Amusement Park Fun

Ferris wheel

This is the time of year when I start thinking about packing up the family and heading to an amusement park. The lure of funnel cakes, roller coasters and log flume rides beckons me. Amusement parks have been around for centuries, with the oldest one, Dyrehausbakken—Bakken for short—located near Copenhagen in Denmark. Bakken began in […]

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Felting: A Beginner’s Guide

Source: inger maaike, Flickr

People have been felting for many centuries to add warmth and insulation. Although felting is still used for this, many people have taken to the craft for less utilitarian purposes. What exactly is felting? Felting is an ancient practice of matting, condensing and pressing fibers together. The most common fibers are wool or acrylic. How do […]

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Explore Afrofuturism!

Winter Constellations

I've always read science fiction, but at a young age I started looking for books and media that were more diverse. After all, Chicagoan Mae Jemison went into space, and I wanted to go, too! When I learned about the concept of Afrofuturism, loosely defined as the common themes in African-American science fiction, art and […]

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The 606 Revitalizes Bloomingdale Trail

The 606 trail

So The 606 opens on 06/06. What is The 606? Excellent question! Essentially, The 606 is a public space project, akin to Manhattan's High Line, centered around the Bloomingdale Trail. What is the Bloomingdale Trail? Again, a most excellent question! The Bloomingdale Trail is an elevated pedestrian and cyclist thoroughfare that runs along West Bloomingdale Avenue […]

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Adventure! 4 Books About Books

Book and Reader

Matthew Pearl has a new book out: The Last Bookaneer. Ostensibly an adventure tale about the last novel of Robert Louis Stevenson and set mostly in the South Pacific of the late 19th century, it is also about books both as artifacts and conveyors of ideas. A bookaneer, by the way, is someone willing to do shady […]

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Caught Reading: Red Line, June 2015

Source: moriza, Flickr

I caught you reading, Chicago, and I like your taste in books! I spied several intriguing book selections on the Red Line these past few days and from the looks of it, you are really enjoying these books. I saw someone with a well-loved copy of To Kill A Mockingbird. With the much anticipated publication […]

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Making Movies Is Hard

How to Make a Movie

Movies are fun. They have to be. They want your money. Making one, on the other hand, can be quite more difficult. That's why it's so entertaining to find out how a crowd of unrelated people pile together to set up pretty pictures on a screen. Pure Imagination is a genial retelling of the making of Willy Wonka and the […]

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Growing Native

Purple Coneflower

Despite being a big city, Chicago is home to many types of natural areas from prairie grasslands and woods to wetlands and dunes, and since the days of the renowned Jens Jensen, the city has had an interest in promoting native biodiversity. This means that throughout our parks and nature areas you can find plants native to our […]

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5 Books to Read After You Read “Reading Lolita in Tehran”

Iranian women 1a

While Azar Nafisi's Reading Lolita in Tehran has become a modern classic in its own right, there are plenty of other books detailing the lives of women in revolutionary Iran. For those not familiar with Nafisi's story, she was an English professor in Tehran who held private, secret seminars for a selected group of students on […]

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