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Squirrely Summertime Chicago Bucket List Adventures

In this post: Full Moon Fire Jam, Green City Farmer’s Market and the Chicago Mural

Ahhh, I sure do love getting to head off to some adventures on my own! If it’s one thing I notice it’s that whenever I head to something by myself I always meet the most amazing people somehow. It’s like it’s by divine design that certain people are placed in my path and something amazing transpires from it. This is exactly what happened on my adventure to Foster Avenue beach for the Full Moon Fire Jam last month!

Full Moon Fire Jam – Foster Avenue 

I’ll be completely honest (I always am you know), I had no idea what to expect when I was going to this. Like zero. I had literally learned about the Fire Jam from a Chicago Bucket List Instagram handle and I went hmmmm, that sounds like it could be fun! As the name implies, the jam happens on the full moons May through October. This event gets put on by the Chicago Park District and is associated with the Burning Man movement (which is the piece that intimidated me just a little bit, just because I was so unfamiliar with the intricacies of what that particular event is all about). You can read more info on their website here According to the site, “The Full Moon Jams’ unite performing artists and spectators through a love and appreciation of fire art. Encompassing myriad performance styles and tools, fire dancers from the greater Chicago area and Great Lakes share their creative gifts by the shore of Lake Michigan, set to the percussive beats of local musicians, in this unique and free to the public monthly event taking place through Spring and into Fall.” Sounded pretty cool! I got there decently early to make sure I didn’t have to park on the other side of the city and hoof it, but to my surprise there was plenty of parking (always a hot commodity when you’re talking about Chicago). I had joined some Chicago Burning Man pages on Facebook to try to get a feel for what to expect at the jam and the gist I kept getting was to bring a blanket and a great attitude and watch the fire dancers. Cool, I can totally handle that! As luck would have it I made a friend on the walk to the jam, so she and I sat together for the event. Off on the other side of the roped off area for the fire dancers was a large gathering of people playing music (mostly drums it seemed) together and everyone was just dancing and having a good ‘ol time. The sounds in the background were really great, and it just seemed like a large community of people all gathered together to watch some incredible performers do their thing. What was even cooler was seeing the line of people who were waiting their turn to head out into the grassy area to strut their firey goodness with all kinds of different tools in tow – I saw everything from what looked like the normal sticks fire-breathers (and swallowers!) use to claws to a large barbell with spikes on the ends to a sword, all lit on fire and the people dancing with them just as carefree as can be. At any given time there were at least 4 people in the grass doing their fire dancing routines. So cool! One of the coolest things I saw the whole night was a girl dressed up as a fairy, full on light up wings and all, dancing throughout the crowd circle that was gathered around the fire dancers. I wish I had been able to get a shot of the moon that night as it was the pink full moon, and it was so beautiful hanging over the lakeshore before the sun completely set. Check out a short video of the fire dancers here! One thing to know about this location is the bathrooms are extremely far away, so watch your liquid consumption unless you brought a bike or skateboard to make the trip a little shorter.

Green Street Market (Lincoln Park) and the Chicago Mural

This girl loves her farmers markets. Sadly, I don’t get to them as often as I’d like to with, you know, busy schedules and all. What I do like to do though is check out a farmer’s market and see which vendors I absolutely love because there’s quite a few vendors that are just kind of “fluff” to me and don’t have anything I need or want. I had heard there was a really large farmer’s market in the city that was suppose to be so super amazing, Green City Farmer’s Market, and since it was in the city it had to be great, right? On my summertime bucket list it went! My neighbor Jakara is one of my best wandering buddies, that girl is always up for an adventure, so I invited her to come to the city with me one Saturday to check out the farmer’s market for the first time. As with many Chicago spots, parking was limited in this area of Lincoln Park (shocker!), but if Jakara didn’t squeeze her little car in a spot, parallel parking like a badass! Thank God she drove and not me, we’d be spinning around blocks looking for a normal pull-in type parking spot, cause this girl can’t parallel park to save her life. When we got to the market I was of course super excited, I mean whoever puts me in a park filled with food vendors is a God to me. We decided to do a lap around all the tents to see what there was and while there was lots and lots of produce vendors (something I gripe about not having enough of at our local markets), I noticed that there wasn’t a ton of organic produce vendors. That was a little bit of a bummer. There were some, more than what we have at our local market, but for a big market in Chicago I honestly kind of expected more organic options. For a girl like me who only buys organic unless I absolutely don’t have another option, that was kind of a big deal. There were your normal vendors with bread and some meats and eggs, the one thing I will say about this market is the “fluff” vendors were at a minimum – everyone is different, but when I go to a market I really want the produce and the meats and things, and not so much the baked goods (though they always look amazing!) and jams and all that. I feel like if I was having guests over for a meal I’d be more inclined to buy that kind of stuff, but since it’s just me, all those things are just temptation for me to eat things I shouldn’t haha =) They do say on their website though that all vendors use humane and sustainable practices, so if anything, even if it isn’t technically organic it’s still better than conventional farming in my book! The market is definitely worth a trip to go see if it tickles your fancy! It’s open every Wednesday and Saturday, you can check them out on their website here.  After we had enough farmering, we did a little more research over sushi on where to go wandering to next. Obviously there had to be more to see where we were than just the farmer’s market. Jakara had found that there was a Greetings From Chicago mural painted on a wall not far from where we were, it looked and sounded like something we needed to see, so off we went to go check out this mural. I can’t believe someone painted it, I feel like I say that about a lot of Chicago art – have you ever driven off some of the Lake Shore Drive exits to see the mosaic murals that are there?! Sooooo beautiful. I loved all the details that really gave you a glimpse of all the things that make Chicago, well, Chicago. If you want to check out this mural, head over to 2226 N. Milwaukee Ave! My next city play-date is heading over to Chinatown and Pilsen for some Chinese food, tacos and taking the watertaxi!! I can’t wait! Stay tuned for those adventures!  [/et_pb_text][/et_pb_column][/et_pb_row][/et_pb_section]

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