Shedd Aquarium and kids.

Old Feb 18th, 2003, 05:37 PM
  #1  
M_J
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Shedd Aquarium and kids.

We are taking our 9 yr old and 16 yr old nephews to Chicago. They live in a small Wisconsin farm town. In addition to seeing the Field Museum (the younger one adores Sue), what are your thoughts about taking them to the Shedd Aquarium? Any comments from similar aged kids? What did you think of the aquarium?
Thanks
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Old Feb 18th, 2003, 06:20 PM
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Absolutely go.

We visited Chicago consecutive summers when my daughter was 9 and 10 and both times the Shedd was a must see.

The whole place is worth investigating but if you only have a short time to visit, pay the extra $ for the Oceanarium to see the dolphins, whales, penguins, otters, etc. It was fantastic.

We live on the east coast and have the occasion to see some of these creatures in their natural habitats (well not the penguins!) and I'd still make a return visit to the Shedd.

Go early if you visit. The place really gets crowded. And don't eat in the cafeteria...it's a dump. Better to lunch at the Corner Bakery in the Field Museum.

Have fun.
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Old Feb 18th, 2003, 07:10 PM
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I would advise against the Field Museum for those ages, while i haven't been there in awhile it seemed extremely boring to me and I can asume even twice as boring for a young child. I would reccomend the museum of science and industry as a replacement which has much more intresting exhibits and many hands on experiments.
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Old Feb 18th, 2003, 07:18 PM
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Cassandra
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Shedd is great but be aware that it is very popular and there may be long lines to get in, long line to get ticket to whatever "shows" may be scheduled. Advise you to get there early, like before opening. We decided to become members, even though we don't live in Chicago, because we decided it was worth the money to a)support the Aquarium and b)get priority entrance.
 
Old Feb 18th, 2003, 08:29 PM
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Definitely take the kids to the Shedd Aquarium. They will enjoy it.
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Old Feb 19th, 2003, 06:29 AM
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The Shedd Aquarium is terrific. The Art Institute is also really nice. My kids (middle school and high school guys) liked it better than the Field Musuem. there is also a broadcasting musuem in the Loop area which my boys really liked. It had a lot of displays re: broadcasting history over the years and a booth where you could do play by play of a sporting event. We also enjoyed going to the Merchantile Mart where you can watch the trading going on. This is where pork bellies, stock futures, precious metals, etc. are traded. It's actually much more visitor friendly than watching the stock exchange in NYC. They might enjoy going to ESPN Zone for lunch or dinner and Ed Debevics also. Those are my boys favorites when we visit Chicago. Also, Garretts (I think that's the name) on Michigan Avenue for popcorn
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Old Feb 19th, 2003, 07:13 AM
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The Museum of Science and Industry would be great for the 9 y.o. but the 16 y.o. might be a little bored unless he doesn't mind enjoying it through the eyes of his little brother. Haven't been to the Shedd lately but I was at the M of S&I last year and the line was UNBELIEVABLY long to pay admission. I mean it reminded me of the roller coaster at a big amusement park! I would imagine the Shedd would be the same. Because we have a Milwaukee Public Museum membership, we passed right by the lines and went right in. Hint-Hint! Unforunately my MPM membership no longer gets us in to the Shedd.
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Old Feb 19th, 2003, 08:50 AM
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If I were taking my kids, I'd choose the Shedd and Art Institute over the Field Museum as well. I was mesmerized for 30 minutes, until closing time, watching a dolphin (or whale?) playing underwater with a soccer ball at the Shedd about 3 years ago.

Even as a 40 year old, the only part of the Field Museum I liked was a temporary exhibit in which you could "play" many of the musical instruments they'd accumulated over the years. The instruments were displayed in glass boxes, the sounds had been recorded, and you could push buttons, etc. to produce the tones. I thought my kids would have loved that display. Once, again, I was at that exhibit until closing time.

It would be worth finding out what the exhibits at the Field were going to be, then going to the more interactive exhibits, or ones designed specifically for children.

I didn't see the Museum of Science and Industry, but from what I've heard, I'd take my children there over the Field, if time were limited.
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Old Feb 19th, 2003, 12:49 PM
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I think it is all a matter of tastes. I have never been to the Art Museum, & have no desire to go there, but have been to the Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium & Museum of Science & Industry many, many times. Among the many time my kids have gone, they have also gone to the Field Museum when in 5th grade, for their class field trip, so they were about 10 yrs old. They came home talked for days about Sue & the Egyptian display, which is setup as though you were walking thru an actual tomb. I also really like the Shedd. I was once offered a job there, & during the interview, was given a behind the scenes tour, that was something to see, but my fields of study were Anthropology & Aquatic Biology, so that is what interest me & also my kids, 11 & 15 yrs old. The kids have been to the Art Museum also, but prefer the Museums & the Shedd.
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Old Feb 19th, 2003, 06:21 PM
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M_J
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Thanks for the many replies. We will definitely take our nephews to the Shedd Aquarium.
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Old Feb 19th, 2003, 07:16 PM
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my kids are 6 and 11, we live in Chicago and they enjoy the Shedd
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Old Feb 19th, 2003, 07:18 PM
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By the way, the Field Museum has a special exhibit called, Baseball as America. You need tickets in advance, but it includes many items from Cooperstown. My husband and son are very interested in seeing it, even though we visited Cooperstown last year.
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Old Feb 19th, 2003, 08:37 PM
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Here's a vote for all three activities on the same campus - the Field Museum, aquarium and planetarium.
The Planetarium has a couple of really good shows that our kids (and we) loved, including the world's first interactive digital theater. We went to a movie there on a mission to Mars, complete with audience participation. It was well worth the time. You might want to call and ask about the nature and timing of the shows, and schedule your trip around that, as timing isn't so important elsewhere.
The Sue exhibit is great, as you anticipate. Right next to the dinosaur exhibit upstairs is an excellent exhibit on the origins of the universe. It takes you, eventually, fossil hunting in Illinois. I imagine Wisconsin has many of the same findings, so your kids might really appreciate that. It is all very interactive, as is the Egypt exhibit someone mentioned.
My kids like the Museum of Science and Industry too, but the Field Museum has come way up in recent years, with many more interactive exhibits that are quite suitable for children the age of yours.
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Old Feb 26th, 2003, 09:35 PM
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If you are considering visiting at least four of the major tourist draws (Shedd Aquarium, Field Museum, Museum of Science and Industry, Adler Planetarium, Art Institute, and Hancock Observatory), it may behoove you to consider a city pass. It will save you a little bit in admission costs but a lot in time, as it gets you into the passholder lines. I don't recall how many days it's valid, but definitely worth checking out. I think any of the attractions' websites will have links, probably the Chicago CVB, and they'll have their own website, of course.

Enjoy your trip,
Meghan
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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 02:01 PM
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M_J
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Just an update. We are back from Chicago and our newphews loved the Shedd. A fantastic time for adults and children, alike. We highly recommend it and want to say "thanks" for your earlier comments. By the way, I think the total admission cost with dolphin show for five adults, the 16 year old has an adult price tag, and a 9 year old was $86.
Again, thanks much.
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