5 Things Out-of-Towners Need to Know About Chicago
Whether you’re a Chicago native or a transplant, you probably have a special place in your heart for this city. When you’ve lived here so long, there are certain lessons you pick up along the way. You know the best places to eat, how to navigate the L, and the best places in Grant Park. But here are some things out-of-towners need to know about Chicago when moving here.
The Origin of the “Windy City”
Everyone knows Chicago is called the “Windy City,” and yes, it does get pretty windy (sometimes it’s just pointless to have an umbrella when it’s raining). While there are many theories as to the origin of the name, the most popular is that the nickname comes from a New York Sun editorial published around 1893 that described Chicago as the “Windy City” because of its politicians being long-winded and full of hot air.
The Weather Is Always a Talking Point
Complaining about the weather is the way Chicagoans bond, and we have the right to do so. It’s not strange to experience all four seasons in a single Chicago day.But even though we may complain, we know it’s all worth it for the amazing city we live in and the great summers!
Being Fast-Paced is a Lifestyle
Chicagoans say they can spot a tourist when they see someone walking slow and looking up at the tall buildings. Well, we admit, they are something amazing to look at. But just know that Chicagoans aren’t trying to be rude when they zoom past you, they’re just used to a faster pace.
Remember the Grid System
It’s hard to get lost in Chicago once you learn a few tricks. Chicago was built on a grid system that you need to figure out when living here. Here are some tips:
1) Know that the going toward the Lake means you’re traveling East.
2) The center of the grid system is in the heart of the loop at the intersection of State Street and Madison Street.
3) All the addresses on east-west streets and north-south streets are labeled as such on the street signs. East-west streets fall either east or west of State Street, north-south fall north or south of Madison street.
4) Odd-numbered addresses are on south and east sides of streets, and even-numbered addresses are on north and west sides of the street.
5) The addresses increase or decrease depending on their distance from the State and Madison street intersection.
While those tips may not seem easy to digest at first glance, we promise when you start navigating streets sans GPS, you’ll learn in no time.
Chicagoans Still Call it the Sears Tower
While visiting the second-tallest building in the U.S. is something you’ll be doing often when family is in town, know that Chicagoans still refer to it as the Sears Tower. Many were offended when the name was changed to the Willis Tower in 2009, and chose not to acknowledge the new name.
Chicagoans may be particular about their verbiage and walking pace, but they don’t mind showing you the ropes so you can pass down the Chicagoan knowledge.
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