You might love one team, or five. Or perhaps you follow so many different sports, there's only one word for you: a fanatic. A complete sports geek—an oxymoron, if you will, of the jock stereotype. And in Chicago, you are definitely not alone. Sports run through the city's culture and pride, whether you're North or South side. Here is a complete guide of where to watch, buy the best fan gear, learn more about sports history, or even dine at a sports hero's restaurant.
This museum is all about sports history, stats and superstitions, and is located conveniently next to Harry Caray's 7th Inning Stretch at Water Tower Place. We love seeing memorabilia like Derrick Rose's jersey and Sammy Sosa's famous Corked Bat. In the Hall of Legends, you can even test your skills against your favorite players.
Owned by "Da Coach" himself, Ditka's is one of the most upscale steakhouses in the Chicago area. While there are white tablecloths and hardwood floors, look out for the sports motif throughout the establishment. Chops and steaks include the signature "Da Pork Chop," along with the menu-favorite Fridge Burger.
There's no better place to take in a baseball game in Chicago than Wrigley Field (unless you're a White Sox fan—head to Guaranteed Rate Field). The ivy covered walls have been a classic in the Windy City since 1914. Get a behind-the-scenes look with Wrigley Field Tours. If you can't snag tickets, head to one of many bars in Wrigleyville.
If you're as big of a Blackhawks fan as we are, the Blackhawks Store on Michigan Avenue is a mecca for gear. With apparel and accessories for any time of year, you can wear your hockey pride in any season. Stock up on jerseys, t-shirts, even swim trunks, for the entire family. We personally love the beer steins—perfect for game time.
Basketball and hockey fans flock to the United Center to take in a game. The arena also recently revamped its food and beverage programs, teaming up with local restaurants like Big Star and Leghorn Chicken to bring you more than just hot dogs and nachos. To easily get in and out of the parking lot, rideshare zones have been created.
When you hear Harry Caray's, baseball comes to mind. But at the restaurant outposts around town, all sports are celebrated. Harry Caray's Tavern has multiple HDTVs to catch any game, but with a great lakefront location on Navy Pier. Sit on the patio to enjoy the weather, or grab a seat at the bar decorated with memorabilia inside.
Soccer (or should we say, football) fans love The Globe Pub in North Center. As per its name, this pub has a goal of showing as many international sporting events on its TV screens as possible. Doors open early depending on game times around the world. When you're not cheering on your favorite players, munch on the fish and chips.
The official home of "Da Bears," Soldier Field has been an iconic structure in Chicago since 1924. The stadium underwent a modernization in 2003 (much to some critics' chagrin), but that hasn't stopped it from being used more than 200 days out of the year for events. We suggest taking the bus that conveniently stops at the Museum Campus.
Chicago sports fans find all their gear at Clark Street Sports. Find apparel, accessories and home goods emblazoned with Chicago Blackhawks, Bulls, White Sox and Cubs logos, along with the distinctive four stars of the Chicago flag. During nicer weather, the store also has a tent set up near Wrigley Field. Other locations downtown.
Get in on playing a game yourself at WhirlyBall. Never heard of it before? It's a fun combination of lacrosse, hockey, basketball, all while driving bumper cars. If it sounds confusing, don't worry—there are plenty of staff members on hand to help you out. The complexity of it all makes it that much more interesting.