Media contact:

Johnny Ford
Shedd Aquarium
317.441.0876 (cell)

Emily Clark
Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises

Michelle Gonzalez
Choose Chicago

WHAT: Three Magellanic penguins from Shedd Aquarium made a special visit to Shaw’s Crab House in Chicago to celebrate and support Chicago Restaurant Week and bring attention to an important conservation issue impacting aquatic animals across the globe: plastic pollution. Shaw’s, part of the Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, is one of several restaurants participating in Chicago Restaurant Week that have committed to reducing their single-use plastic footprint via Shedd’s new Let’s Shedd Plastic program for restaurants.

Let’s Shedd Plastic empowers restaurants to take feasible and measurable steps toward reducing their plastic footprint, which has only increased because of the pandemic. Offering the aquarium’s expertise to restaurant partners that join the program, Shedd hopes to engage restaurants from all 77 neighborhoods of the city to create a healthier and more sustainable, plastic-free future for people and aquatic life. A current list of participating restaurants can be found here.

Chicago Restaurant Week, led by Choose Chicago, is a 17-day dining extravaganza featuring nearly 300 participating restaurants throughout Chicagoland offering specially priced prix fixe menus at brunch, lunch and dinner. Participating restaurants have COVID-19 safety precautions in place to ensure a safe dining experience and for the first time is offering carryout and delivery options this year for folks who prefer to support from home. Efforts like Chicago Restaurant Week are an integral part in the overall recovery of the city of Chicago and encourages Chicagoans to support the local restaurant industry, which has been severely impacted by the pandemic.

The field trip to Shaw’s provided great exercise for Shedd’s penguin ambassadors, adding variety to their day and engaging their senses as they explored a new space. The visit also highlights the role of restaurants in fighting plastic pollution and illustrates how the threat of plastics is directly related to the health and wellbeing of the aquatic world. The aquarium is proud to collaborate with other accredited zoos and aquariums on a Species Survival Plan for Magellanic penguins, contributing to conservation and education efforts and helping the public understand how our collective actions are integral to safeguarding the species.

WHEN: Chicago Restaurant Week runs from March 19 through April 4.

WHERE: To see a full list of Chicago Restaurant Week participating restaurants and menus, click here. Check out Shaw’s Crab House – Chicago’s Restaurant Week menus for dine-in and carryout, here. For a full list of the more than 30 Lettuce Entertain You restaurants participating in Chicago Restaurant Week, click here.

VIDEO: Tilly, Olivia and Dolores, three Magellanic penguins from Shedd Aquarium explore Shaw’s Crab House, adding physical exercise and variety to their day as part of their overall welfare plan. The visit also highlights Chicago Restaurant Week and encourages Chicagoans and restaurants to consider how we can all reduce our single-use plastic footprint to protect aquatic life. Shaw’s Crab House was closed to the public during the penguins’ field trip and all the proper cleaning and sanitization procedures were followed.

Video credit: ©Shedd Aquarium/Gavin Wright

Photo credit: ©Shedd Aquarium/Brenna Hernandez

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About Shedd Aquarium

The John G. Shedd Aquarium in Chicago sparks compassion, curiosity and conservation for the aquatic animal world. Home to 32,000 aquatic animals representing 1,500 species of fishes, reptiles, amphibians, invertebrates, birds and mammals from waters around the globe, Shedd is a recognized leader in animal care, conservation education and research. An accredited member of the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA), the organization is an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution and supported by the people of Chicago, the State of Illinois and the Chicago Park District.

About Choose Chicago

Choose Chicago is the official sales and marketing organization responsible for promoting Chicago as a global visitor and meetings destination, leveraging the city’s unmatched assets to ensure the economic vitality of the city and its member business community. Follow @ChooseChicago on Twitter and on Instagram, Like us on Facebook. For more information, visit and make Chicago Restaurant Week reservations at #ChicagoRestaurantWeek | #ChicagoHome | #Only1Chicago

About Shaw’s Crab House

Shaw’s Crab House is a seafood restaurant and oyster bar located in Chicago’s River North and Schaumburg, IL. The restaurant is a Chicago institution that boasts a selection of fresh seafood and oysters with a longstanding commitment to offering top quality ingredients since 1984. Working directly with fishermen and farmers, Shaw’s sources daily catches flown in from coast-to-coast. The restaurant is currently open for seating in the dining room and oyster bar, patio dining, carryout and delivery.

About Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises

Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, Inc. (LEYE) is an independent, family-owned restaurant group based in Chicago that owns, manages and licenses more than 130 establishments in Illinois, Minnesota, Maryland, Nevada, California, Texas, Virginia and Washington D.C. We were founded in June 1971 by Richard Melman and Jerry A. Orzoff with the opening of R.J. Grunts and today, thanks to the creativity of our partners, we proudly service guests at more than 60 concepts ranging from fast casual to fine dining restaurants.