Here’s your plan for the rest of the winter in one blog post

It’s February. If you’re still whining about the cold, then you’re not a real Chicagoan and its time for you to leave this city.

The travel season has died down, so plane tickets to Florida are about $100. Pawn that TV you’re spending your winter watching and go soak up some sun. See ya.
Anyone still here?

Ok cool.

Here’s your plan for the next month.

Go see a movie

But not one at AMC or Regal. Be cool and hit up one of the city’s mid-run venues like The Logan Theater or the Brew & View at The Vic. It’s about half the price and they both sell booze so you don’t have to sneak in your own.

Free museum days

Yea, we have some of the highest tax rates in the country, but at least IL residents get free entry to most of the museums on even number days of months that end in “Y” or something like that. Not sure how it works, and it changes every few months. The most up to date lists are here and here.

Other cool, free stuff

waterfall Garfield Park Conservatory free ChicagoExample: stop by one of the conservatories. The Garfield Park Conservatory or the Lincoln Park Conservatory is filled with palm trees and ferns, tropical plants, waterfalls. It’ll have you forgetting that it looks like Hoth outside and make you feel like you’re back on Endor.

Sign up for a gym

But don’t go to Xsport or Lifetime Fitness or any other chain for that matter. Those are all scams. Sign up for a real gym, it’ll be cheaper. Try finding a park district facility, YMCA, or your neighborhood gym. Generally, if there is an excessive amount of Arnold Schwarzenegger pictures on the wall and an extremely disproportionate dude-to-chick ratio, then you’re in the right place.

Alright, well that’s pretty much my go-to winter bucket list. Is there anything I’m missing? Post your suggestions below and I’ll throw ’em in here.


  1. For movies also check out The Patio and The Portage. No booze but definitely worth the trip to see these old time renovated theatres.

    Also sign up for a 5K — yes it’s cold and icy but it’s a great way to avoid cabin fever and meet new friends. Skip the Shamrock Shuffle, everyone does that one and sign up for one of the newer ones.

    • chicagoranter says:

      Thanks for the comment Icarus, I definitely gotta look into that. Which one of the newer ones do you recommend? I was also thinking about the Polar Bear Plunge, but I think we already missed that one.


  1. […] Free/cheap things to do to pass the winter in Chicago Monday morning fodder from my blog. Here's some things I like to do on the cheap to get through the Chicago winter. Anyone tried any of this? Am I missing anything? Your plan for the rest of the winter in one blog post -Chicago Rants […]

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