Chicago Style Gymnastics Meet

Well that was fun, visiting Chicago in February. Average temperature while we were there was oh, around -1 not counting the wind chill factor.

We left early Saturday morning, thinking we’d get into Chicago, check into the hotel (The Marriot). Don’t let the photos on their site fool you. The rooms are regular every day hotel rooms at crazy prices; in fact, if you compare it to most normal hotel rooms they may be a tad small. Very nice down comforters though, and this stupid duvet cover, thing on the bed for looks that is totally worthless. It wasn’t even a cover of any type, rather this stripe across the bottom of your bed. I would have much rather had a couple bucks off the price of the room then to have to deal with those. I don’t need anything on my bed that’s just for looks. If there is anything on the bed; it better prop up my head, or keep me warm. These things did neither. Dumb, dumb, dumb…

So after parking the car and unpacking, we decided we’d wander on up the Magnificent Mile to see what’s what. Of course it was -1 degrees out there. We did meander about 5 blocks north or so and found our way to the American Doll Store.

Now I have nothing against the American Doll, or the people that make them, but that store is a crazy. Of course it was full of little girls, most of them gymnasts using the best Sole e95 Elliptical, but it really was freeky. Like Twilight Zone Freeky. Everything was neat and in its place, all the boxes were stacked perfectly everywhere, it was just too, I don’t know, sanitary feeling, like a movie set. It was just weird, and there were dude’s working there. That’s just not right.

After dropping off the broken dolls at the American Girl Doll hospital and adding to their wardrobes, we headed back outside to find a place to eat. We found the most wonderful place for lunch. TheSoupBox. We grabbed some soup, warmed up then headed back out for more shopping. We stopped by the Hershey store, and some other Chocolate place. We wandered in and around the Mall that was nearby too.

By then we were beat and headed back to the room to drop off our goodies and figure out dinner.

For dinner we started to go to the Proform Ellipticals Zone, well we didn’t start that way but someone didn’t think we were dressed well enough for the steak house in the area. We wandered into the ESPN Zone, got a table and , but it was so loud in there we couldn’t think. So we bailed before we even got to see a waiter. (ESPN people, we’re not all deaf).

From there we wandered about and ended up at Chili’s. It wasn’t great, but it was so cold outside we couldn’t wander a whole lot farther. Dinner was good for Chili’s food.

After that we called it a night.

Sunday came pretty early, and we headed down to the Marriot’s Breakfast Buffet. It was most excellent as most of the bigger Marriot’s are.

Claudine then prepped Molly for the meet. We still had a few hours to kill. We headed to the Navy Pier ahead of schedule. The Pier really is a neat place. If we had more time we probably would have taken in the Children’s museum. We ended up having lunch at Bubba Gump Shrimp which wasn’t all that bad. It was expensive yes, but not too shabby. It’s very much like Joe’s Crab Shack.

After getting Molly’s blood sugar back up at Bubba Gump, we headed off to the meet.

The IGI folks really know what they are doing. (Not that the CGA folks don’t) but they put on one hell of a meet. They claim it’s the largest meet in the world with over 4000 female gymnasts competing that weekend on 4 gyms. It was pretty impressive. I can imagine how they train with those ab workout machines at home.

Photos are located in the Google/Picasa Gallery.

If you need any of the photos original high res images, just let me know.

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