Here’s hoping you have a good long layover at O’Hare or Midway International Airports coming up – and that you’re hungry when you land.
Both airports are participating in Chicago Restaurant Week with a special Airport Restaurant Week event running from January 30 – February 12, 2015.
50 restaurant at O’Hare and 20 at Midway will highlight their house specialties and feature dishes that are not regularly offered on the menu – such as Deep Dish CheeseCorn from Garrett Popcorn Shops (only at O’Hare!) and Chicken Kebobs at Midway’s Pegasus on the Fly.
In many spots there will also be discounts offered on certain menu items as well.
There’s a new art installation called “City Windows” at O’Hare International Airport that covers 15 windows and was created in traditional Chinese paper cut style. Look for it by Gate B19.
Created by artist Qiao Xiaoguang, Director of the Chinese Intangible Cultural Heritage Research Center at the Central Academy for Fine Arts in Beijing, the artwork depicts historic and contemporary landmarks in Chicago, such as the Navy Pier and the Willis Tower, and the Forbidden City and CCTV Tower in Beijing.
Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport is having a 50th Anniversary Celebration this week with a wide variety of special theme days, music, activities and – yay – discounts and free stuff for passengers.
Here’s a run-down.
Throughout the week, many concessions will be offering discounts and specials.
Monday, March 25 is Military Appreciation Day.
Military and cadet bands will perform in all terminals from 2 to 5 p.m and United Service Organizations of Illinois (USO) will staff tables in the domestic terminals to share information about O’Hare’s two USO centers for military personnel and their families.
Tuesday, March 26 is Family Day.
All terminals will have family-themed entertainment including jugglers, face painters, balloon twisters and clowns from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Children’s activity books will be distributed at food and beverage concessions all week long.
Wednesday, March 27 is O’Hare Employee Day.
There will be special treats for all the people who work at the airport and, for everyone, performances by Chicago Blues bands in all the terminals from 2 to 5 p.m.
Thursday, March 28 – Business Community Day.
For everyone who needs to take care of business while passing through the airport, there will be 30 minutes of free Wi-Fi via Boingo’s splash screen.
Jazz bands will perform in all the terminals from 2 to 5 p.m.
Friday, March 29 – Celebrate Chicago Day.
Choose Chicago reps will be handing out information about Chicago and there will be International music performances in all terminals from 2 to 5 p.m.
Eli’s Cheesecake Café will also roll out an an enormous cheesecake and offer free slices to passengers in Terminal 1 near Gate B9.
I’m not a big fan of spending a lot of money while traveling and certainly not a big fan of overpaying for things just because I’m away from home. So it’s always bugged me that any deals offered by “real-world” Starbucks never seem to be available in airports, where prices for even a cup of drip coffee can be quite a bit higher than out on the street.
So I’m pleased to see that from now through September 29th, 2009 airport Starbucks branches (which are operated by HMS Host) will be offering what they say is an airport-only deal:
If you buy a Starbucks drink at one airport in the morning – keep your receipt. When you arrive at another airport, you can use that receipt after 2 PM to buy any iced Grande drink for $2.
The offer is geared at promoting the Vivanno smoothies Starbucks is rolling out mid-July that will surely cost way more than $2, but you can use that receipt to knock down the price of other iced Grande drinks as well.
(I saved quite a few bucks when they were offering a similar deal last summer at neighborhood Starbucks by channeling the Five Easy Pieces Jack Nicholson and asking for an iced coffee, “but just hold the ice. And use hot coffee. Please.”
Now, what would go well with an afternoon coffee at an airport? The Chicago Airports have an idea:
The Taste of Chicagois in full swing now at Grant Park and runs through July 5th. If you don’t have the time or the inclination to join the crowds there, you can still get a taste of both the food and the music at Chicago’s O’Hare and Midway airports.
From now through Sunday, July 5, restaurants at both airports are offering specially-priced “Taste” portions. Both airports will also have live music in the terminals on July 2 and 5 from 2pm until 5 pm.
Performances at O’Hare will take place beyond the security checkpoints in each domestic terminal and in the Arrivals Level of International Terminal 5. Live music at Midway will take place in the Baggage Claim area.