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Chicago

Obscura Society IL: Preservationists vs. Developers

A 1.8 mile tour of the biggest battles in the century-long war to keep Chicago's lakefront "free, clear, and open."

As part of Atlas Obscura's Rivals Week, join us for a non-partisan walking tour through the biggest battles waged in the hundred years' war between developers and preservationists to keep Chicago's lakefront "free, clear, and open to the public". We'll cover topics from Aaron Montgomery Ward's crusade to keep the Field Museum out of Grant Park to the modern-day court battle that sent the Lucas Museum searching for other cities, as well as the many creative ways preservationists and developers have compromised.

Adventure Notes
This event will run rain or shine.

Is there an age limit for the tour? Nope, this tour is family friendly but parents have to keep an eye on their kids.

Where do we meet? The Michigan Ave side of Art Institute on the steps, look for me wearing Atlas Obscura shirt. 

How long is the walk? 1.8 miles, wear good shoes!

Is this ADA accessible? Limited access.

Is my ticket refundable? No, sorry kids, no money back on this purchase but you can transfer it by following this handy Eventbrite tutorial.

This tour will be hosted by Field Agent Charlie Vergos, a Chicago-based comedian with an abundance of curiosity and a short attention span. Though originally from Memphis, his series of day jobs as an architectural tour guide, double decker bus tour guide, deep dish pizza waiter, and graphics assistant at the Onion have given him a knowledge and understanding of Chicago that rivals most locals. He also has a lifetime watermelon eating contest record of 3-0-0. Charlie performs regularly all over the city and has been featured at the Laughing Skull Festival, Zanie's, the Paper Machete, Hell Yes Fest, the Memphis Comedy Festival, and the Crossroads Comedy Festival, among others. You can follow him on twitter at @CharlieVergos.

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The Atlas Obscura book is here! Inspiring equal parts wonder and wanderlust, “Atlas Obscura: An Explorer’s Guide to the World’s Hidden Wonders” celebrates more than 600 of the strangest and most curious places in the world. Pre-order and receive free enamel pin.