A new guidebook provides 111 answers for after stay-at-home lifts to the question parents ask themselves practically daily, “What on earth can we do with the kids today?”
Author Amy Bizzarri, a teacher and mother of two, opens a world of ideas for family fun in her newest guidebook, 111 Places for Kids in Chicago That You Must Not Miss. Each chapter includes a detailed description of the place, location, hours, and suggested age ranges. The majority of the places are appropriate for children ages three through 12+.
“This book is my invitation to kids and parents to switch off the screens and go out to find the history and culture of our great city,” Bizzarri said. “Fun places and adventures galore are just waiting to be discovered.”
Water features large in the book, thanks in part to Lake Michigan. Kayak Chicago hosts seasonal fireworks floats, where families can paddle out on the lake and enjoy the Navy Pier fireworks from directly below. Children can actually learn to surf at Montrose Beach, riding the kid-friendly waves created up by the winds blowing across the lake. For smoother waters, families can paddle across the lagoon in Humboldt Park in one of the swan boats and learn the park’s history going back to 1871. At AquaMermaid School, kids of all ages can learn to maneuver a colorful mermaid tail, including fin high-fives and diving for lost treasure.
“There are some incredible photo ops at every place in this book,” said photographer Susie Inverso. “Trust me – you’ll fill scrapbooks and Instagram feeds.”
Bizzarri also included places where kids can see and touch members of the animal kingdom. Giraffes will gently munch on kale leaves from a child’s hand at the Brookfield Zoo. Beluga whales are eager to splash around with visitors at the Shedd Aquarium. GlennArt farm in the middle of the West Side offers kids the chance to feed, scratch, and chill out with urban goats.
Treasure hunts give a structure to family outings. Kids can look for all the Wizard of Oz characters in Oz Park. The Kipper Family Archeology Discovery Center is a place where kids have the opportunity to uncover historic artifacts with their fingers and brushes. Artist Hebru Brantley has painted multiple murals featuring his Flykids, and families can seek them all out across the city. At the Pullman National Monument, a planned industrial community for employees of the Palace Car Company, kids who complete a series of fun activities there can take the oath to become a Junior National Park Ranger.
The area also offers food from around the world, both savory and sweet. Families can cook their own Korean BBQ over fire on the table at San Soo Gab San and enjoy an elegant British tea party at the Langham Hotel. Kids will want to taste candies from across Asia at Aji Ichiban and luscious pastries from India at Tahoora Sweets and Bakery, or fill a unicorn piñata with traditional Mexican candies at Dulcelandia.
The book 111 Places for Kids in Chicago That You Must Not Miss invites families to explore their city in a whole new way. “The key is to walk out the door together in search of adventures, and you’ll end up creating memories that will last a lifetime,” said Bizzarri.
This book is part of the illustrated 111 Places guidebook series that presents cities, regions, countries, and specialty themes from a different and personal perspective. Go off the beaten path to find the hidden places, stories, shops, and neighborhoods that unlock a destination’s true character, history, and flavor. The series is published by Emons Publishing.
Author Amy Bizzarri is a freelance travel writer from Chicago focused on family, food, and fun, with a special interest in family adventure travel. A teacher with 20+ years of experience and a Master of Arts in Education with a focus on bilingual education, Bizzari believes that learning is best accompanied by a big dose of fun.
Photographer Susie Inverso has spent many years running around Chicago photographing the Chicago Transit Authority public transit system, and photographs weddings and portraits for her company, Crimson Cat Studios.
For more about the book, go to www.111Places.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.