Monday, September 21, 2009

Out-of-Town Guests

If you're planning a wedding (or any event) where you have out-of-town guests you might be wondering what you're going to do with them. WGIC has some great ideas to make your out-of-towners feel right at home in the big city!

First, and foremost, make sure all guests that are not native to Chicago are armed with a good map. It is worth taking the extra time to create an event map for those that may need a bit more direction when navigating through Chicago. This will also cut down on the number of angry phone calls you receive from lost family members and will leave a much better lasting impression of our great city.

Creating an itinerary with addresses for the church, reception location, city landmarks, shopping, museums, etc. is also helpful. Be sure to include event start times, dress code, weather conditions, and who is expected to attend which events.

Transportation is also something you need to think about. If guests are expected to take public transportation be sure they know where they're going and how much time is needed from door to door (this will ensure they are not late to your big day/event!). If you prefer they take a taxi, a good event favor (or something to include in the hotel goody bags) is a prepaid credit card to cover some of their costs. Another good idea is to hire a transportation company to ease you and you're guests nerves about getting around.

Check out an example of a Google Map and an Event Itinerary.

Here are some other great ideas for your out-of-towners:

Places to visit:
1. Navy Pier
- Have an outing planned for the night guests arrive. Navy pier plays host to many events with several beautiful event spaces. The Crystal Gardens are my personal favorite, but be sure to check them all out before making any decisions! After you can even go see a movie at the IMAX Theater!

2. Shed Aquarium
3. Adler Planetarium & Museum
4. Museum of Science and Industry
5. Field Museum
- See Sue, the world's largest, most complete and most famous T. Rex. See also, the current attraction: Real Pirates: The Untold Story of the Whydah from Slave Ship to Pirate Ship
6. Art Institute of Chicago
7. Soldier Field
8. Wrigley Field
9. Sears Tower
- You can visit the traditional Sky Deck of the, now, Willis Tower. Or if you're really adventurous, you can try out the new Sky Deck Ledge!

10. Architectural Boat Tour
11. Frank Lloyd Wright Houses
12. Chicago Symphony Orchestra
13. Millenium Park
- The prominent features are the Frank Gehry-designed Jay Pritzker Pavilion, the most sophisticated outdoor concert venue of its kind in the United States; the interactive Crown Fountain by Jaume Plensa; the contemporary Lurie Garden designed by the team of Kathryn Gustafson, Piet Oudolf and Robert Israel; and Anish Kapoor's hugely popular Cloud Gate sculpture (The Bean) on the AT&T Plaza.
14. Lincoln Park Zoo
15. Lincoln Park Conservatory -or- Garfield Park Conservatory

16. Chinatown
17. Greektown

Did you recently have a destination wedding in Chicago? Let us know where you took your guests and how they liked it!

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