Chicago Trip 2018
Trip No. 5 of 2018 is officially in the books! Although it didn't go the way we had originally planned, exploring Chicago was a great experience! It's such a beautiful city!
Saturday, June 16th (Traveling Day)
It was an early morning, but an electric one as well! Most of our Pantone internal fam, plus the many others who bought plane tickets through us flew together on a flight that left a little after 6 am from LAX. Despite it being an early start to the day, everyone was dressed in their Dodger gear, ready to venture out to Chicago to support our boys in blue!
Myself and a couple of the other Pantone girls, had a different flight that left from LAX at 8:30 am. We had an hour layover in Denver, and then were on our way to Chicago!
Once we landed, we headed to meet the rest of our group at our hotel. Everyone who booked a hotel room(s) with us either stayed at the Congress Plaza Hotel or Comfort Suites. We stayed at the Congress Hotel.
It had been a long day of travel, from having two flights, to the almost hour drive to our hotel. We arrived around 6:30 pm. We washed up and relaxed for about an hour and then headed to dinner at Giordano's. They say that trying Chicago's deep dish pizza is a must if traveling there, so of course we did...and it did not disappoint! I, personally, was a little skeptical since I'm not a huge fan of thick crust pizza, plus I didn't see any toppings on it when it first came out. I then quickly realized after taking a bite, that all the toppings were inside! Giordano's was the only pizza we tried while we were out there, but I highly recommend it; they even sold it at Wrigley!
Later that night, once we were back in our hotel, a few of us decided to go "ghost hunting." You see, the Congress Hotel is said to be the most haunted hotel in Chicago. We didn't see any ghosts...but our floor and many other floors had really creepy, dim lighting. The architecture of the staircase was also really outdated, not necessarily in a bad way, it gave the hotel character. What I thought was funny was how different the floor levels were compared to the bright, more modern looking lobby/downstairs level. Even our rooms were outdated, but like I stated before, it wasn't necessarily a bad thing; we had the important things, such as warm water, clean towels, and clean beds to sleep in. After our failed attempt in seeing anything slightly scary, we decided to call it a night and head to bed.
Sunday, June 17th (Yacht Party Day)
Sunday was spent exploring more of Chicago, followed by the yacht party.
After waking up and getting ready, we headed out around 9:30 am to get some breakfast. We were planning on going to Wildberry Cafe, since it's considered one of the best spots for breakfast in Chicago. However, once we got there we found out there was a three hour wait...made sense since it was a Sunday and Father's Day. We decided to keep walking downtown until we found another appealing spot. We ended up eating at Sweetwater Tavern and Grille; it was delicious!
After breakfast, we ventured out to the riverwalk where we ended up renting a small boat and explored a portion of the Chicago River. We got to the end of the river and took some photos with the beautiful Chicago skyline behind us.
After our hour boat ride, we headed back to the hotel to get ready for the yacht party.
The yacht party started at 6 pm, when everyone was allowed to board. The "Mystic Blue" didn't take off until 6:30. For two hours we ate, drank, danced, and mingled with our fellow Dodger fans. My favorite part was the amazing view of the city from the boat! We honestly couldn't have picked a better time for the cruise, the sun setting on the city was an absolutely spectacular view!
Once the boat returned to the dock, everyone parted ways. Before we headed to our hotel to get some rest, we decided to have a full meal at the Margaritaville on the Navy Pier.
I was beyond tired when we got back to the hotel, so I knocked out right away, ready to go for our Wrigley takeover!
Monday, June 18th (GAME DAY)
Monday was another early day for us. After waking up and getting ready, we went back to try Wildberry, the wait was only 30 minutes this time!
After breakfast, we went to check out Cloud Gate, which is more famously known as "The Bean" at Millennium Park. We took photos and hung out for about an hour, and then made our way to the Willis Tower to take some photos up at Skydeck. It was a really neat experience being in the box and seeing the city right underneath me!
From the Willis Tower, we rushed to Deuce's for the pregame party which was a big success! I have never been surrounded by so many Dodger fans at a bar. The atmosphere was so fun! After calling out our 50/50 raffle winner around 4:45, everyone was finishing up closing tabs and packing up to head over to Wrigley!
If you haven't joined us on one of our trips or marched with us, I strongly recommend doing so, especially for the march. Filling up the streets of the opposing team's city while chanting "LET'S GO DODGERS" is always my favorite part of the experience!
Up until getting into the stadium, everything was going great, despite the humidity and heat! (The weather was the only thing I didn't like about Chicago) However, I would have gladly taken that over the rain we got later that night, temperatures dropped too!
We all started filling up the bleachers in center field as game time approached. We started getting our big LA flag ready for when the game started...and that was when we received the news that the game had been postponed until 9 pm because of a big cloud coming in. I had hope the whole night that the game would still be played, since they had put out the tarp on the infield a little after 6. We all continued to wait; after getting some food and eating, myself and a couple of the Pantone girls walked around Wrigley a little looking for another pin to add to our collection. We then returned to our seats and waited. It made me a bit upset that up until 8:30 when it started pouring, all the rain that had fallen prior was nothing that could delay a game. I still strongly believe the game could have been played up until it started pouring. The hard rain only lasted about 20 minutes or so. After it had stopped, the grounds crew started leaf blowing the outfield to try to get some water off of it, and started to water the infield so it wouldn't be so dry; everything was pointing towards a game being played that night, until we noticed that the stadium lights down the first base line were turning on and then turning off.
At about 10, I went to the restroom and to buy a sweater, since my shirt was drenched still from the rain. When I got back to my seat, I found out the game had been cancelled and was set to be played at noon the following day. I was pretty bummed. I felt really bad for the majority of the fans that wouldn't be able to catch the game the next day due to early flights. My group's flight luckily wasn't until 5 pm the next day. I was thankful that I would still get to see a game at Wrigley, but also disappointed it wasn't going to be the same experience with half our fans not being there.
Tuesday, June 19th (Last Day)
Tuesday really had a bittersweet feeling to it. I was excited to go to the game, but also sad we were going home and wouldn't be able to watch the entire game.
After getting up, checking out of our hotel, and saying bye to the rest of our group that had to catch an earlier flight, my friends and I headed out to Wrigley. We slept in longer than intended, so we were a little late to the game.
Once we were at Wrigley, we left our luggage at a designated spot underneath the train tracks; this really came in handy for us and many others who were heading to the airport straight from the stadium.
After entering the stadium, we went to get some food and then headed to our seats. As expected, less than half of the bleachers were filled. We watched up until the 7th and then headed out; however, before we did, we of course stopped to get some pictures with the infamous Wrigley sign. From there we headed back to get our luggage and then were on our way to the airport.
Luckily, this time around we had no layovers, so it was a straight shot home.
Despite the unexpected play of events for this trip, I'd say it was still a great trip, especially since it was my first time visiting Chicago. I honestly fell in love with the city; truly an amazing city with so much to do and see!
Can't wait for out next takeover in Anaheim on Friday, July 6th and 7th!
- Mireya Castaneda