Instead of doing another full post on my trip to Oktoberfest, I think I will let my story over on exposure.co do the talking. I wrote that soon after returning from Germany when my feelings and memories were fresh, so it is definitely the most accurate representation of what went down and how it affected me. It was the trip of a lifetime, and definitely something I will always remember.

The full story is embedded below if you'd prefer not to link over. Thank you for reading. I have also posted the full set of photos over on Flickr.

Drinks in Logan Square

I visited the Milwaukee Avenue Art Fest in Logan Square last weekend with Lisa, Elena, and Andrew. Times were good, as usual, but we definitely concentrated less on the "art" section and more on the "fest" section in case you hadn't noticed. We followed up with some killer cocktails at Longman & Eagle just in time for the skies to open up and douse the area with a flash thunderstorm. The sun broke through again at the perfect time, just as we were finishing our second round, and we decided to make one more stop at Revolution Brewery where we ran into some friendly staff, good food, better beer, and some super huge hipster a-holes!

Willis (Sears) Tower Skydeck

Made a visit here on a whim... I haven't been up here in probably 25 years or more. It doesn't matter how old you are though— it's still amazing. If you don't mind spending $19 for an elevator ride, I'd definitely recommend it as there are only a few places in the world to get this kind of vantage point.

FYI I didn't, and will never, ever, step out on the transparent death ledge.

Snapshots from Grand Rapids


Chicago's Lincoln Park Zoo

One of my favorite things to do in the spring and summer is visit Lincoln Park Zoo on Chicago's north side. The gates to the zoo open at 7AM and I usually try to sneak in there before work (before the "official" opening at 9AM). If you can make it in that window, there are very few people around, allowing for plenty of peaceful browsing and walks around the zoo grounds, pond, and nature boardwalk areas. You'll also beat the loud crowds and mid-day heat, so the animals are much more likely to be out and about. Be aware that the vending, cafe, and indoor animal viewing areas will not be accessible until the official open.

The best part about Lincoln Park Zoo is that it is FREE to enter — for anyone. You wouldn't assume this from the quality, however. The exhibits and enclosures are large and clean. The grounds are gorgeous and well maintained, with flowers and foliage filling any empty areas. The staff is quite friendly and very knowledgable. The zoo offers plenty of information on the animals, upcoming exhibits, etc. and offers many programs and events to engage the public, children and adults alike.

Soon the zoo will unveil a large new exhibit that has been under construction (near the Kovler sea lion pool) for some time. The Regenstein Macaque Forest will open in Fall, 2014 and promises to be a natural and state-of-the-art facility for the Japanese primate. I'm looking forward to visiting again when it launches!