Ask ChicagoNow: Why do you live in Chicago?

Ask ChicagoNow: Why do you live in Chicago?

ChicagoNow is a group of bloggers from all sorts of different backgrounds.

With so much collective experience, we’ve decided to put that knowledge to use by posing some of the oldest and most popular questions to the group.

Why do you live in Chicago?

“Because there’s so many great things to do from some of the best restaurants in the world, the many unique neighborhoods, amazing theater, art, museums, major sports teams, the Riverwalk, Lake Michigan, the summer festivals and the beaches. And that’s just for starters!” — Carole Kuhrt Brewer, Show Me Chicago

“I blame my parents. Not in a good way.” — Melissa Bulicek, Oh, Life!

“I was born here and spent most of my adult life here, loving it mostly. But not for long. Illinois is a mess.” — Dennis Byrne, The Barbershop: Dennis Byrne, Proprietor

“I live here because I am the caregiver to my mom, who not only has the typical aging issues, but has a mental illness as well. If I hadn’t moved back here, she’d probably be dead, in jail, or in an institution. That’s probably not the type of answer you were hoping for, but it’s the truth. If I didn’t have to be here, I wouldn’t be.” — Jessica Gardner, Little Merry Sunshine

“My grandfather came up here from Louisiana in 1924 during the ‘Great Migration’ and it’s simply home.” — Charles W Johnson, The Vociferous Envoy

“Family, friends, doctors in that order.” — Judy Marcus, Opinionated Woman

“Schools that have resources.” — Mark McDermott, The Beeronaut

“Summer!! I live here because it’s so much fun here in the summer. Baseball, concerts, beach, etc. Makes up for winter. Oh yeah, my children live here too so there’s that.” — Howard Moore, I’ve Got The Hippy Shakes

“I moved here for undergrad at the University of Chicago — and only considered northern colleges because I wanted real winter weather. I stay here because I still love the real winter weather, because I love living somewhere where I don’t need to drive (I am unsafe at any speed!), because there’s horse racing almost all year round, and because the city is full of so many different neighbourhoods that I haven’t gotten bored.” — Nicolle Neulist, Picks & Ponderings

“Born here, 20 years of education here, married a girl from here, raised our kids here and are watching the next generation grow here. Never thought of leaving, but maybe I am in a rut????” — Les Raff, Getting More From Les

“I was kind of tricked into coming. So, at first, it was because I had fallen in love with a guy who lived here. And I was going to study here. Once I arrived, I fell in love with the city itself.” — Ana Martin Sagredo, Foreign Affairs: Children Edition

“I do love all that a big city offers like shows, shopping, museums etc but the main reason I live in Chicago is because my family lives here! If they all moved, I might go somewhere warmer on a beach.” — Susan Schulhof, Looking for the Good

“I visited my sister here in March of 1989 for my Spring Break. My brother and I had bought her a nice kite for her birthday, and I managed to lose it at Midway when I stopped to use the phone to call her and tell her I’d landed. I’d flown with a sinus infection and I literally could not hear a word she’d said on the phone so I’d had to put the kite down to plug my other ear to try to make out what she was saying. The next day, even though I was sick, she made me stand with her on a freezing cold morning on windy-as-hell Clark Street at an ungodly hour so she could buy her freaking bleachers tickets for the season. I hated Chicago so much that week! But three years later I came back in the summer and never left.” — Angela Soriano, less than perfect

“We lived in another state. I had an awful job with a mean, narcissistic boss. When things got completely intolerable, my wife said suddenly, ‘That’s it. We’re moving back to Chicago.’ We put our house up for sale and waited, hoping I’d get let go, but if not I was going to quit. Luckily, I got my termination package and we closed on our house within weeks of each other. We wanted to live near Wrigley Field, and we found a place near Western and Addison. Close enough! We went to a lot of ballgames, drove Lake Shore Drive, sat on the lakefront with books, found a favorite spot — Tiny Lounge — for the occasional cocktail (you would never ever find a place like Tiny in the town we used to live in), went to free concerts in the Cultural Center and at Pritzker Pavilion, revisited Chicago architecture, and my wife did outreach presentations for the Art Institute. We went from hell, or at least purgatory, to heaven, as far as we’re concerned. Ten years later we don’t do quite as much, being retired as we are, but we still love it, and we have watched our son’s family grow. They now have three kids and live only 9 minutes away. And our other kids, all born in Chicago, don’t hesitate to come to visit us from Brooklyn and Alaska!” — Floyd Sullivan, Waiting4Cubs

“We moved here from the Netherlands, when my husband’s work wanted him in the headquarters of the company. When he got the offer, he was still thinking about it, while I said: ‘Do it!’ I’d always wanted to travel the world and see as many countries as possible.
We have lived here for 5 years now, and we still love it, although it would be nice to have (some) of our family and friends around. The people that know you from day one. If you ever have the chance to move to another country, and you are a tough cookie like I am (moving is the hardest on the parent that doesn’t work immediately), I’d say: ‘Go for it!’ We’ve had some really hard and very sad issues to deal with ever since we moved, but it only made us stronger. I don’t think any other experience can make you reflect more on your own behavior, than this one.” — Annemarie Verweij, Dutch Alien Lands in the U.S.

If you have a question about Chicago that you want answered, email it to Think you have the answer to the above question? Let us know in the comments below.

Lead image via Chicago Tribune

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