2010: Year in Review

2010 ends this week!  It’s that time of year again when everyone takes stock of what happened in the past 365 days.  It’s also that time of year when every news outlet seems especially keen to throw in their two cents, so just for fun, we surfed the ‘Net and made a list some of the more interesting, informative, and/or zany “2010: Year in Review” stories:

Chicago-related links:

Chicago Tribune: Year in Review and Chicago Tribune: Year in Pictures A collection of the Chicago Tribune‘s most stunning images from the year 2010, from the Blagojevich trial, to the Blackhawks parade and many beautiful serendipitous moments in between.

Roger Ebert’s Top 10 Best Films of 2010 The Chicago Sun-Times critic counts down his Top 10, though he says in the article, “The notion of objectively ordering works of art seems bizarre to me.”

Other 2010 links:

Treehugger: Year in Review Most popular and memorable eco news stories of 2010.

Twitter: 2010 Year in Review Whether you are a Twitter user or not, Twitter’s 2010 Year in Review is worth taking a peak at.  Twitter sifted through all of the year’s chatter and discovered top trending topics, from the Gulf Oil spill and the earthquake in Haiti to World Cup vuvuzelas and Justin Bieber.

YouTube: Rewind 2010 Is it just us, or is YouTube getting even weirder?

New York Times: 100 Notable Books of 2010 Lots of good picks.

ESPN: Year in Review Most memorable sports stories of the year.  (LeBron who?)

Rolling Stone: 30 Best Albums of 2010 Rolling Stone magazine’s “obsessively curated list” of the very best albums of the year.

BusinessWeek: Year in Review The authors grouped the year into chapters—Normal, Jobs, Spills, Stuck, Currency, and Gaga—to “show all the ways in which diverse stories link up, sometimes in linear fashion, sometimes with unexpected leaps such as the price of gasoline, measured in bacon.”

The Daily Show 2010: A Look Back The Daily Show presents the year’s top news stories, done in their characteristic satirical style.


As the first hotel in Chicago to earn LEED Silver certification, Hotel Felix has had a pretty good year!  How about you?

Green link roundup

photo credit : dirk gently : flickr

As a Silver LEED certified hotel, Hotel Felix knows you can have a relaxing, fun hotel experience while still being mindful of the environment.  Here are a few other cool websites and blogs that discuss how to maintain an eco-friendly lifestyle:

Traveling greener (http://www.travelinggreener.com)

Blog about green travel news, trends and information.

Green Bride Guide (http://greenbrideguide.com)

A companion to The Green Bride Guide: How to Plan an Earth Friendly Wedding on Any Budget, the Green Bride Guide is a resource for eco-friendly wedding ideas, product and services. Especially check out the Green Bride Starter Kit.

Fig+Sage (http://figandsage.com)

Fig+Sage provides recommendations and reviews of eco-friendly products to help readers find “truly pure, stylish and low-impact goods.”

The Green Connoisseur (http://www.thegreenconnoisseur.com/blog)

The Green Connoisseur blogs about high-end goods and services that are green and sustainable.

GreenLuxury (http://greenluxury.com)

GreenLuxury is a social network created for green minded consumers.

Rockin’ in the Green World (http://www.rockin-green.org)

Rockin’ in the Green World is a green resource for music lovers. It features news on artists’ latest eco-ventures, recs for eco-friendly products and instruments, and more.

RecycleBox (http://www.officefrog.com/blog)

The RecycleBox was created as a social hub for workers to gather and share how to make the workplace more eco-friendly.

The Chic Ecologist (http://www.thechicecologist.com)

Started by an ecologist, the Chic Ecologist blog promotes green living by covering the latest in green design, eco-friendly products and environmental news.

Ecobunga! (http://www.ecobunga.com)

Ecobunga! is a comprehensive directory of giveaways and deals on green products and services, including sweepstakes, contests, coupons, rebates, sales, etc.

Amaze Magazine (http://amaze-magazine.com)

Amaze is a monthly online e-magazine that focuses on green living.

Mindful Metropolis (http://www.mindfulmetropolis.com)

This website/magazine is a great resource for eco-friendly activities and events around the Chicago area.

Have a rec for another great green website or blog?  Leave a comment and let us know!

Zoolights @ Lincoln Park Zoo

image credit: lpzoo.org
image credit: lpzoo.org

Zoolights returns to Lincoln Park Zoo today!   Every winter, the grounds of Lincoln Park Zoo are decorated with more than 1 million beautiful colored lights.  It’s a very neat experience, and best of all it is FREE and open to all!  The zoo will also have ice carving demonstrations, visits with Santa, and other fun things happening during Zoolights.  Visit the Lincoln Park Zoo website for more information.

Zoolights Dates and Times:

Dec. 3-5, 10-12
Open Nightly Dec. 17-Jan. 2 (Closed Dec. 24 & 25)
5-9 p.m.

Please also note, Lincoln Park Zoo is partnering with One Warm Coat to help the less fortunate this winter season. Coat-donation stations will be at Regenstein African Journey, Regenstein Center for African Apes and the lower level of Park Place Café day and night throughout ZooLights. To learn more, visit: http://www.onewarmcoat.org/

Caroling at Cloud Gate @ Millenium Park

(image credit: millenniumpark.org)
(image credit: millenniumpark.org)

Coming up Friday nights is Caroling at Cloud Gate in Millennium Park.  Using Chicago’s famous skyline as a backdrop, a different Chicago choral group will perform each week.  Admission is free, and with complimentary warm beverages from Caribou Coffee, you’ll be in the holiday spirit before you can say “Jingle Bells.”

The performances run Dec. 3 – Dec. 17 and begin at 6:00 PM in Millennium Park.  Below is more information about the choirs featured, courtesy of the Millenium Park website:

Friday, December 3
Chicago Children’s Choir
The Chicago Children’s Choir is a multiracial, multicultural choral music education organization dedicated to shaping the future by making a difference in the lives of children and youth through musical excellence. Today, The Chicago Children’s Choir serves more than 3,000 young singers and is America’s largest, most comprehensive organization devoted to the musical education of children. By developing musical skills and performing in public, the children acquire poise, increased self-esteem, and an understanding that discipline and hard work bring rewards. Tonight’s performance is conducted by Judy Hanson, Director of Choral Programs.

Friday, December 10
Old Town School of Folk Music
Throughout its 50 year history, the Old Town School of Folk Music has taught and celebrated music through cultural expressions rooted in the traditions of diverse American and global communities. Tonight’s event features Chicago Tribune commentators Eric Zorn and Mary Schmich, and Old Town School faculty and students in a special “Caroling at Cloud Gate” edition of Songs of Good Cheer, an annual holiday caroling party now in its 12th year at the Old Town School.

Friday, December 17
Wicker Park Choral Singers
Wicker Park Choral Singers has quickly grown from a grassroots effort in the spring of 2008 to an established performing arts ensemble in the Chicagoland area. Its approximately forty members are passionate about making world-class choral music accessible to the community, and are committed to producing concerts that are free and open to the public. With repertoire ranging from Renaissance motets to contemporary works of today’s foremost composers, WPCS aims to provide something to excite and engage each and every audience member.

For more information, visit the Millenium Park site:


One of a Kind Show (Dec 2-5)

December has arrived, which means it’s time to find the perfect gift for everyone on your shopping list.  If you are in Chicago this weekend and looking for gift-giving inspiration, try the 10th Annual One of a Kind Show and Sale at Chicago’s Merchandise Mart happening this Thursday, December 2 to Sunday, December 5.

Featuring the unique creations of over 600 artists, from furniture to fashion to gourmet gifts, the One of a Kind Show and Sale also includes handmade and eco-friendly products.  For example, Abbey Brown Soap Artisan uses fair trade ingredients and locally grown organic herbs in its products.  All of the packaging is also done in house by hand.  Here is photo of one of their signature soaps:

Abbey Brown Signature Soap
Abbey Brown Signature Soap (http://abbeybrown.com)

Another artist featured at the One of a Kind Show and Sale, David Stine, uses only native hardwoods harvested from Stine’s family’s forests in Dow, Illinois.

(image credit: stinewoodworking.com)
David Stine Woodworking (Stinewoodworking.com)

To view the show’s artist directory and for ticket information, visit the One of a Kind Show and Sale website at http://www.oneofakindshowchicago.com.

Ice skating @ Millenium Park

(image credit: cpdit01.com)
(image credit: millenniumpark.org)

McCormick Tribune Ice Rink in Millennium Park is now open!   One of Chicago’s winter hot spots, the rink draws more than 100,000 skaters annually and is free and open to the public.  Skate rental is available for $10.

The ice rink is located on Michigan Avenue between Washington and Madison Streets.  Click here for directions to the rink from Hotel Felix.

Regular hours for the season are as follows:
Mondays-Thursdays, 12PM-8PM
Fridays, 12PM-10PM
Saturdays (through Dec.18), 10AM-10PM
Saturdays (beginning Jan. 8), 10AM-9PM
Sundays, 10AM-9PM

Holiday Hours
Friday, December 24, 10AM-6PM
Saturday, December 25, 10AM-4PM
Friday, December 31, 10AM-8PM
Saturday, January 1, 12PM-10PM

For more info: