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Chicago Events in 2019

This year is going to be amazing in Chicago! Of course, every year is stellar here, and we always look forward to enjoying more of what Chicago’s known for – great food, great beer, world-class attractions and museums, and friendly people. But here are some dates you’re going to want to know, so you don’t miss out on all the fun in 2019.

Year of Chicago Theatre, throughout 2019

The Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, along with the League of Chicago Theatres, have designated 2019 as the Year of Chicago Theatre. So, check for special events and theatrical performances for the public, located in neighborhoods around the city.

Chicago Restaurant Week, 1/25-2/7

Every year, some of the best restaurants in Chicago make it easy for you to go out and try new foods. Add a little excitement to these gloomy winter months by enjoying prix-fixe meal deals at one of the nearly 400 participating restaurants this year, including 100 new ones and 45 suburban ones. The First Bites Bash, an opening kickoff party, takes place on 1/24 at the Field Museum.

21st Annual Chicago Kids and Kites Festival, 5/4

Every year, this spring tradition lets kids enjoy making and flying kites with free kite building kits. Professional kite flying demonstrations, balloon artists, face painting, and the Big Kite Candy Drop take place as well. Come to Cricket Hill in Lincoln Park to join in the fun!

Chicago Memorial Day Parade and Wreath Laying Ceremony, 5/25

The city’s annual Memorial Day Parade honors those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of the U.S. The wreath-laying ceremony takes place before the parade at Daley Plaza.

4th Annual Chicago House Music Festival, Memorial Day Weekend

Chicago is the birthplace of house music, so it’s only fitting we have a festival to celebrate! Enjoy DJs and live performances all weekend at Millennium Park.

Chicago Riverwalk Summer Programming, late May-October

The 1.25-mile walk along the Chicago River will include programming all summer long, from fishing to evening fireworks. You must come and enjoy watching the boats, checking out vendors, and eating along this picturesque path.

34th Chicago Gospel Music Festival, 5/31-6/1

The gospel music scene has strong roots in Chicago, and this traditional free festival celebrates local and national artists who perform both traditional and contemporary gospel styles at Millennium Park.

36th Annual Chicago Blues Festival, 6/7-6/9

The past, present, and future of the blues is tied in with Chicago style, and this free festival is one of the summer’s most popular events. Expect more than 100 international and local artists to spotlight the genre’s contribution to culture.

Millennium Park Summer Music & Film Series, June-August

Enjoy free movies and concerts on the lawn at the Jay Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park. Bring a picnic with you, or buy from some of the area eateries. This is always a fun way to spend a summer night in Chicago! Schedule of events comes out later this year.

23rd Annual Chicago SummerDance, Wednesdays-Sundays from 6/27-8/24

This unique annual festival lets you take part in free, one-hour dance lessons with professionals, then join in on live music and dancing in Grant Parkimmediately after. Don’t miss out! The all0day 4th annual SummerDance celebration takes place on 8/24.

39th Annual Taste of Chicago, 7/10-7/14

taste of chicago

The free outdoor food festival is back to showcase Chicago’s diverse and awesome dining scene. There’s no cost to get in, but once here you’ll want to buy tickets that’ll net you both sample sizes and full-size meals. Cooking demos, free concerts, performances, arts, and activities are part of the excitement.

61st Annual Chicago Air & Water Show, 8/17-8/18

You’ll want to come to North Avenue Beach for this annual spectacle, bringing millions of viewers to the waterfront for flight aerobatics, water rescues, parachute teams, and historic aircraft.

41st Annual Chicago Jazz Festival, 8/23-9/1

The greatest jazz artists from Chicago and around the world come to perform at the free music festival, which this year features extended dates for more musical magic. Check the schedule later in the year to see who’s coming!

21st Annual World Music Festival Chicago, 10/13-10/29

The annual festival, which takes place in venues all around the city, features 50 artists that represent 20 countries and regions from around the world. Don’t miss out, if global grooves are your jam.

106th Annual Christmas Tree and Holiday Celebrations, November-December

Although the city hasn’t yet released a specific date for its annual tree lighting, you can expect tons of holiday excitement that includes caroling at Cloud Gate each Friday, the opening of the McCormick Tribune Ice Rink, and skating at the Maggie Daley Park Skating Ribbon.

Looking for local residential movers to get you in to or out of Chicago?

Call Elite Moving & Storage. We’re highly rated, safe movers that offer full service moving services year round. We know the city, and we know moving in Chicago. If you want the best moving company in Chicagoland, you want us! Call for a free estimate.

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How to House Hunt in Chicagoland From A Distance

In the market for a house in Chicago or its suburbs? Located hundreds or even thousands of miles away? If so, you might have to do some long-distance house hunting before you even think about moving to the Windy City. But house hunting from afar doesn’t have to be a problem, if you follow these tips from Elite Moving & Storage, the best movers on the North Shore.

Make a plan, and know what you want in a move to Chicago

It’s important while house hunting remotely to first know your needs and wants. Need a short commute time? Can you spend money and time on improvements if the carpeting and wall colors aren’t to your liking? Do you want to live in a more urban setting or a more low-key suburb with lots of green spaces? Know all these things before you start!

Make a list of requirements, and rate them by priority. Know how much you can spend; get your mortgage pre-approved, as that helps speed the process. Create checklists to help organize your thoughts. Do whatever you can to make sure you’re not wasting time.

But also, keep an open mind. When you’re moving to a new place, doing so can open up new possibilities you hadn’t considered yet.

Do your research about Chicago and your potential new home

The Internet is great for looking at houses – but there may be issues with accuracy. You might find a house on Zillow or Redfin, only to find when you call to schedule a showing that it’s already under contract. So how can you avoid such pitfalls when moving? The best way to start is by finding a good real estate agent.

Make sure your agent specializes in the area, and let the agent know what’s most important to you about your new city. Are you most interested in good schools? Crime rates? Area attractions? Something else? And make sure to let your agent know about your house needs, such as the number of bathrooms you can’t live without, the capacity of your garage, square footage of the house, and desired sizes of bedrooms.

Find Facebook groups in the area, and ask questions. Look at neighborhood crime rates. View Google Street View to discover aspects that don’t show up in an official for-sale listing. There are many ways you can check out your new location online, so use them!

Expect and plan for some travel to Chicago

Although you may not be able to come to Chicago for an extended period of time before you move here for good, you’ll still want to house hunt in person if at all possible. So, plan for a long weekend in a neighborhood or Chicago suburb you like (4-5 days is ideal).

Loop your realtor in to make sure all appointments are made for any property you like. Have an itinerary planned in advance. While you’re here, spend time in the city to get a feel for real life in the Chicago area. Find good restaurants, make sure there are playgrounds close by, walk the neighborhood. If you don’t find what you need, or decide to build a home, remember you may need to plan for last-minute travel to Chicagoland as well.

Skipping this step may mean you don’t get your new home properly! But if you take advantage of your time here, you’ll be more confident when it comes time to making your moving decisions – even if you’re in another state.

Then, hire the best moving company you can find! Elite Moving & Storage is here for you.

Moving long distances isn’t easy, and getting a dependable moving company can be the key to helping you settle in properly even if there’s a lot of travel involved. If you need long distance movers, hire Elite Moving & Storage for peace of mind. You have enough to deal with – let us handle the transportation of your precious belongings!

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5 Ways to Get Through A Chicago Winter 2018

The festival season in Chicago starts in May, with the opening of Chicago City Markets and the 20th annual Chicago Kids and Kites Festival on May 5, but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to do until then. This city always has something going on, even in the dead of winter!

2018 in Chicago has been designated the Year of Creative Youth, which means we’ll see city-wide programming focusing on opportunities for youth organizations throughout the year. We’ll also have great arts programming continually during 2018. Here are a few other events to look forward to during the first three months of this year.

1. Chicago Restaurant Week, January 26-February 8

Every year, 350+ Chicago (and suburban) restaurants create prix-fixe meal deals so that it’s as easy as possible to try new places for less money. From city favorites to trendy hotspots, the restaurants participating in Restaurant Week are showcasing their best! The event begins with the First Bites Bash preview party on January 25, and continues for two weeks. You might want to make reservations now for popular places. Visit the website to see who’s on the list this year.

2. Museum Free Days, through the end of February

This time of year can be relatively slow for museums, which means they’ll be offering free days for Illinois residents through the end of February. Adler Planetarium free days include January 3, 4, 7-12, 15-19, and February 2, 5-9, 19-22. Shedd Aquarium free days include January 15, 18, 19, 22-26, and February 2 and 14. The Field Museum of Natural History, which will be retiring Sue the T-Rex from the main hall in February, offers free days on January 3, 4, 15, 27, 28, and all of February. The Museum of Science and Industry is free Mondays-Thursdays through February 15, and also from February 20-22 and February 26-27. Brookfield Zoo in the suburbs is free Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays, and Sundays through February 28. Other museums also feature regular free days throughout the year. By the way, Chicago Museum Week takes place January 18-26, in case you’re looking for special events and tours, and deals on membership.

3. Chicago Theatre Week, February 8-18

Celebrate the world-class theatre scene in Chicago with opportunities to see more than 120 local productions at a discount. Tickets for this period of time cost $15 and $30, with discounts on sale starting January 9. Participating theaters include everyone from the Apollo Theater and the Auditorium Theatre to The Second City and Writers Theatre. See the Joffrey Ballet, experience Steppenwolf or Goodman or Chicago Shakespeare – it’s all available now! The event is being hosted by the League of Chicago Theatres.

4. Celebrate the Holidays!

Valentine’s Day, February 14, is a day when many restaurants offer special romantic meals, so check your favorite Chicago eatery to find out what it’s offering, whether it’s a heart-shaped pizza or a steak and wine dinner for two. Celebrate the Chinese Lunar New Year with a parade in Chinatown on February 25. Go downtown for the Dyeing of the Chicago River on March 17, followed by the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Celebrate Easter, which this year takes place on April 1, with brunch, Easter egg hunts, and more at local parks, zoos, and attractions.

5. Public Shows

Some high-profile trade shows come to the area during this season, and this is a great time to attend them. The Chicago Auto Show takes place February 10-19 at McCormick Place, showing off the latest trends in the world of cars. Other shows you might want to look at include the Chicago Travel & Adventure Show on February 10-11 at the DES Convention Center in Rosemont, The Orchid Show at the Chicago Botanic Garden on February 10-March 25, the giant Chicago Golf Show at the DES Convention Center on February 23-25, the Chicago Flower & Garden Show at Navy Pier on March 14-18. In April, C2E2, the giant comic book convention, comes to McCormick Place. For a calendar of shows at the DES Convention Center, click here. For a calendar of shows at McCormick Place, click here.

Elite Moving Knows Chicago!

We love this city, and we understand how it works. That makes moving in and out of this place a labor of love for us – and a breeze for you. If you want to know more about our operation and how we can help you, contact us and get an estimate today.

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10 Things to Do in Chicago This Holiday Season

Chicago has so much going on this time of year. Enjoy the festivities, which always remind us what a great city we live in, and how lucky we are at Elite Moving & Storage to have such proximity to amazing attractions!

1. The Magnificent Mile Lights Festival

This parade is pretty special. It starts off the holiday season here with a lineup of activities on Friday, November 17 and Saturday, November 18. At 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, the grand Tree-Lighting Parade goes down Michigan Avenue. Who does the honors? Why, Mickey and Minnie Mouse, of course – sprinkling Chicago with a little bit of Disney magic.

2. The McDonald’s Thanksgiving Parade

You may have seen this one on WGN. Every Thanksgiving morning, this exciting event along State Street includes regional high school marching bands, equestrian units, celebrities, performances, giant balloons, and floats. Expect over 5,000 participants, and hundreds of thousands of spectators lining the route.

3. Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony

The city’s 104th official Christmas tree lighting takes place in Millennium Park on Friday, November 17. The ceremony begins at 6 p.m. with holiday music from the Goodman Theatre’s “A Christmas Carol,” country trio Temecula Road, and the Oakdale Christian Academy Choir. This year’s tree is a 62-foot Norway Spruce with a 37-foot base!

4. Ice Skating at McCormick-Tribune Rink and Maggie Daley Park

Ice skating actually takes place all over the city during Chicago’s winters, but if you want a view of the city’s iconic skyline, you have two awesome options. The McCormick-Tribune rink is located right underneath the Bean (er, we mean Cloud Gate), which makes for some cool skating. The Maggie Daley Skating Ribbon (with treat vendors along the path) actually lets you do something other than skate in a circle. Both rinks are free, but skate rentals will cost you.

5. Chicago Trolley’s Holiday Lights Tour

Chicago Trolley and Double Decker Co. offers an evening tour during the season to show off the city’s festive light displays. The ride includes a free Sprinkles cupcake and just a couple of stops, at Chicago’s historic Christkindlmarket and ZooLights at Lincoln Park Zoo. Even those of us who live here learn from the company’s knowledgeable guides, so don’t miss this!

6. Fifth Third Bank Winter Wonderfest at Navy Pier

The 17th annual holiday event is an indoor winter playground at one of the city’s biggest tourist spots. You can enjoy rides, giant slides, holiday decor, and the Chicago Blackhawks Ice Skating Rink. While you’re at Navy Pier, enjoy some great dining, visit the Chicago Children’s Museum, or take in an IMAX movie!

7. The Park at Wrigley

Wrigley Field is an enchanted place no matter the time of year, but this season it’s upping its game with holiday festivities at the new Park at Wrigley. The Park will have its own Christkindlmarket, starting November 24, and will also open an ice skating rink ($5 admission for 13 and up, plus skate rentals). A tree lighting ceremony takes place from 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday, November 28, and then Santa’s Workshop opens. We love this new addition to Chicago holidays!

8. Visiting Chicago Museums

Museums are a no-brainer because they’re warm and fun no matter when you go. This is your last chance to see Sue the T-Rex in the main hall at the Field Museum, before she’s moved upstairs next year to make room for a new dinosaur addition. “Jurassic World: The Exhibition” and “Ancient Mediterranean Cultures in Contact” are also there right now. Also, the Museum of Science and Industry’s “Christmas Around the World and Holidays of Light” exhibit is a long-time city tradition. The Art Institute will wreathe its lions for the 25th year running on November 24, starting at 10 a.m. with a presentation including “Hamilton” cast members and the Soul Children of Chicago.
 Also going on around Chicago during the holidays: the Museum of Contemporary Art‘s 50th anniversary exhibit “We Are Here”; the Shedd Aquarium’s “Washed Ashore,” which features life-sized animal sculptures made from ocean trash; and the Chicago History Museum’s “Race: Are We So Different?”

9. Shopping Downtown!

Locals tend to shop on State Street, and tourists tend to shop on the Mag Mile – or so we hear, although we frequent both whenever we can! Wait for a table around the giant Christmas tree in the Walnut Room in Macy’s to enjoy one of the treats of the season, or just check out the decorated windows from the outside. Whether you prefer walking into high-end stores or getting great deals on gifts, downtown Chicago has it.

10. Theatre

As you may know, Chicago is a city that loves live performances, and around the holidays we have a few can’t-miss shows – including the Joffrey Ballet’s “The Nutcracker,” and the Goodman Theatre’s “A Christmas Carol.” At the Lyric Opera, “Die Walkure” of Wagner’s the Ring Cycle is playing throughout November. At the Cadillac Palace Theatre, “Irving Berlin’s White Christmas” runs too! And we have tons of smaller theaters that deserve a look as well. 

For example, the House Theatre‘s non-ballet interpretation of the Nutcracker is always fun. For a list of holiday-themed theater events, visit TimeOut Chicago.

Chicago Holiday Style Is Here!

At Elite Moving & Storage, we are passionate about and proud of our city, and we know it well. As a local moving company, we value diversity and dependability in ourselves and others. How can we assist you with your moving and storage needs this winter? Contact us so we can help you!