Chicago at Night!

 

Greg's brother Mitch was in town, from New Mexico, at the end of August 2001...so, of course, we had to take him up in the plane! Mitch, also a pilot, enjoyed experiencing the differences of flying here.

First we buzzed around during the day so he could see some sites. A quick zip back to the airfield to refuel. And then it was off for a night flight.


I picked up Mitch and we headed from his hotel in downtown Chicago to meet up with Greg, who was bringing the plane down from his airfield to meet us at Palwaukee airport.

We were a little early...so we stopped at the 94th Aerosquadron (restaurant/bar). A very cool place...designed as a remembrance to WWII pilots with picture and tons of memorabilia and music of the time.

Plus! It's right next to the airport...so you can enjoy your food/drink out on the terrace and watch planes landing/taking off. Way cool!

 

These planes are positioned outside the entrance. And the restaurant is made to look like a partially bombed out French farm villa.

 

Planes and tanks greet you in the front. In the back are the airport runways...and you can even eat in the *bombed out* back terrace.

 

The 94th Aero squadron is a must see for pilots and plane buffs...as well as anyone who enjoys a very good meal...great prime rib and seafood!

 

Greg calls us after he lands and we head over to Service Aviation to meet him and start our trip.

(Mitch & Greg Chapman)

 

Gee...can you tell we're at an airport!<g>

 

Mitch...remembering to wave to Granny!

 

The Chappie boys...in one of their favorite places...the cockpit!

 

Big brother always picking on little brother!

 

OK...smile pretty for mom and dad!

 

No...we didn't have to take off behind that thing!

 

It was just being towed! SEE...never park your plane near a fire hydrant! <g>

 

Nice engines, man!

 

We line up with a few "American Flyers" to get ready for takeoff.

 

We're up and we head toward Lake Michigan to take a quick daytime tour of Chicago.

 

But first...we must buzz Greg's office. Computer Adaptive Technologies in Evanston.

 

Check the back terrace to see if the boys are out smoking rather than working!

 

I'm saving my battery for our evening flight...but can't miss a chance to get a shot of Wrigley Field as we head out of the city after taking a daylight look.

That wide blob in the middle is Wrigley Field.

NOTE: If you'd like to see Downtown Chicago pics by day, we have two other sets of tour pictures. One Touring Chicago and one Departing from Meigs.

 

...See! Wrigley Field!

Legendary home of the Chicago Cubs!

Check out Wrigley's live Web Cam!

 

More Wrigley (Double-header going on today!)

 

Notice the tops of the buildings...lots of parties on those roofs.

 

Many have become rooftop restaurants/bars where anyone can go...who can PAY!

But some have remained private buildings.

 

The famous Wrigley bleacher bums!

 

Back at Westosha (Greg's field)...and time to head off for our night flight.

 

We're up. Not much to see yet. But there WILL be LOTS of lights, soon.

 

And this light definitely is cooperating, nicely. A big full moon made the city look even more beautiful.

 

Heading out over the Chain-O-Lakes area.

 

And out to Lake Michigan.

Notice the bright light in the upper/right...that's Wrigley field...seen from the Illinois/Wisconsin border at about 5,000 feet up.

 

The moon shines along the lake shore...helping to ensure we don't have a JFK ride!

 

The Baha'i Temple in Wilmette.

 

So pretty at night!

 

Off toward the city.

 

Notice the brightest light in the center of the shot...again, that's Wrigley Field.

 

Heading down the shoreline to the city.

 

Downtown Chicago. Zoomed in...Don't worry...it gets much clearer and prettier.

 

Our real distance from the city.

 

Looking out toward the neighborhoods.

 

Can you see OUR house?<g>

 

Cool reflection of the city lights...reflecting off the wing.

 

Wrigley kinda stands out, eh?

 

Yeah...kinda!

 

We didn't realize at the time that there would be a game this night...but it was pretty cool seeing it all lit up.

(Much better night shots of it later in the tour.)

 

On to the city.

The bright top lit building on the right is the John Hancock. The large one in the distant middle...is the Sears.

 

Playing with the camera filters trying to show the depth of the buildings. Unfortunately, seeing it live is just WAY better than these pictures show.

 

Another cool wing reflection shot.

 

Navy Pier. Our marker for calling to Meigs Field to get clearance to circle the city.

 

A huge ferris wheel at the pier.

 

So pretty!

 

I wish these pictures could show the *canyon* look between the buildings. It looks SO cool.

 

Looking down the Chicago River to the brightly lit Wrigley Building. There are lights under the Michigan Avenue bridge that shine on the white building to make it display like this at night.

 

The 311 South Wacker building...with the lighted castle on top...and Sears tower to the right.

 

As we cruise down the length of the shoreline...we see the Shedd Aquarium.

 

A zoomed out look of the same area. The Shedd Aquarium on the right...the Planetarium front and center and Soldier Field to the left.

 

Those lined up lights at the shoreline is Meigs Field...with Soldier Field behind.

 

A better look at Soldier Field. Home of Da Bears!

 

McCormick Place...home to Spring Comdex, as well as tons of other trade shows.

 

Zoomed out of McCormick...our turning point to head back up the west side of The Loop (downtown Chicago).

 

Coming around the other side of Soldier Field.

 

The Loop...from the south end looking north. Lake Shore Drive along the right side of Grant Park.

That diamond lit building is the Stone Container building. It's a solar powered, computerized building. Hence the top cut of the building facing toward the sunrise.

 

Ahhh...Chicago traffic!

 

Looking NW...that's the Kennedy Expressway curving toward the left and going out straight toward O'Hare airport, from the city.

 

The Spaghetti Bowl...where the Kennedy, Dan Ryan, Eisenhower and Stevenson Expressways all spin.

 

Looking downtown from the South Side of Chicago.

 

Again...a little closer.

 

Wow...not much traffic! HA! Wait until the morning!

 

The Merchandise Mart...a Kennedy property.

 

See that little square archway in the lower, center of the shot? That's Dian's office building...where she sits outside when it's time for a smoke!

Along the left of the shot you can see the north/south street bridges along the river.

Pretty cool watching all those bridges go up/down when the boats head to the lake in spring and back to dock in fall.

 

Same shot...zoomed out.

 

Going away from the city now.

 

Toward Wrigley again.

 

Much easier to get good night shots of Wrigley now that we're behind the lights.

 

Can't remember who they were playing...but the Cubbies won!

 

Can't buzz around the field like this anymore since 9/11.

 

Heading back to Palwaukee to drop Dian off at her car.

 

The Gold Coast and Oak Street Beach at night. The dark portion in the upper left is the lake curving around the beach.

 

Northwest Tollway heading toward Wisconsin.

 

Our target! Palwaukee airport runway. (That oval in the middle.)

 

Closer....

 

...and closer...

 

I don't know HOW Greg can figure out WHEN he's going to touch!

 

But he does a great job! We're down.

 

The Chappie boys drop Dian off at Palwaukee and head back up in the air to go back to Westosha to park the plane and drive back.

 

And what's a picture of sibblings...without devil horns behind your brother's head!<g>

 

Cool...a truck turns our way and sheds a little light on our boys!

Great flight...thanks Greg!

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