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Wow, there’s so much to see in Chicago, where do I start?

For beads and rocks see:
Ayla’s Original’s
Dave’s Down to Earth Rock Shop
For a complete list of bead shops in the area, visit the site of the Greater Chicago Bead Society.

For some amazing intarsia and much, much more, visit the Lizzadro Museum of Lapidary Art in Elmhurst, Illinois. Not easily accessible by public transportation, but worth the drive. Also near the Elmhurst Art Museum.

For a gallery and classes see:

Lillstreet Art Center Gallery

For a break from all that shopping, stop for at one of our many all chocolate cafés!
Moonstruck Chocolate Cafe (update: now closed.) on Michigan Ave. You can walk there from the Art Institute and Millenium Park. After your chocolate fix, you can walk over toward Dearborn bridge and stand on the bronze plaque where Fort Dearborn once stood.

Visit the:
Art Institute of Chicago, armor collection, pre Columbian Gold, and lower level decorative arts collection.

It’s a stretch from jewelry, but another excellent museum is the National Museum of Mexican Art (formerly the Mexican Fine Art Center Museum) in the Pilsen neighborhood of Chicago.

It’s the largest museum of Mexican art outside of Mexico! Plan your visit info. is here.

And for more fun stuff to do all around the city, see The Reader’s article, “Back to School 2007: Our Favorite Things.” Warning: some of the ads and/or photos on this site are not rated G! But it’s a great article.

For more, look Chicago up on Roadside America. But be sure to verify addresses of locations you find there with a more reliable source!

There’s so much more to see and do! I know I’ve left out a lot. If you’re a Chicagoan and have a must-see activity, please post a comment! Thanks!

Update: June 29, 2009

Trying to update this, my comments so far are:

If you hit River North, visit the Vale Craft Gallery and Paper Source. The Art Institute of Chicago has just opened their Modern Wing, I haven’t been yet, but a friend tells me it’s fabulous. The Museum of Contemporary Art is nice, but small, go if you’re on the Mag Mile anyway. They have a nice little collection of Calders.

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