Ever since seeing the opening credits to Married with Children when I was younger, I always wanted to visit and experience Chicago. More specific, I always loved the opening scene of Buckingham Fountain.
The fountain, one of the largest fountains in the world, is located at Columbus Drive and Congress Parkway in Grant Park. Though I was there a bit too early to see it flowing, the fountain will flow from now until October, 8:00 a.m. to 10:45 a.m.
I will have to make it back when the fountain is turned on; however, even when it is off, it is breathtaking. Of course, seeing the jets shoot water over 150 feet into the air will make it even more so I am sure.
Did you know that after the sun goes down the fountain puts on a show set to lights and music? I just learned this, and cannot wait to see it. The show runs for 20 minutes every hour on the hour.
The Clarence F. Buckingham Memorial Fountain, as it is officially called, opened on May 26, 1927. The fountain was designed to be a central non-obtrusive focal point of Grant Park.
In my geeking out, I discovered this on the Chicago Park District's site:
Edward H. Bennett designed the monument in collaboration with French sculptor Marcel Loyau and engineer Jacques H. Lambert. Inspired by the Latona Basin at Versailles, the structure is composed of four basins clad in elaborately carved granite and pink Georgia marble. The Buckingham Fountain; however, is twice the size and re-circulates approximately three times more water than its French counterpart. Chicago’s fountain is also unique as it symbolizes Lake Michigan. Conveying the enormity of the lake, its major display uses as much as 15,000 gallons of water per minute and sprays water to a height of 150 feet from the ground. The massive lower basin features four sets of Art Deco style sea horses representing the four states that border Lake Michigan.
As you can tell, I find Buckingham Fountain to be amazing, and cannot wait for many more trips to it.