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CHICAGO, ILLINOIS

Signature City Chicago: Your Kind of Town

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Road Scholar
Program #2818RJ
6 Days | 5 Nights
ACTIVITY LEVEL: Moderate
Road Scholar has thousands of educational adventures to choose from. A good way to narrow down our list is to browse our collection of "Most Popular" programs.
See all of our Most Popular programs.
EasyFor people looking to exercise their minds more than their bodies. There’s minimal walking and not too many stairs.
ModerateThese programs get you on your feet and include activities such as walking up to a mile in a day through a city and standing in a museum for a few hours.
ActiveFor people who enjoy walking as much as two miles a day, perhaps to explore historic neighborhoods or a nature trail.
Moderately ChallengingFor hardy explorers who enjoy a good physical challenge, spending most of their days on the go.
ChallengingGet ready to keep up with our highest-energy group. These demanding — and rewarding — programs are for seasoned outdoor enthusiasts.

Itinerary for Jan 11 — Jan 16, 2015

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Type: Full Service Hotel

Description: The Hilton Chicago is one of Chicago's famous luxury hotels. Built in 1927 in the Beaux-arts style of architecture, the hotel has been the host to Presidents and Royalty and has been featured in many popular movies.

Contact info:
720 South Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605 USA
phone: 312-922-0400
web: http://www.hiltonchicagohotel.com/

Room amenities: In-room concierge technology, HDTVs, Wireless Internet service available for additional fee

Facility amenities: The hotel features contemporary design and an exciting atmosphere. Located across from Grant Park, it is within walking distance to many Chicago attractions including the museum campus, the Art Institute and Millennium Park. The rooms are decorated in a sophisticated style and feature HDTVs, in-room concierge computers and high-speed Internet access (for an additional fee). The lobby offers free wi-fi. The hotel has a state of the art fitness room featuring free weights and indoor walking/running track, heated indoor pool, whirlpool and sauna.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Bathroom: Some Double rooms offer two bathrooms

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call for information
Call hotel for information on rates 312-922-4400

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day One: Sunday, January 11 - Arrival and Hotel Check-in / Program Registration...
Arrival and Hotel Check-in / Program Registration / Welcome Dinner / Orientation

Afternoon: Hotel Check-in: Available from 3:00 p.m. Program Registration: After you have your room assignment, come over to the Road Scholar desk in the lobby and pick up your arrival packet containing your name-tag, up-to-date schedule we will review during Orientation, and to confirm the time and location of the Orientation session. If you arrive late, please ask for your packet at the front desk when you check in.

Dinner: We will have dinner this evening at a downtown restaurant.

Evening: Orientation: The Group Leader will greet you with a warm welcome and introduce everyone. We will review the up-to-date daily program schedule and any changes, discuss responsibilities, safety guidelines, emergency procedures, and answer any questions you may have.

During free time, the Group Leader will often be available to guide informal excursions, activities, or meals not included in the program. You are welcome to join if you wish, with any associated costs (if any) on your own, or explore independently.

Please be aware that program activities and scheduled times could change due to local circumstances. In the event of changes, we will alert you as quickly as possible. Thank you for your understanding.

The remainder of the evening is free to continue getting to know your fellow participants. Settle in to your room and get a good night’s sleep for the full day tomorrow.

Lodging: Hilton Chicago

Meals Included: Dinner
Type: Full Service Hotel

Description: The Hilton Chicago is one of Chicago's famous luxury hotels. Built in 1927 in the Beaux-arts style of architecture, the hotel has been the host to Presidents and Royalty and has been featured in many popular movies.

Contact info:
720 South Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605 USA
phone: 312-922-0400
web: http://www.hiltonchicagohotel.com/

Room amenities: In-room concierge technology, HDTVs, Wireless Internet service available for additional fee

Facility amenities: The hotel features contemporary design and an exciting atmosphere. Located across from Grant Park, it is within walking distance to many Chicago attractions including the museum campus, the Art Institute and Millennium Park. The rooms are decorated in a sophisticated style and feature HDTVs, in-room concierge computers and high-speed Internet access (for an additional fee). The lobby offers free wi-fi. The hotel has a state of the art fitness room featuring free weights and indoor walking/running track, heated indoor pool, whirlpool and sauna.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Bathroom: Some Double rooms offer two bathrooms

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call for information
Call hotel for information on rates 312-922-4400

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Two: Monday, January 12 - City Field Trip by Motor Coach / Free Evening
Breakfast: Buffet in hotel.

Morning: Mark Twain wrote in 1883, "It is hopeless for the occasional traveler to try to keep up with Chicago. She outgrows his prophecies faster than he can make them." Led by an expert we will have a motorcoach exploration to learn about Chicago history, the immigrants and neighborhoods who gave it a rich culture and texture, and the movers and shakers whose influence made it a world-class city. We begin our journey north along Michigan Avenue down Lakeshore Drive to Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs. As time and traffic allow we will stop at various loctions along the way.

Lunch: Enjoy traditional Greek food at a neighborhood restaurant in "Greektown" setting of the fictional "My Big Fat Greek Wedding."

Afternoon: Mark Twain wrote in 1883, “It is hopeless for the occasional visitor to try to keep up with Chicago. She outgrows his prophecies faster than he can make them.” Led by an expert, we will have a motorcoach exploration to learn about Chicago history, the immigrants and neighborhoods who gave it a rich culture and texture, and the movers and shakers whose influence made it a world-class city. Our journey will take us north to Wrigley Field, home of the Chicago Cubs and then back south through downtown and several ethnic neighborhoods to learn more about the rich cultural and architechtural heritage of the city. As time and traffic allow, we will stop at various locations along the way.

Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy the foods of your choice. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions. Please see attachment to preparatory materials for a full list of area restaurants.

Evening: At leisure. Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities in the Information Packet. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions, give directions, and will also lead an informal excursion or activity you are welcome to join at your cost (if any).

Lodging: Hilton Chicago

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Type: Full Service Hotel

Description: The Hilton Chicago is one of Chicago's famous luxury hotels. Built in 1927 in the Beaux-arts style of architecture, the hotel has been the host to Presidents and Royalty and has been featured in many popular movies.

Contact info:
720 South Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605 USA
phone: 312-922-0400
web: http://www.hiltonchicagohotel.com/

Room amenities: In-room concierge technology, HDTVs, Wireless Internet service available for additional fee

Facility amenities: The hotel features contemporary design and an exciting atmosphere. Located across from Grant Park, it is within walking distance to many Chicago attractions including the museum campus, the Art Institute and Millennium Park. The rooms are decorated in a sophisticated style and feature HDTVs, in-room concierge computers and high-speed Internet access (for an additional fee). The lobby offers free wi-fi. The hotel has a state of the art fitness room featuring free weights and indoor walking/running track, heated indoor pool, whirlpool and sauna.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Bathroom: Some Double rooms offer two bathrooms

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call for information
Call hotel for information on rates 312-922-4400

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Three: Tuesday, January 13 - Willis Tower Skydeck / Federal Reserve Bank / The...
Willis Tower Skydeck / Federal Reserve Bank / The Art Institute of Chicago

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: Aboard a bus, we head to Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower), tallest building in the western hemisphere at 1,450 feet (443 meters) high -- 1,730 feet (520 meters) including the twin antenna towers. A film about the building’s construction and history sets the stage for ascending to the Sky deck on the 103rd floor, highest observation deck in the U.S., where you can step onto a glass box balcony that extends four feet outside!

We continue to the Federal Reserve Bank, where you will gain a deeper understanding of its functions, responsibilities and operations during an expert-led exploration. The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago is one of 12 regional Reserve Banks across the country that, with the Board of Governors in Washington, D.C., serve as the central bank for the U.S. The landmark building has a rich architectural history.

Lunch: Savor Chicago-style pizza at a popular local restaurant.

Afternoon: We continue via bus to the world-famous Art Institute of Chicago where you will hone your knowledge of and appreciation for art. Highlights of the permanent collection -- comprising more than 300,000 works in different media -- include “American Gothic,” the famed Chagall Windows and the Thorne Miniature Rooms. Led by art educator Joe Cunniff, we will have an introduction to key galleries, followed by free time to explore in greater depth on your own.

Dinner: At a local restaurant within walking distance of the hotel.

Evening: At leisure. You might like to stroll down Michigan Avenue, stopping and listening to music in one of the many local bars. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities in the information packet.

Lodging: Hilton Chicago

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Type: Full Service Hotel

Description: The Hilton Chicago is one of Chicago's famous luxury hotels. Built in 1927 in the Beaux-arts style of architecture, the hotel has been the host to Presidents and Royalty and has been featured in many popular movies.

Contact info:
720 South Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605 USA
phone: 312-922-0400
web: http://www.hiltonchicagohotel.com/

Room amenities: In-room concierge technology, HDTVs, Wireless Internet service available for additional fee

Facility amenities: The hotel features contemporary design and an exciting atmosphere. Located across from Grant Park, it is within walking distance to many Chicago attractions including the museum campus, the Art Institute and Millennium Park. The rooms are decorated in a sophisticated style and feature HDTVs, in-room concierge computers and high-speed Internet access (for an additional fee). The lobby offers free wi-fi. The hotel has a state of the art fitness room featuring free weights and indoor walking/running track, heated indoor pool, whirlpool and sauna.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Bathroom: Some Double rooms offer two bathrooms

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call for information
Call hotel for information on rates 312-922-4400

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Four: Wednesday, January 14 - Morning at the Field Museum of Natural History/Af...
Morning at the Field Museum of Natural History/Afternoon to explore the city on your own

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: We will board our bus to begin a day at the world-class Field Museum of Natural History. It originated in 1893 as the Columbian Museum of Chicago. The name was later changed to honor the generosity of benefactor Marshall Field and to better reflect a focus on the natural sciences. During an expert-led exploration, learn about the museum’s work and collections.

Lunch: We will have our midday meal in a private room at the Field Museum.

Afternoon: Continue your exploration of this iconic Chicago museum, with free time to delve into exhibits that interest you. Among its collections, you can learn about gems, dinosaurs, mummies, Africa, the Pacific, the Ancient Americas, Pawnee Indians, and much more. The lakefront campus is also home to the Adler Planetarium and the Shedd Aquarium, together regarded as among the finest of their kind in the world. The balance of the afternoon is yours to explore the city on your own. Your group leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Dinner: This meal has been excluded from the program cost and is on your own to enjoy the foods of your choice. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions and give directions.

Evening: Take this opportunity for personal independent exploration to see and do what interests you most. Please refer to the list of Free Time Opportunities in the Information Packet. The Group Leader will be happy to offer suggestions, give directions, and will also lead an informal excursion or activity you are welcome to join at your cost (if any).

Lodging: Hilton Chicago

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch
Type: Full Service Hotel

Description: The Hilton Chicago is one of Chicago's famous luxury hotels. Built in 1927 in the Beaux-arts style of architecture, the hotel has been the host to Presidents and Royalty and has been featured in many popular movies.

Contact info:
720 South Michigan Avenue
Chicago, IL 60605 USA
phone: 312-922-0400
web: http://www.hiltonchicagohotel.com/

Room amenities: In-room concierge technology, HDTVs, Wireless Internet service available for additional fee

Facility amenities: The hotel features contemporary design and an exciting atmosphere. Located across from Grant Park, it is within walking distance to many Chicago attractions including the museum campus, the Art Institute and Millennium Park. The rooms are decorated in a sophisticated style and feature HDTVs, in-room concierge computers and high-speed Internet access (for an additional fee). The lobby offers free wi-fi. The hotel has a state of the art fitness room featuring free weights and indoor walking/running track, heated indoor pool, whirlpool and sauna.

Smoking policy: No
Smoking policies vary by facility. During all group events and activities, smoking is prohibited.

Bathroom: Some Double rooms offer two bathrooms

Elevator: Yes

Additional nights before: Call for information
Call hotel for information on rates 312-922-4400

Check in time: 3:00 PM


Day Five: Thursday, January 15 - Chicago Power Brokers / Chicago Cultural Center /...
Chicago Power Brokers / Chicago Cultural Center / The Pedway / Farewell Dinner

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: This morning at the hotel, we are joined by Professor Zbigniew Banas to learn about Chicago's power brokers, past and present, whose influence has made the city what it is today. Professor Banas will also discuss the notorious, flamboyant political history of “the windy city” (so called, legend says, for loud, long-winded politicians and the many conventions hosted here).

We then board our motorcoach for a field trip to Chicago's Cultural Center. Called the "People's Palace,” it opened in 1897 as the first permanent home for the Chicago Public Library. When the library moved to different quarters, the building was rededicated as America’s first free municipal cultural center. We will explore the building led by an expert. The architecture is stunning with its Classical Revival style and exceptional design details, richly decorated with literary themes and Civil War motifs. The most outstanding feature is a magnificent translucent dome, 38 feet in diameter, made up of some 30,000 pieces of Tiffany Favrile glass.

We will take a short walk to another Tiffany treasure located in the 1907 Marshall Field Company building, now Macy’s flagship store in Chicago and the second-largest department store in the world. The 6,000 square foot dome of iridescent glass mosaic tops a 5-story atrium.

Lunch: At a local restaurant.

Afternoon: This afternoon we will explore the city from a unique perspective - on a walking tour through the labrynth of heated walkways that span a distance of some 40 blocks underneath the surface of the business district. For a deeper understanding of the city, we take the bus for an expert-led field trip to the Chicago History Museum. This institution houses 22 million historical artifacts and documents from Chicago and U.S. history, with an emphasis on five main areas: Living, Working and Governing in the Metropolitan Area, the Built Environment, and Individuals and Ideas. Gain a better understanding of Chicago’s past, its present, and prospects for the future.

Dinner: Enjoy a tasty farewell dinner at a neighborhood restaurant specializing in Italian cuisine.

Evening: At leisure. Share your favorite memories with new Road Scholar friends and prepare for departure tomorrow.

Lodging: Hilton Chicago

Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Day Six: Friday, January 16 - Breakfast/ Program Concludes
Note: Please note that hotel check-out is by 11am.

Breakfast: At the hotel.

Morning: We hope you enjoy Road Scholar learning adventures and look forward to having you on rewarding programs in the future. Please be in touch via the Road Scholar Social Network, where you can share memories, pictures, and comments. Best wishes for all your journeys!

Meals Included: Breakfast


Free Time Opportunities


Chicago, Illinois
General OverviewMuseums and galleries, sporting events, e.g., Museum of Science and Industry, Shedd Aquarium, Musuem of Contemporary Art, Stained Glass Museum, Adler Planetarium, Frank Lloyd Wright Architecture, Chicago White Sox, Chicago Cubs, Lincon Park Zoo, Navy Pier.
For additional information, visit: www.choosechicago.com

Important information about your itinerary:
Please know that while we do everything we can to finalize all aspects of our programs well in advance, there are logistics that occasionally must be altered. Our website will reflect the most recent information, and we are committed to providing you with final program details no later than eight weeks prior to the start of programs outside the U.S. and three weeks prior to the start of programs within the U.S. If you ever have questions about your program, please don't hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to assist you.

Our Value Promise To You

You won't find a better value.

Included
at no additional cost on this date ...
5 nights of accommodations
12 meals: 5 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 3 dinners
3 Expert-led lectures
11 Field trips

Ratings

4.8
Ratings are determined by participant evaluations.

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