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Lansing, IL - You've probably heard the newest tourism buzzword by now, "Staycation." If you haven't, it's time to pick up the phone and book yours right now!
Staycations are a night or weekend away from home but still in the neighborhood - a stay-in-the-neighborhood-vacation - and are the new, hip way to "get away" as gas prices climb and the economy slows.
Select Chicago Southland hotels, including the Baymont Inn Alsip, Country Inn & Suites Matteson, Country Inn & Suites Tinley Park, Doubletree Hotel Chicago/Alsip, Hilton Oak Lawn, Tinley Park Holiday Inn Select & Convention Center, Regency Inn South Holland, and the Wingate by Wyndham Tinley Park are offering special package rates on the Chicago Southland destination website, www.visitchicagosouthland.com.
Some Southland Staycation hotels offer additions to their packages, such as pizza, pop and admissions to family fun centers or bowling lanes. Most of the hotels have indoor pools for family enjoyment.
Your Staycation in the Chicago Southland offers a variety of things to see and do with family and friends.
During the summer and fall, the Southland boasts a huge number of festivals and events in the region, like the Will County Fair in Peotone August 20 - 24; South Holland's Heritage Festival events August 27 - 31 throughout the village; Robbins 10th Annual Homecoming & Back to School Festival, August 28 - 31, and the Frankfort Fall Festival August 30 - September 1, among many other festivals and events throughout the region.
Here's a few more Southland festivals and events:
Crestwood Fest, August 7 - 10
Park Forest Scenic 5-Mile Race, September 1
Worth Days, September 4 - 7
Oak Lawn's Fall on the Green, September 5 - 7
Tinley Park Fine Arts Festival & Autumn Parade, September 7
Mexican Independence Day Celebration, Blue Island, September 12
Flossmoor Fest, September 13
Monarch Butterfly Festival, Lake Katherine Nature Preserve, Palos Heights, September 21
Park Forest Art Fair, September 21
Crete Antique Fair, September 21
Midlothian Scottish Fair & Celtic Celebration, September 27
The Frontier League Champion Windy City ThunderBolts play ball at Standard Bank Stadium through August and into early September, and the Chicago White Sox continue their run for the American League Central title into early October. Chicago Fire Soccer runs into October at TOYOTA PARK in Bridgeview, where the Chicago Machine Pro Lacrosse Team also plays.
Live racing begins at Balmoral Park in Crete on August 9, and Super Night, September 20, brings together Illinois harness racing's best horses and drivers for a night full of racing action and over $1 million in purses. Two chili cook-offs also take place on September 20: one in Homewood as part of Homewood Fall Fest and one in Palos Park, along with a parade, too!
Music is a huge part of Summer in the Southland.
The region's three music venues, First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre, the Country Club Hills Theater, and TOYOTA PARK all offer stellar line-ups of music all summer and into September. Concerts and events are listed on the venue web sites; go to www.livenation.com for the First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre; www.countryclubhillstheater.org for the Country Club Hills Theater; and www.toyotapark.com for TOYOTA PARK.
Many Southland communities also have their own outdoor music and movie programs during the summer months, including:
Summer Concert Series, Hickory Hills, August 5
Music in the Plaza and Cruise Night, Tinley Park, August 9
Summer Concerts, Evergreen Park, August 17, September 7
Music in the Plaza, Tinley Park, August 23, September 13
Movie in the Park, Palos Park, August 22
Sunday Night Concerts, Oak Lawn, August 17 & 31
Concerts on the Green, Frankfort, August 10, 17, 24, and 31
Additionally, numerous Southland communities host Cruise Nights, featuring classic and antique cars and occasionally food, refreshments and entertainment.
For more Southland festival and event information, go to www.visitchicagosouthland.com and search for events in any of the 62 communities represented by the Chicago Southland CVB.
Another great way to spend Summer in the Southland is outdoors!
Numerous Southland municipalities have outdoor municipal swimming facilities, including: Alsip, Burbank, Calumet City (Kiddie Pool), Frankfort (Splash Pool), Homewood-Flossmoor, Midlothian (Splash Pool), Oak Lawn, Orland Park, Palos Heights, Park Forest, Tinley Park, and University Park.
The region's Forest Preserve Districts also offer a variety of outdoor activities, including picnicking, fishing, biking & hiking, canoeing & kayaking (Monee Reservoir), nature centers and nature programs, and a host of other activities for the adventurous.
Take a look at the Forest Preserve District of Cook County, www.fpdcc.com, or the Forest Preserve District of Will County, www.fpdwc.org websites for more information.
For a special treat, go to Cook County's only canyon, Sagawau Canyon, for a two-hour guided tour through this special place filled with flora and fauna, www.fpdcc.com.
Children's museums are located in Oak Lawn for the little ones, and several family fun centers like Hollywood Park in Crestwood and Haunted Trails in Bridgeview will keep the kids busy on rainy days.
Don't forget the regional cinemas and shopping malls for rainy Staycation days, and over 35 public and semi-private golf courses for hitting the links.
These are just a few of the myriad of things you can do during your Southland Summer Staycation, so get out and spend an enjoyable time in your own backyard, the Chicago Southland!
Look for special Staycation hotel offers and coupons at www.visitchicagsouthland.com, or call the Chicago Southland Convention & Visitors Bureau at 708-895-8200 for more Staycation information!
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Chicago Southland Convention & Visitors Bureau
2304 173rd Street - Lansing, IL 60438
P: 708-895-8200 - F: 708-895-8288