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September 19th Be Talk Like A Pirate Day; So, Yo Ho Ho to Chicago!

photo courtesy FieldMuseum.org
photo courtesy FieldMuseum.org

A ‘Bottle ‘o rum’ to local mom, Susan Wilson for sharing some piratey adventures and some fall family activities in Chicago, too.

Chicago is a city that understands the arts and makes them available to as many people as possible for little or nothing. Free days rotate throughout the museum district. Typically these days are used by the school system for field trips. Chicagoans love their museums and their field trips, and CityPass encourages parents to participate in the knowledge of a field trip with their kids by returning to those museums for a longer look where exploration can be discovered together.

CityPass can make kids city-smart as well as book-smart. Give a child the chance to choose three postcards in the museum store, and armed with the museum map and their curiosity, they’ll set out to traverse the wide ranging art collections to find their picks on the walls. The information on the postcard back is just about all that’s necessary to know –who was the painter, who did they paint, what is going on in the painting, why is it so important that it is displayed here? After the treasure hunt, as promised, leave the museum no matter how much you, the parent want to linger. Mike Gallagher, our president, has told people this for years – “My wife was a teacher, and she taught me to spend about 45 minutes in a museum, and leave before the kids are ready. That way, they’ll always want to go back.”

A ride on public transportation in any city has out-dazzled anything inside a building for my children. Don’t miss the chance to travel like a local, squeezing into the train or trolley during rush hour. The metro ticket stub, map, CityPass booklet cover, museum postcards and family snaps all make a great props for a school essay or presentation. After that, the presentation grade mark and materials can do double duty in a scrapbook.

My pick for fall family activities in Chicago is The Field Museum’s Real Pirate exhibit on display through October 25th. Treasure, maps, weapons and everyday tools and supplies are on display along with a piece of The Whydah, a life-size replica, of the slave ship that sank off the coast of Cape Code nearly 300 years ago. This is a “touch me” exhibit. Kids can touch the gold coins brought up from the ocean floor, learn about the myths and truths of pirate life, sing pirate songs and even consider differences between the folklore of pirating and today’s modern pirates in the news. September 19th is national “Talk Like a Pirate Day”, and there are many Web sites that offer Pirate Translations. I used one to thank you for reading this post and hoping that the information is helpful:

Thanks ferrr takin’ th’ time t’ read me message in a bottle, and I hope ye come ‘cross me information helpful, and a bottle of rum!

(Susan Wilson is the Vice President of Public Relations for CityPass, Inc. and her two boys have seen a lot of museums.)

For more ideas on family activities in Chicago, read our post:  Downtown Chicago With Kids

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