago Children's Theatre is dedicated to providing high-quality, professional year-round children's programming. Every single show they've presented has been a delight for our family, especially for my daughter, age 3.  

Now housed at the Gold Coast's Ruth Page Center for the Arts (1016 North Dearborn Street), the theatre has just announced its imaginative productions for 2013/14, including:

  • A Year with Frog and Toad, the company's inaugural production eight years ago, directed again by Henry Godinez (October 9-November 24).
  • The world premiere of Mr. Chickee's Funny Money, a new rhythm and blues musical, based on the best-selling book by Christopher Paul Curtis, also featuring music and lyrics by Motown legend Lamont Dozier and his son Paris Dozier, directed by Derrick Sanders (January 21- March 2)
  • The return of The Very Hungry Caterpillar and other Eric Carle Favorites performed by Mermaid Theatre of Nova Scotia at The Ruth Page Center for the Arts (April 29 - June 1).

Order your family pass today.

Madison and Friends (43 East Oak Street)

You'll find all the trendy, high fashion kiddie duds in this charming boutique. This is our go-to shop for special occasions and baby gifts. You won't find a sweeter shop in the city featuring such absolutely adorable name-brand (but pricey!) boys and girls clothing.

Original Pancake House (22 East Bellevue Place)

Though the line for a table often snakes out the door, it's worth the wait for the classic omelets and pancakes at this classic breakfast house. The highlight of the menu is the Apple Pancake, a giant pancake glazed with apples and cinnamon sugar.  

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