The Chicago Bears are one of the most iconic sports teams in the world, and along with the Cardinals franchise, they are the oldest team still playing in the NFL. They started as the Decatur Staleys in 1920, moved to Chicago as the Staleys in 1921, and finally became the Bears in 1922 when team owner George Halas changed the name as a nod to the Chicago Cubs (Bears are bigger than Cubs). The city of Chicago needs to be on everyone’s bucket list for its many museums, attractions, tours, stores, and of course the food.
What to Eat
Billy Goat Tavern
The Curse of the Billy Goat may be finally over with the Cubs winning the World Series, but you can still head over to the Billy Goat Tavern for a flavor of Chicago’s history, both with your taste buds and with the city inspired decor and attitude. It’s more than just “Cheezborger! Cheezborger! Cheezborger!” as they serve breakfast, lunch, dinner, plus adult beverages, so come for the food and drinks but hang out for the atmosphere.
Chicago is known for its deep dish pizza, so any visitor to the city needs to partake in the deliciousness of a pie that is best served right from the oven. There are certainly plenty of deep dish pizza options in the city, but Pizzeria Uno is the original that started it all, and if deep dish isn’t your thing they have thin crust too, as well as fantastic burgers, pasta dishes, steak, and more.
Biggest tourist attraction
Navy Pier is a must-see for every new visitor to Chicago as it has so many things packed into one space. There are some rides to enjoy, sightseeing cruises that take you through the city on the Chicago RIver or around it on Lake Michigan, there are plenty of stores to shop at with a Chicago flair, and the food/drink options are distinctively Chicago.
Under the radar attraction
The Fulton Market District has a little something for everyone, with several shops, restaurants, and nightlife options, but if you want to make a day of it here’s one suggestion. Visitors to the city can stay at the Ace Hotel, sightsee a bit at the many places to check out in Chicago, then head over to the Punch Bowl Social for some fun games, take in dinner at Swift & Sons (a classic Chicago steakhouse with a modern twist), then do cocktails at Tony’s Rooftop Bar.
Game day experience
There are plenty of options for getting to Soldier Field, but public transportation and/or Uber is the best way to go. Some parking lots require a long walk to the stadium, while others have a shuttle service available. Tailgating is allowed before the game and after the game, but there are specific guidelines to follow. Be sure to hit up the team’s website for all their policies and procedures, as well as the latest on parking, and as always be sure you give yourself plenty of time to make it to your seats before kickoff. Once inside grab yourself a classic Chicago style hot dog, an Italian beef, or a Polish sausage.