Cool Things To Do for Cool Young People in Chicago: Museum Hack at the Art Institute | Mermaid Waves | Chicago Fashion Destination

January 14, 2017

Cool Things To Do for Cool Young People in Chicago: Museum Hack at the Art Institute

Hey Mer-babes! I am always looking for fun things to do around the city, that aren't just eating.  Whenever I am spending the day with a friend the only activity that ever crosses my mind is to go out to eat, and while that is arguably the best way to spend time there are a million other amazing activities in the city of Chicago.  I am so excited to explore the thousands of cool things to do in the city and bring my first hand account to you.  Thats where "Cool Things To Do for Cool Young People in Chicago" comes in.  A simple name (LOL) for a simple idea that is actually crazy difficult IRL, finding activities to do that aren't completely lame is a struggle! The first edition is all about Museum Hack.

The first thing I will tell you about Museum Hack is I have literally never laughed so hard in a museum ever.  TBH I have a really hard time with museums because I have a very short attention span and I like to move quickly.  I rarely stop to look at the art and really breathe it in, that doesn't appeal to me at all.  Over the summer I saw the entire Whitney museum in New York in about 45 minutes; every floor, every room.  It's not that I don't adore art, I find it completely fascinating, moving, and goose bump worthy but I am always on the go, I don't stop for anything, not even art.

To say I was skeptical about Museum Hack would be accurate but on their website it says "This isn't your grandma's museum tour" so that sounded promising enough.  In Chicago they offer tours at the Art Institute, but they also offer tours in New York, D.C., and San Francisco.  When we first arrived our tour guide Mark was waiting for us, and I was a little nervous.  I have this awful attitude problem where I don't like people who act smarter than me, like your average tour guide tends to do.  Mark was a total winner because he wasn't acting as some "I-know-better-than-you" smarty-arty guy but as a story-teller with all the best gossip.  You know I am all about sipping tea and talking art gossip so I was ready to go.

I don't want to get into too many details of the tour because I want you to experience it first hand, and laugh at hard as I did, but I will give you a quick rundown.  Mark picked out his favorite pieces and had all the deets, the good, the bad, and the funny.  Without a painting in the Art Institute there wouldn't be Ghost-Busters, for real 😂.  Another fun fact is that monkeys were considered the epitome of wealth back in 18th century France, there is a set of monkeys in the Art Institute dressed as musicians that was a gift to Madame de Pompadour from Louis XV himself and to say they are hilarious is an understatement.   We also hung out in the #1 public make out spot in Chicago, who knew that was even a thing?!

Not only did we learn about the art we played with the art.  In the modern wing, each person had to prepare a three course meal using pieces of art.  It was seriously so much fun and an activity I want to go back and do on my own time.  My vanilla ice cream sundae was someone else's cheese platter and that is honestly what art is all about.

 While we were on our tour one of our tasks was to find our Art Institute Soul Mate, and at the end of the tour we had to present our love story.  I chose a chair, naturally, as one does.  This was no ordinary chair it was a luxurious chair with gold, pink, and literally all the tassels, what else could a girl ask for?  My love story was so moving I won a Picasso sticker book! Score.  We also wrote postcards, I wrote one to my grandma but don't tell her because she reads my blog, and took a photo with our Spirit Statue.  I took a selfie with Truth while she looked at herself in the mirror, we are one in the same really.   We were in the Art Institute for two hours and I didn't even check the time on my phone once.  We finished the tour and I was shocked that I had been that engrossed in the experience for 120 minutes, which is like 10 years in millennial time.

I seriously recommend you book a tour with Museum Hack, it is the perfect indoor activity and a total escape from the brutal and often boring winter months.  Museum Hack doesn't only offer public tours they also offer team-building workshops which are the opposite of lame.  The workshops are complete with scavenger hunts, and tons of activities for the ultimate team building experience.  

You babes have to share with me your experiences with Museum Hack, or literally just take me with you! 10/10 recommend.  


  1. Great post!

  2. Love this whole outfit!! Its so pretty



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