Hello there, Hyde Park. It's not going to be a thousand degrees, so let's all try hard to spend some time outdoors, lounging, running, etc. Here's a weekend proposal for you:
Friday, June 22
Put some kebabs on the grill. If you don't have a grill, make a sandwich (I like roast beef or grilled cheese) -- a light dinner, no frills. Drink white wine or Blue Moon. Sit outside, talk to your neighbors. If you don't like your neighbors, come meet mine -- they're great. Stay outside until you're sleepy and then go to bed.
Saturday, June 23
Eat a chocolate croissant (if it's the last one, please leave it for me and get something else instead). Alternately, go next door to Z&H and have the 'Snorky.' Either breakfast option should be paired with an iced coffee; the combo will power you up for your adventures.
53rd Street Bike Center
Go to the 53rd street bike center and rent a two-wheeler. Apply sunscreen. Wear a helmet. DON'T RIDE ON THE SIDEWALKS. (Cyclists who ride in the street, signal their turns, and generally follow the rules will be rewarded with smiles from me and mucho good karma.)
Ride to the South Loop. People-watch from the Museum Campus (any spot will do). If you're hungry, eat something from a vendor. If you can wait until lunch, maybe take a snooze or read a book for a while. (Or chase your toddler.) Reapply sunscreen.
Ride your bike to one of these places for lunch:
Flo and Santos
Everything here is delicious. Don't miss the onion rings. Or the meatball sub. (Don't forget the hot peppers!)
A Jewish deli PLUS a full bar PLUS an ice cream parlor. This place is my dream. They do brunch, so you can still get pancakes, but I'd recommend a sandwich. And save room for a dynamite banana split. Drink a bloody mary if you like your meal in liquid form.
You all know about Epic Burger, right? Hands down my favorite burger spot in the city. Locally sourced ingredients, easy enough to convince myself it's healthy. The junior burger is plenty (unless you're sharing with a hungry 16-month old). The fries are divine. The peanut butter milkshake is making me salivate as I type this. You'll probably see me there.
After lunch, walk around for a minute and digest. Then bike toward home.
Reapply sunscreen. Be a Hyde Parker and hang out at the point for awhile. Throw a frisbee, pet a dog, meditate by the water (if you can tune out the sounds of your neighbors, you are nearer nirvana than I will ever be!).
Pick up a salad. You're probably still full from lunch.
Sunday, June 24
Go back to sleep. Get your spouse to watch the baby/water the plants/pick up the dry cleaning/whatever NEEDS to be done.
Wake up (for real this time). Take your coffee outside. Pick up a Chicago paper and read it cover-to-cover. Try not to get too worked up about the election or the Sandusky trial or the drought. Just let it go for the day.
Stroll on over to HPP and pick up a sandwich, chips, and a drink. Plus an apple or something. Take it across the street to Nichols Park, where it's likely someone will be out playing music of some type. Find a shady spot and sit around to listen for awhile.
Get your stuff done. I recommend putting off whatever isn't really critical, but let's assume you've got mouths to feed or homework to do or emails that need sending. Now is the time.
Make succotash (zucchini, corn, red pepper, and lima beans are my necessities). Pair it with fish or chicken or steak, cooked on the grill if you've got one (but the stove does fine, too).
Get back outside and watch the sunlight fade (you'll be hard-pressed to find an actual sunset view this side of the city). Drink one last slow glass of Sunday wine. Listen to those cicadas.
And enjoy your weekend, Hyde Park!
Filed under: This Weekend in Hyde Park