Neighborhood News – Lincoln Park, Chicago Loop, Lincoln Square, Gold Coast

It may be cold in January, but Chicago has some ‘hot’ indoor neighborhood activities planned for this weekend. Also, we celebrate the life and legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. on the anniversary of his birth.

Chicago’s Lincoln Park Conservatory, 2391 N. Stockton Drive, re-opens for tours this week with FREE, timed-entry tickets. Times are available this Friday, January 14, and Wednesday-Sunday from 10am to 3pm.  Chicago’s “City in a Garden” showcases exotic plants in permanent display houses in the Palm Room, Fern Room, and Orchid Room. Visitors enjoy a lush tropical paradise full of towering palms, brilliant blooms, and ancient ferns. To reserve tickets, click here.

Spend time with a beluga whale, or see an amazing array of sea creatures from around the world during the Shedd Aquarium’s FREE ADMISSION days, this month from Thursday, January 13-Monday, January 17. Located at 1200 S. DuSable Lake Shore Drive, the storied aquarium features such memorable exhibits as the ecosystem of the Caribbean Reef, several varieties of sharks, a world-class dolphin show, a Polar Play Zone, and those cute Magellanic Penguins! Free tickets must be reserved, with a service charge. For tickets and information, click here.

Wilkommen! Join Lincoln Square’s German-American Dank Haus, 4740 N. Lincoln Avenue, for Kaffee, Kuchen, und Kino (cinema) this Saturday, January 15 at noon. The get-together takes place in the Brauhaus Room. Kaffee und Kuchen (coffee & cakes) are served, starting at noon. Tickets are $4 for members and $6 for non-members. For more information, click here.

“Too hot to ‘Handel’?” Never! For the 17th year in a row, a jazz-gospel version of Handel’s stirring ‘Messiah’ heats up the Auditorium Theatre, 50 E. Ida B. Wells Drive (formerly Congress Street,) on Martin Luther King, Jr.   weekend! Performances are Saturday, January 15 at 7:30pm and Sunday, January 16 at 3pm. The Chicago Reader calls the concert “exuberant,” with three gifted soloists–Alfreda Burke, Karen-Marie Richardson, and Rodrick Dixon leading a chamber orchestra, jazz combo, and choir. Tickets range from $35 to $75. Click here for more information.

TheChicago Sinfonietta presents its annual Martin Luther King Jr. Tribute Concert on Sunday, January 16 at Wentz Concert Hall at North Central College, Chicago Ave, Naperville, and Monday, January 17, at Orchestra Hall, 220 S. Michigan Avenue, Chicago, honors his life with three Florence Price works – Ethiopia’s Shadow in America, Song of Sunday, Virgin, and Night, sung by baritone Will Liverman. Felix Mendelssohn’s Elijah is next, followed by two Chicago premieres: Jessie Montgomery’s Soul Force, and Emmy-nominated, Artist-in-Residence Kathryn Bostic’s work The Great Migration, narrated by Liverman. Tickets range from $17 for students to $62 for adults. For tickets, click here.

Chicago’s amazing architectural history comes alive on Chicago’s Gold Coast Saturday, January 15, through 45-minute docent-led tours of Louis Sullivan & Frank Lloyd Wright-designed, tri-level Charnley-Persky House, 1365 N. Astor Street. The tour includes exterior and interior spaces on three levels. 

Note: For all events listed here- Masks are required for all patrons, and everyone five years of age and older are required to provide proof of full vaccination. Those 16 years of age or older must also provide a valid photo ID.

Alison Moran and Dean’s Team Chicago