Come Explore Elgin!
posted November 13, 2018 1:11 PM   RSS

I've heard through the grapevine that there's been discussion of the Chicago non-cabal taking a field trip out to Elgin - I am more than happy to facilitate! See inside for some options.
Within walking distance of the Elgin Metra station (National Street and Big Timber on the MD-W line are also in Elgin, but you want the Elgin station) , we have a selection of places to eat/drink/shop. This isn't quite a comprehensive list, but things I think would particularly attract Mefites.

The Blue Box Café - a Dr. Who themed café.
Elgin Knit Works - a yarn store
Martini Room - a cocktail bar, only open in the evenings.
Al's Cafe - a cute little restaurant with amazing shakes/malts (also Maltinis) in a historic building with lots of character
Legit Dogs and Ice - foodtruck turned restaurant, they have very over-the-top dressed up hot dogs, fries, and Hawaiian ice. Also free arcade games, sometimes live music. (This is the only place on this list I haven't been to personally, but I can vouch for their food quality)
Elgin Public House- Decent Bar/Grill place, good beer selection, solidly good food.
Grand Victoria Casino- Last but not least, the Grand Victoria Riverboat Casino. Technically a boat, permanently docked. Kind of low rent, think less high rollers and more penny/nickel slots where you somehow end up betting $5/pull because there's like 35 different paths to winning. The last time I went, they did have a Dolly Parton slot machine, so there's that. Also bars/restaurants/buffet.

On top of all of that, on Dec 1, there's a Winter Wonderland festival happening, with mostly family-friendly activities. I happened to wander through last year, and there was smores, a little craft fair, a petting zoo, and the Elgin Police Dept decorated their SWAT vehicle and were giving rides in it.

I am basically around any and all weekends (and live here), so am open to pretty much anything anyone else wants to do. This is just a brain dump of ideas. Pick and choose! Or just show up and wander around and see where you end up.
posted by Fig to Proposed (5 comments total)

Right now, I'm free Sunday, the 2nd and maybe Saturday the 15th.

If we wanted to hit the Martini Room (and why wouldn't we?) on a weeknight, I've got more options.
posted by crush at 6:45 AM on November 14


Oh yeah -- weeknights definitely also an option!
posted by Fig at 6:49 AM on November 14


I've never been to Elgin. Sounds like fun.

First week in Dec is going to be pretty tough for me, with several impossible days. After that, it gets easier. Weeknights are fine, though I doubt I can make it before around 7:30 or so most days.

The Riverboat sounds ridiculous, which is appealing. But, I'm also a fan of martinis, good food, and Dr. Who. I'm keen on any option.
posted by eotvos at 11:37 AM on November 16 [1 favorite]


Elgin-ish (Tollway at IL 31) also has what might be the last remaining Bennigan's in Illinois.

Last time I was in Elgin proper was in the late '90s when there was a microbrewery near the river with a lax ID-checking policy. Sadly it seems to be no more.
posted by hwyengr at 12:21 PM on November 20 [1 favorite]


I was born at Sherman Hospital (Now Presence St. Joseph) in Elgin. I'm far from there now, so you'll have to have fun without me. The Elgin metra is also within walking distance from the first house my parents owned after getting married, bought for the kingly sum of $30,000 in 1969. If you see any memories floating around grab 'em for me.
posted by Mr.Encyclopedia at 6:19 PM on November 21 [2 favorites]



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