I met up with Charlotte (yes, THAT Charlotte*) and Jade last Wednesday afternoon to do a bit of exploring and take advantage of the free tour that the Cultural Center offers three times per week. (Wednesday, Friday and Saturdays @ 1:15)
We arrived a little bit early and were able to catch the end of the weekly free concert as well as a healthy helping of stink eye from one of the concert's "quiet patrol".
Once the performance ended, we made our way back downstairs to join the tour. It was an afternoon full of oohing and ahhing at the building and its history (and pretty consistent giggling at our unintentionally funny tour guide). Lest you get the wrong idea, she was definitely informative. But she also might have said things like, "I couldn't care less."
Nicknamed the People's Palace, in 1991 the old Chicago Public Library building and a Civil War Memorial were united to create the Cultural Center. Over the past 20 years it has played host to numerous free public events (art exhibits, concerts, film screenings) and is one of the most visited attractions in Chicago.
The building's two stunning domes, intricate mosaics, and vast array of iron and marble work make it a feast for the eye and a photographer's dream.
* I would like to state for the record that after several years of an "online" friendship with Charlotte, Wednesday's official meet up was just as delightful as I hoped it would be. Charlotte is as funny and smart and engaging and lovely as I imagined her to be. I'm looking forward to lots more visits now that we're practically neighbors! Plus, I got to meet another new friend, Jade, in the process. Raise your hand if you're feeling incredibly fortunate. (I have both hands raised right now.)