Unique and Economical Things to Do in Chicago

The Top 10 List

Are you a native of Chicago, but not aware of the many economical and unique things you can do in Chicago with a piggy bank budget?  Are you planning to visit Chicago, but would like to enjoy the sights and sounds without going bankrupt?  Here is a list of top 10 economical and unique things to do in Chicago throughout the summer and fall.


Chicago's Summer Dance


 1.  Chicago’s Summer Dance:

    Chicago’s Summer Dance takes place starting July 7th and ends September 18th.  It is the largest outdoor summer dance of its kind.  With a 4,600 square foot dance floor, anyone can dance from 6 till 9:30 in the evening.  The Chicago Summer Dance venue also offers dancing lessons to those embarrassed by their two left feet.  The live music selection always offers a variety of sounds, from salsa to jazz and folk music.  There’s also plenty of seating for those who would like to sit and watch.  But I guarantee you won’t be sitting for long. 



    Graceland Cemetary 1


     2.  Graceland Cemetery:

      Yes I said it correctly, Graceland CEMETARY.  Now before you move on to #3, let me explain.  Even though Graceland Cemetery serves as the final resting place for folks who have been deceased since the 1800’s, it is far from being some creepy village of the walking dead.  Graceland cemetery has a huge Victorian era funerary grounds that is much like a botanical garden.  A self guided tour will reveal acres of faultless grass, weeping willow trees, flowers and peaceful hedge waters. 



      Chicago Fed Money


      3.  Chicago Fed Money Museum:

        The Chicago Fed Money Museum is the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.  They will pay you to visit by handing out a bag of shredded unfit money at the end of every tour.  There is a suitcase display stuffed with one million dollar bills.  Visitors are encouraged to take photos holding the suitcase.  There is also a giant cube packed with one million dollar bills. Many of the informational displays include an exhibit on the causes of inflation and who is affected by inflation.  There is also an exhibit explaining the complete history of the Federal Reserve.



        National Museum of Mexican Art


        4.  The National Museum of Mexican Art:

          The National Museum of Mexican Art is the only Latin museum exhibit showcasing Mexican and Mexican American art.  The museum is well known for its Day of the Dead Celebration.  The museum does not have a café or restaurant so you can save money by bringing your own lunch.  It is a great place to learn about the history and culture of Mexico through art.



          Chicago Opera Theatre


          5.   Chicago Opera Theatre:

            The Chicago Opera Theatre makes opera accessible to everyone in the community.  Known for its not so typical opera, the Chicago Opera Theatre prefers unconventional performances performed by very unconventional contemporary artist.  The theatre features mostly American composers and performers.  They also offer an educational outreach program for children. 



            Charnley-Persky House


            6.  Charnley-Persky House:

              The Charnley-Persky House is a Chicago Gold Coast mansion designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.  Visitors are welcome to take part in a 45 minute guided tour.  The Charnley-Persky House is marveled all around the world as being an iconic structure of modern architecture.  Any architectural historian would appreciate its dramatic symmetrical limestone and brick design. 



              Museum of Contemporary Photography


              7.  Museum of Contemporary Photography:

                The Museum of Contemporary Photography is the only museum in the Midwest with its main focus being contemporary photography.  The museum encourages individual expression, creativity and enlightened thought by using contemporary photography for inspiration. 



                Green City Market


                8.  Green City Market:

                  Green City Market is a non for profit organization that organizes a community of local farmers in an effort to provide fresh fruits and vegetables that have been locally home grown. The market began in a street alley in 1998 but has grown to be one of the largest in the nation.


                  Biking in Chicago


                  9.  Biking:

                    Biking along the lake front in Chicago is big and I mean BIG!  Chicago has a reputation for gangsters and biking. One thing for sure; you will never see a gangster on a bike, but then again you never know.   Chicago has 117 miles of bike lane.   Even the Chicago transit buses have motorized bike racks in front of every bus so bikers can hitch their bikes safely while cruising a ride to the lake front.



                    Kids for Kites


                    10. Kite Flying in Montrose Beach and Harbor:

                      Lastly,  one of the most economical and unique things that you can do in Chicago, is purchase a kite and join the other kite flying enthusiast on Kite Flying Day at Montrose Beach and Harbor.  The technical name for this event is Mayor Daley’s Kids and Kites Festival, but you will find a lot of adults releasing their inner child on the harbor.  The city of Chicago even gives away kite kits so children can design and create their own kites. 

                       Here's wishing you lots of unique and economical fun in Chicago!