Here Are Our Recommendations for Enjoying the Windy City
ProMat 2023 is right around the corner. The event itself will offer attendees plenty to do during its four-day run March 20-23, with thousands of exhibitors and more than 100 presentations. But outside of the McCormick Place trade show venue, Chicago boasts endless opportunities for visitors to enhance their days in the city.
Whether your interests are live music, dining, night life, architecture or museums and galleries, Chicago has it all within minutes from McCormick Place.
Fine dining? Six of the city’s restaurants are finalists for the prestigious James Beard Awards.
Museums? Catch the “First Kings of Europe” exhibit at the nearby Field Museum, or “Pompeii,” also nearby at the Museum of Science and Industry. Numerous other Chicago museums are close by.
Night life? How about the House of Blues Chicago with shows and dining.
Architecture? Downtown Chicago has a treasure trove of architectural gems. You can see it all from above by heading up the Skydeck on the 103rd Floor of the Willis (but really, we still all call it the Sears) Tower.
Craft beer? Chicago has more craft breweries than any other city in the U.S.
Shopping? The “Magnificent Mile” is a 13-block stretch of Michigan Avenue with hundreds of stores.
Downtown Chicago is just a quick taxi, ride-share, or public transit ride from McCormick Place.
If you plan to head out and about while at ProMat, remember Chicago is the “Windy City.” A cool day can feel cold, and March weather can be cool and rainy or sunny and warm. Be prepared.
As Chicago is just across the border from our headquarters state of Wisconsin, Steel King personnel have their own recommendations of favorite spots to visit, dine or enjoy nightlife.
Steel King Central Region Sales Manager Kurt Larson, an Illinois native, loves Chicago sports teams – especially the Chicago Bulls. “I like visiting Chicago because I was born in Rockford, Illinois and love all the Chicago sports teams, especially the Michael Jordon Bulls.” The Bulls (sorry, without MJ) will host the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday, March 22 at the United Center. The Blackhawks hockey team will be away.
For Ryan Wachmuth, Steel King’s Dynamic Storage Sales Manager, Chicago has something for everyone. “There are too many things to like about Chicago to detail, Wachsmuth said. “From Broadway plays, steak dinners, shopping, museums and more, you’ll find something to suit your interests.”
Of all there is to do and see, here’s what we recommend:
- Dinner Restaurant: Smith & Wollensky
- Lunch Spot: Wildberry Pancakes & Café (breakfast/lunch)
- Tavern: Streeter’s Tavern
- Chicago Style Pizza Restaurant: Gino’s East (Downtown only)
- Chicago Style Hot Dog Restaurant or Cart: Fat Jonnies Famous Red Hots
- Night Life Spot: Rush & Division Street Area
- Museum: Museum of Science & Industry
- A Don’t-Miss Landmark or Building: Wrigley Field, hands down! (Tours are available)
- Best Skyscraper Observation Deck:
- Other Attraction: Wrigley Field to watch the Cubs
- Best Way to Get Around Town: Taxi
- Dinner Restaurant: Gibson’s Bar and Steakhouse. The atmosphere was fun, the drinks were smooth, and the food was delicious.
- Lunch Spot: Manny’s Cafeteria & Deli. The Corned Beef Sandwich was great, if I was hungry enough, two would have been ordered.
- Tavern: Dueling Pianos is a great interactive bar, good times had by all when we last went.
- Chicago Style Pizza Restaurant: We always hit Gino’s on the Magnificent Mile. Busy, but a cool place to eat with pretty darn good pizza.
- Chicago Style Hot Dog Restaurant or Cart: Weiner’s Circle was fun, and you leave in tears of laughter. It is no-holds bar of insults thrown at you.
- Night Life Spot: Buddy Guys by far stands out for me. I love blues and could listen to it all night long, which we have done. On one occasion I met Buddy.
- Museum: As a family we hit all sorts of museums on one trip, from Shedd Aquarium, Field Museum of Natural History, to the Art Institute. My advice, hit them all.
- A Don’t-Miss Landmark or Building: Millennium Park, in the summer is the best, but very cool in the winter with the ice skating rink and Christmas lights everywhere.
- Best Skyscraper Observation Deck: 360 Chicago observation, where you position yourself against the window, hold onto the handle, cause the tilt you out so most of your body is looking out over the streets from 100 stories up.
- Other Attraction: The Art Institute of Chicago. I was able to see “Whistler’s Mother” painting that was on loan from Paris.
- Best Way to Get Around Town: Uber.