by Benjamin Goodman
In the spirit of Thanksgiving—as we gather around the turkey and mashed potatoes to give thanks for what is ours—we count the many ways our sweet Chicago has made us proud.

We love the skyline views from Lincoln Park

Truth be told, we love the Chicago skyline from any angle, but there’s something about catching a glimpse from Lincoln Park that makes our hearts skip a beat. The South End Pavilion, an eco-conscious structure designed by Jeanne Gang, offers a particularly striking and cinematic view.
Photography by John Picken
We can drink locally—with pride

In terms of what we guzzle be it beer, gin, vodka, or coffee, Chicago drink-makers have us covered. For Chicago-made beer, you can’t go wrong at Revolution Brewing in Logan Square. Bow Truss and Dark Matter are our coffee roasters of choice—and for fine, locally made spirits, we turn to Koval and Letherbee.
Photography by Joselito Tagarao
We love the jaw-dropping architectural details

From Frank Lloyd Wright to the Tribune Tower to the homes dotting the edges of Wicker Park, we can’t help but be smitten by the good looks of our city.
Photography by John Picken
We’re spoiled with free outdoor music

In the summertime, there’s nothing sweeter than staking our territory on the lawn at the Pritzker Pavilion, and kicking back for an evening of free tunes. We’ve seen big names like She & Him, Andrew Bird, and Jonathan Richman—all while laying back and taking in the night sky with friends.
Photography by John Picken
We’re surrounded by nature

In a city that boasts one of the world’s tallest skyscrapers, we sure do know how to get back to nature. Between Lake Michigan, the conservatories in both Lincoln and Garfield Parks—and the city’s lush boulevards and parks, there’s no need to travel to soak up the restorative effects of the great outdoors.
Photography by Matt Howry
We’re art-lovers

We don’t mean to brag here (or do we?), but Chicago is home to world class art-makers. We’ve got Steppenwolf and The Goodman theaters, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, art galleries galore and one solid reading series after another—think 2nd Story and Reading Under the Influence. If it’s art you’re after, look no further than Chicago’s stages, galleries, and museums.
Photography by Ritchie Diesterheft
We know our comfort food

Let’s face it, there comes a time when everyone finds themselves seeking comfort at the bottom of a pizza pan. And when that time comes, there’s no better place to be than in the city of Chicago. From Gino’s East to Lou Malnati’s, Chicago knows how to serve up a slice that will fill a rumbling belly—and fix a sour mood.
Photography by G. Flinch
We can travel the world by L car

When we’re feeling a sense of wanderlust but can’t afford the price of a plane ticket, we can always make do with a quick trip on the CTA. Dinner on Devon Avenue promises a host of delectable Indian dishes, whereas Milwaukee Avenue in Portage Park serves up traditional Polish fare. Head south to Chinatown and Greek town, or veer west to Humboldt Park for a taste of Puerto Rico.
Photography by V. Xla
We love the four seasons

As the saying goes, if we’re not fond of the day’s weather, all we need do is wait a minute. The shorter, gray days of winter make for cozy nights spent indoors. Springtime is for celebrating, as we shed our bulky layers and delight in the abundant sunshine. Summertime means sundresses and outdoor festivals, and by the time autumn arrives, the shock of colored leaves and crisp fall air are a welcome reprieve.
Photography by Allan Henderson
We know how to laugh

With comedic troupes like the Second City, the Annoyance Theater, and the Neo-Futurists doling out laughs across the city, we’re hard-pressed to find a reason not to crack a smile. We’re especially grateful for funny Chicagoans when the weather takes a turn for the grim and gloomy.
Photography by Matt Laffy