By Jenny Berg Posted November 3, 2008, 8:00 AM EST
CHICAGO As you probably know by now (and we reported here, here, and here) the big event in Chicago on November 4th will be Obama's Grant Park rally, which the Democratic presidential candidate will attend, win or lose, and which is slated to draw 65,000 spectators, a formidable array of security officers, and a plethora of hot-chocolate and hot-dog carts. But for those without tickets, events are also happening at local hotels, bars, restaurants, and museums.
It's a safe bet that the aforementioned 65,000 Grant Park spectators will not include any staunch conservatives or volunteers from John McCain's Chicago headquarters. The latter group will take their election night festivities across the street to the Hilton Chicago, where the Chicago Young Republicans, Republican state party chair Andy McKenna, and Cook County commissioner Tony Peraica will host a free-admission celebration beginning at 6:30 p.m. The event will feature a teleconference with local and congressional candidates, light appetizers, and a cash bar.
Among the local publications, CS magazine will sponsor an event at Lincoln Park's Landmark Grill and Lounge, where three projection screens will broadcast the returns in the restaurant's main dining room, drink specials will include blue and red champagne cocktails, and guests will have the opportunity to win an all-expense paid weekend trip to Washington.
In River North, The Chicago Tribune will host a “Rock the Vote" event replete with DJs, food, and drinks at House of Blues, while Rock the Vote itself will team up with Entity Entertainment and PL5 magazine to sponsor a bash at Hotel Sax's Crimson Lounge, where entertainment will include DJ Ro Parish, official DJ to the Dallas Mavericks.
In the same 'hood, Stretch Run Sporting Club and Grille will attempt to ward off any liquor-fueled partisan disputes by dividing the space into a red room and a blue room, both of which will feature 20 screens tuned into the results. Drink specials in the respective rooms will include the “McCain 10 Cane Red Rum Martini” and the ”Barack on the Rocks Blue Cocktail.” Meanwhile, the nearby Hard Rock Cafe will welcome hip-hop stars Common, Talib Kweli, and Rahsaan to host the “Election Results Watch Party."
On the museum front, Loyola University Museum of Art is hosting an election night party dubbed “The Art of Democracy,” which will feature ”Libertinis” and presidential quizzes. The McCormick Tribune Freedom Museum will offer its own “Bipartisan Blowout” bash, complete with trivia games, open bar, and the opportunity to tour current exhibitions such as “Vote4Me: Inside a Presidential Election.”