Personally, I would take a taxi to the famous Second City Theater and see an improv comedy show put on by the latest group of hopefuls that aren’t in the Groundlings. Then maybe stop by the Art Institute if I had time.
If I could, just walk around ! Try some food, and soak up the atmosphere of the immensity of the place and it’s buildings.
The one and only time I was in Chicago was because I really did have a layover for a couple of hours between trains when I was traveling from Washington, D.C. to St. Louis back in 1980. I just went walking around the area around the train station. I remember it was late October and it was snowing already – only flurries, but snow nonetheless!
I recall seeing some street bridges which reminded me of the opening credits from The Bob Newhart Show. I also remember I chanced upon a record store where I bought a probably bootleg record of some of Bob & Ray’s “Mary Backstage, Noble Wife” sketches. And I still have it.
At the risk of angering Chicagoans, you were better off in St. Louis.
Yeah, I have to second previous suggestions. Deep Dish and Art Institute. Museum of Science and Industry too. The building was part of the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair.
Remember, it’s only a 4-hour layover.
At only four hours, I’d choose to stay in the airport. Leaving and re-entering security and traveling to any destination easily eats up most of the available time.
But I’m also the kind of person who has a minor panic attack if I’m not at my departure gate with at least 45 minutes to spare, so factor that in.
Depending on which way I was going, if I had a four hour layover in Chicago, I’d rent a car and drive home.
Jeez, it’s like you people haven’t even seen The Rebel Set.
Ah okay. Train. Yeah. Then I’d contact one of my Chicago friends and say “come get me and let’s eat a food together.”
(In my defense, a train to Chicago is like, I dunno, 30 hours of travel, so it ain’t happening.)
If I had a 4 hour layover in Chicago I’d fly out of Minneapolis.
How are you going to rob an armored car with a 30-hour train trip?
That’s at least two episodes of MST3K right there!
I’m trying to think of a witty response but my brain is stubbornly insisting I wouldn’t have one (since I can drive there, park and get a shuttle to the airport in approximately 4 hours). And a ride into town via the metro takes a heckuva long time that you’d barely be able to peer up at the Willis Tower before heading back.
Overriding my initial response… I’d take an Uber to the IKEA in nearby Schaumburg and get lost for a couple hours and have fun “translating” the product names.
In that case, I would rent one of these and drive home.
For a real life layover coming up next week, me and my wife are legit going to pre-download a few episodes of MST3K on the Gizmoplex app and enjoy some MST3K at the airport. Layover in style!
I’d make my dropoff and forget I knew anything about it.