Saturday, September 25, 2010

Phishin' in Chicago

Ahh, time has escaped me! I cannot believe it's been over a week since my last post. I've been super busy with work and studying for the almighty CPA exam. Studying consumes the majority of my time these days. Anyway, I wanted to post about some of my vacations that I took earlier this summer!

First we'll start with Chicago! I'll post about the other major summer vacation later.

My boyfriend, Ryan, LOVES Phish (I'm a pretty big fan too). The main reason for our trip to Chicago was the Phish concert. It was the kick-off show of their summer tour. And it was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! The concert was on June 11 at Toyota Park. Here's a few pictures from the show:

Ryan and I out in the lot before the show

Me in front of the stage, waiting for the show to start

 Ryan and I sitting near the stage before the show

 Phish at the beginning of the show

After dark

Since we were going to be there already, we decided to stay a couple extra days and explore the city. We stayed at a fantastic hotel, Hotel Allegro, right in the heart of downtown Chicago. We were walking distance from the "L" which made our travel around the city very easy.

The day after the concert we pretty much just wandered the streets of down town Chicago. We ended up walking quite a few more blocks than intended, so we just HAD to stop for some yummy cheesecake in order to re-energize ourselves! After the mid-afternoon snack, sight-seeing and window shopping, we walked a few more blocks to an awesome steakhouse called 437 Rush where we had dinner reservations. I got such a terrific deal for this steakhouse from Groupon. For those of you who don't know about Groupon, I HIGHLY suggest the site. After dinner we walked down to the Chicago Riverfront. I made Ryan pose for a few pics :) He was very cooperative! Here's some pictures from that day:

Our hotel

Ready for a day on the town

Can we say, DELISH?

Ryan in front of the restaurant

Posing in front of the Chicago River

The next day we went to the Chicago Ribfest until it started to rain. Luckily the rain didn't last long! Once the rain let up, we decided to head to the zoo. It was pretty crowded. And honestly, I was expecting a little more since Chicago is such a big town. Still, the zoo was cool! After the zoo we took the L down to Millennium Park. We saw the "Bean" and the outdoor theater. While exploring the park we heard some music in the distance. As we walked toward the sound we discovered there was a blues festival going on. It was such a great night and the city painted such a beautiful backdrop for the outdoor concert!

The crowd at Ribfest

Official "Wash Fest" at Ribfest

At the Lincoln Park Zoo

Monkey at the zoo. That looks... comfortable?

New species?

The "Bean"

Ryan and I "in the Bean"

Millennium Park Theater

Chicago Blues Festival 2010

View of the stage with the skyline in the background

On our last day in Chicago we decided to go to the history museum before catching our flight. It was "free admission" day so that saved us some money. Unfortunately, it seemed like half the city showed up for the free admission, so it was VERY packed! Oh, and don't you think the fog makes this picture look awesome?

I forgot to mention, when we arrived in Chicago it was shortly after the Chicago Black Hawks won the Stanley Cup. As we arrived to the hotel the streets were packed with people. Apparently the town had just finished a celebratory parade in honor of the win. Well, it appeared that everyone in Chicago was excited about this victory, even this "lady" at the museum of natural history.

This vacation was so much fun! It definitely marked the beginning of a spectacular summer! Stay tuned for my Colorado vacation!


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