24 hours in Chicago

[slickr-flickr tag=”ChicagoIl”]

We only had a day to explore the Windy City, but with the help of friends on Facebook and Twitter we found the best art, architecture and — perhaps most importantly — the food.

The day we arrived, we headed to Hot Doug’s for their famous italian sausage and hot dogs – recommended by a friend at the Tribune. Next, we called for take-out at Pequods for the best deep-dish pizza. We enjoyed dinner in our temporary home at the Candlewood Suites Chicago-O’Hare.

After so much good food the night before, we were fueled up and ready to see Chicago at street level. But after a quick stop at Starbucks we were sky high.

No, literally.

We went to the Sky Deck at Willis Tower to get a bird’s eye view of the city and Lake Michigan.

Then we headed to Grant Park with the fountains in mind. Only, there were a lot of people there. And they were fenced in for a little event known as Lollapalooza. Good thing it was only day one of the concert series.

Instead of Grant Park we went to the Art Institute of Chicago galleries. It had everything we were looking for: bathrooms, air conditioning and benches.

Just kidding, we wanted to spend time in the impressionism collections, and the traveling Liechtenstein exhibit. We also had a chance to see some Georgia O’Keeffe and Jackson Pollock, who Aren studied last year in school.

And, of course, the painting American Gothic, by Grant Wood. (In the slide show you will see the parody painting from Hot Doug’s).

Next we took the river walk to the Navy Pier. Our favorite place was the Crystal Garden and its fountains. We hope we’ll have a chance to come back and visit the Miracle Mile.