Smiling faces, brilliant sun, and humidity like you never stepped out of the shower—summertime CHI is here, and we’re not mad about it! To kick off this beautiful, sunshiny season, we took to the streets in search of our perfect Chicago-summer day. For those of you living in our fair city, you won’t be surprised we started with coffee then biked, boarded, and walked our way to dreamy picnic magic, food, and finally, a boozy afternoon of shuffleboard fun. That’s what we consider a solid summer recipe: soaking in vitamin D, moving while we feel motivated, and exploring our glorious city. Follow along for our checklist of Chicago summer adventure must-haves and must-dos.
Before heading out, we gathered our gear and dressed for the dreamy weather. Tees with prints to rival the street art? Check. We were inspired to explore by this mural on the walk-up coffee bar at Ipsento Coffee just off the 606.
Before we hit the trail, we filled our travel mugs with delicious, well crafted coffee and picked our ideal picnic spot in the shade of the Blue Line. You don’t have to be a picnic pro to enjoy the fine art of a thoughtfully arranged spread. Start with the basics: a funky, yet durable, woven blanket for dry seating; water bottles to hydrate; shades, sunscreen, and hats for UV protection; lightweight, summer-inspired tees; a cooler or basket with snacks like homemade trail mix, fruit, and simple sandwiches; and a boom box for beats.
We packed up and made our way on what was once the Bloomingdale Line—walking, biking, boarding, and jamming. Bags of all kinds are welcome on our summer trips: drawstrings, backpacks, and totes. Whatever’s easy for packing and light to carry, because we had ground to cover. We followed the elevated path to our next summer spot, one we go to when the midday sun has long since peaked and it’s time to settle into patio magic.
Memories made and captured, we headed to the Lido Deck of the Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club on Milwaukee. It’s a prime place to enjoy a chilled beverage and kick back on a patio, basking in the long, glorious dusk. Play a little shuffleboard while a DJ spins relaxing tunes and the Chicago skyline waxes metallic to neon sunset. Summer adventures in the city we love? Check.
Doting on my house plants is how I fill my time when I’m not writing, reading, running or playing with my darling cats, Evelyn and Charlie. In a past life, if any of us live more than once, I might have been a French poet or horticulturalist. Powered by: beautiful cake, morning sunlight and black coffee.