Art Institute
The Art Institute
111 S Michigan Ave, Chicago
(312) 443-3600
museum’s website
The Art Institute of Chicago, founded in 1879 as both a museum and school, first stood on the southwest corner of State and Monroe Streets. It opened on its present site at Michigan Avenue and Adams Street in 1893. Built on rubble from the 1871 Chicago fire, the museum housed a collection of plaster casts and had a visionary purpose: to acquire and exhibit art of all kinds and to conduct programs of education. The collection now encompasses more than 5,000 years of human expression from cultures around the world, and the school’s graduate program is continually ranked as one of the best in the country. Within the next decade, a new complex will continue this process of growth.
Chicago Museums
The Field Museum
1400 S Lake Shore Drive, Chicago
(312) 922-9410
museum’s website
Chicago Museums are world class, and the Field Museum is part of that distinction. The Field Museum was incorporated in the State of Illinois on September 16, 1893 as the Columbian Museum of Chicago with its purpose the “accumulation and dissemination of knowledge, and the preservation and exhibition of objects illustrating art, archaeology, science and history.” In 1905, the Museum’s name was changed to Field Museum of Natural History to honor the Museum’s first major benefactor, Marshall Field, and to better reflect its focus on the natural sciences. In 1921 the Museum moved from its original location in Jackson Park to its present site on Chicago Park District property near downtown where it is part of a lakefront Museum Campus.
Chicago Museums
Shedd Aquarium
1200 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago
(312) 939-2438
museum’s website
In the spirit of “build it, and they will come,” Shedd made a $2 million gift to get things going. He would add another $1 million to make sure his aquarium would be just as grand as the two museums already in Grant Park: the Art Institute of Chicago and the Field Museum. Shedd’s colleagues rallied behind him. They formed the Shedd Aquarium Society in 1924 and asked the Chicago Park District for use of the area created by landfill at Roosevelt Road and the lakefront. This site was in keeping with architect Daniel Burnham’s visionary Plan of Chicago, which called for the city’s cultural institutions to be located in parks.
Chicago Museums
Adler Planetarium
1300 S Lake Shore Drive, Chicago
(312) 922-7827
museum’s website
The Adler Planetarium — America’s First Planetarium — was founded in 1930 by Chicago business leader Max Adler. The museum is home to three full-size theaters, extensive space science exhibitions, and one of the world’s most important antique astronomical instrument collections on display. The Adler is a recognized leader in science education, with a focus on inspiring young people, particularly women and minorities, to pursue careers in science.
Chicago Museums
Chicago Children’s Museum
700 East Grand Avenue, at Navy Pier, Chicago
(312) 527-1000
museum’s website
Chicago Children’s Museum is a place where families and caregivers with infants and children are encouraged to create, explore, and discover together through play. The museum features three vibrant floors of exhibits and activities that provide sensory experiences and engaging educational content focusing on literacy, science, math, visual and performing arts, and health.
Chicago Museums
Museum of Contemporary Art
220 E Chicago Ave, Chicago
(312) 280-2660
museum’s website
One of the nation’s largest facilities devoted to the art of our time, the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) offers exhibitions of the most thought-provoking art created since 1945. The MCA documents contemporary visual culture through painting, sculpture, photography, video and film, and performance. Located in the heart of downtown Chicago, the MCA boasts a gift store, bookstore, restaurant, 300-seat theater, and a terraced sculpture garden with a great view of Lake Michigan.
Museum of Broadcast Communications
360 N State Street, Chicago
(312) 245-8200
museum’s website
The mission of the Museum of Broadcast Communications (MBC) is to collect, preserve, and present historic and contemporary radio and television content as well as educate, inform, and entertain the public through its archives, public programs, screenings, exhibits, publications and online access to its resources.
The MBC is an Illinois non-profit corporation that owns and manages two subsidiaries, Museum.TV and the National Radio Hall of Fame (NRHOF) and its website radiohof.org.
Chicago Museums
Chicago History Museum
1601 N. Clark Street, Chicago
(312) 642-4600
museum’s website
The Chicago History Museum stands at the crossroads of America’s past and its future. If you live in Chicago or visit here and are curious about the city’s past, present, and future, the Museum should be your first stop. The Museum cares for, showcases, and interprets millions of authentic pieces of Chicago and U.S. history. Our ability to illuminate the past is a reminder of what really happened once upon a time, sheds light on the present, and compellingly informs the future.
Chicago Museums
Museum of Science and Industry
57th Street and Lake Shore Drive, Chicago
(773) 684-1414
museum’s website
The Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago (MSI), the largest science center in the Western Hemisphere, is home to more than 35,000 artifacts and nearly 14 acres of hands-on experiences designed to spark scientific inquiry and creativity. Since opening our doors in 1933, we’ve welcomed more than 175 million guests from around the world. Our mission, to inspire the inventive genius in everyone by presenting captivating and compelling experiences that are real and educational, is realized through world-class exhibits such as: Science Storms, the newest permanent exhibit revealing the science behind some of nature’s most powerful phenomena; YOU! The Experience, an exhibit that lets you explore what it means to live a vital, healthy life in the 21st century; and the U-505 Submarine, the only German U-boat in the United States.

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