Photo: Kristin La Voie Photography
After a night of getting down on the dance floor, a satisfying spread of omelets and pancakes is a logical choice for you and your wedding guests. But that doesn't mean post-wedding activities have to end with the traditional brunch. Especially if your wedding is on a Friday, additional weekend activities are a fun way to make the weekend more like a vacation for out-of-town guests and a fun way to make the most of all the people you love being in one place. Here are a few of our favorite low-key Chicago group outings.
In a city known for its comedy scene, a matinee comedy show at Second City, iO Chicago, The Laugh Factory or another Chicago standard will give guests a chance to sit back, relax, and let out some serious belly laughs. At Second City, the spot your out-of-town relatives will already know by name, nearby eateries like Old Town Pour House and Orso's offer special dining packages through a partnership with the iconic club for groups of 16 or more and there's in-house catering options too. In Lincoln Park, iO's new facility comes complete with its own event space to rent before or after a performance with a stellar view of the city skyline and capacity for up to 300 guests. Read real brides' reviews here!
Whether it's a Wrigleyville rooftop, tailgating at Soldier Field or getting hyped for the Bulls starting lineup, Chicago has a lot to offer squads of sports superfans. While this could be the priciest option if you plan to pay for the group, it also may be the liveliest. Check daily deal sites like Groupon or Living Social for rooftop or tailgating package discounts or if snagging actual tickets to the big game isn't an option, pick a neighborhood sports bar that's showing it on the big screen and feel like you're up close to the action while still being able to catch up with your childhood neighbor or college roommates about their favorite part of the wedding.
Lincoln Park Zoo
On a sunny day, a group stroll around this exotic oasis in the heart of the city is a crowd-pleaser for all ages. Visit the snow monkeys lounging in their state-of-the-art hot spring in the Regenstein Macaque Forest, the zoo's newest exhibit, ride the Endangered Species Carousel or take skyline selfies from the pedestrian bridge that looks out over the city. Plus, it's free and within walking distance of a number of bars and restaurants for when your crew gets tired. Read real brides' reviews here!
If you have the energy for it, this playful place combines bumper cars and lacrosse and the sprawling game centers with three Chicagoland locations have plenty of space for lounging, eating and drinking for those who aren't in the mood. Private and semi-private event space is available to rent and you'll find different food and drink packages and additional activities like bowling, rock-climbing and laser tag depending on whether you choose to visit Lombard, Chicago or Vernon Hills. Just watch out when your most competitive bridesmaid gets on the court.
Green City Market
Depending on what time of year you get married, a morning visit to one of Chicago's favorite farmers markets is a cheap, laid-back and sweet way to send off your guests on a fresh note. Fresh croissants from Bennison's Bakery? Jam from Ellis Farms? A Hoosier Mama pie? You never know what you might find at the market and that's what makes it so fun. Once you and your group get your goodies, settle in on a park bench or right on the grass and make sure not to miss the weekly live music, cooking demonstrations and other events. Read real brides' reviews here!