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Navy Pier

Completed in 1916, Navy Pier is undeniably one of Chicago’s top attractions. Stretching into Lake Michigan, this year-round destination truly comes to life in the summer, with fireworks displays, live music, theatre, and cruises setting sail daily. Come fall and winter, Navy Pier is still hopping, with special events, sights, and activities that span all ages and interests. Pier Park is the epitome of fun. It’s where you’ll find the amazing Centennial Wheel, the Pepsi Wave Swinger, a 1920s-inspired musical carousel, and other nostalgic fairground rides. Just so you know, the Centennial Wheel soars to nearly 200 feet, with year-round, climate-controlled gondolas for the most spectacular Ferris wheel ride ever. It’s an iconic part of the Chicago skyline and a treasured piece of Chicago history, harkening to the city’s 1893 World’s Fair. You can even book a VIP Centennial Wheel experience in a glass-bottomed, plush-seated gondola. Fireworks perfectly synchronized to music have become a Navy Pier tradition. Biweekly shows are scheduled on Wednesdays and Saturdays from Memorial Day through Labor Day. For an extra-special experience, watch the fireworks from the water on the deck of a cruise boat.

https://www.choosechicago.com/things-to-do/attractions-and-tours/navy-pier/

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Millennium Park
With 25 acres of awe-inspiring landscape, breathtaking architecture and an iconic collection of public art, Millennium Park is Chicago’s premier green space. Millennium Park celebrated its 10th anniversary season in 2014 and continues to present dozens of free events and programs including art installations, outdoor concerts, films screenings, alfresco workouts and more. https://www.choosechicago.com/things-to-do/parks-and-outdoors/millennium-park/
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Shedd Aquarium
Shedd combines the best of early 20th-century aquariums — a diverse, global animal collection surrounded by mouth-dropping architecture, and a commitment to 21st-century advances in animal care, environments and interpretation. Here, you'll not only find 32,600 of species of sea life, but one-of-a-kind experiences, such as shark feedings, penguin encounters, and even the chance to be a "Trainer for a Day." https://www.sheddaquarium.org/
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Adler Planetarium
Extending out into Lake Michigan from its Museum Campus home, this is America's first planetarium and it has become a recognized leader in science education. The Adler is home to one of the largest and most significant collections of historic scientific instruments in the world. The Adler’s collections also include rare books, manuscripts, archival materials, models, and photographs. Immersive theater programs, special exhibitions and events such as lectures and viewing parties allow you to journey through the vast universe – from the depths of powerful black holes to the heights of Voyager 1, the farthest human-made object from Earth. https://www.adlerplanetarium.org/#5Q8Zfmcg1t8I4heb.97
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Ayzha Fine Arts Gallery
Ayzha Fine Arts Gallery & Boutique promotes original multicultural art and specializes in art of the African Diaspora. The mission of Ayzha Fine Arts includes advancing and supporting master, mid-career, and emerging artists of all ethnic backgrounds, locally and nationally. Services Ayzha Fine Arts coordinates exhibitions at galleries, trade shows and public institutions, as well as corporate and private events. The Gallery also host Artist Salons. https://ayzhafineartsgallery.com/
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Bradford Beach
One of the top urban beaches in the nation, Bradford Beach is the hottest place to be on a summer day. It's clean, full of activity, great views, and plenty of space to spread out, sunbathe, and swim. https://www.visitmilwaukee.org/partners/bradford-beach-5422/
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Agora At Fitchburg Center
Visit Agora Fitchburg and experience a weekly farmer’s market, annual art fair and local retailers that include Bilancio Eyewear, Ecco Salon, Kneaded Relief Day Spa, and Perennial Yoga. https://www.visitmadison.com/listings/agora-at-fitchburg-center/181540/
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Botham Vineyards And Winery
Botham Vineyards has been growing and producing regionally distinctive wines of international acclaim since 1989. Tastings daily during regular seasonal hours. Private and corporate events, weddings and private tours. https://www.visitmadison.com/listings/botham-vineyards-and-winery/177439/
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Gerald R. Ford Museum
At the core of the Museum is the permanent exhibit, which allows visitors to experience highlights from President and Mrs. Ford's lives. The exhibit teaches democratic citizenship and allows for quiet reflection. In addition to the permanent exhibits, changing temporary exhibits draw artifacts from Museums all over the country. Not all museum programming revolves around the exhibits; we also offer a wide variety of family-friendly events and lectures on a regular basis; the Museum Store sells items relating to the Ford presidency, other Presidents and First Ladies, and other souvenirs. The Ford Museum opened to the public in September 1981 and is part of the Presidential libraries system of the National Archives and Records Administration, a Federal agency. https://www.fordlibrarymuseum.gov/visit-museum.aspx#museum-exhibits
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Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park
Experience masterpieces of art and nature that will delight your senses at one of the nation's premier horticultural display gardens and sculpture parks in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Ranked in the top 100 most-visited art museums worldwide by Art Newspaper, the leading publication in global art news, Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park has grown to become an international destination. The sculpture program features more than 200 works in the permanent collection sited both indoors and outdoors on the 158-acre main campus. The permanent collection focuses on works by established and emerging sculptors from the Modern tradition to the present. Earliest works date to the second half of the 19th century with masters such as Albert-Ernest Carrier-Belluese, Edgar Degas, and Auguste Rodin. Starting with these masters, the comprehensive presentation includes sculptors from the late 19th century to the present. http://www.meijergardens.org/discover/
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Science Central
Spark your imagination at Science Central! Explore 200 permanent hands-on exhibits and national touring exhibitions. Get fun, educational items in our Gift Shop. https://www.visitfortwayne.com/listing/science-central/223/
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Indianapolis Zoo
Located along the scenic riverbanks in White River State Park, the Indianapolis Zoo is conveniently located near beautiful downtown Indianapolis with easy access to walking and biking trails into the city. The Zoo is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums and the American Alliance of Museums. Run with cheetahs on the African plains, or swim with dolphins in deep blue oceans. Wherever your adventure may take you, the Indianapolis Zoo will be your guide! https://www.indianapoliszoo.com/
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Freedom Springs Greenwood Aquatics Park
Gather your entire family and jump into an explosion of water fun! Greenwood has a new state-of-the-art aquatics facility featuring a lazy river, lap pool, slides, zero-depth entry pool, kids’ play zone, and more!! You will find everything you need for a SPLASHtacular family time! http://www.greenwood.in.gov/division/blocks.php?structureid=21
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Toledo Zoo
With over 5,300 animals representing over 750 species, The Toledo Zoo is one of the world’s most complete zoos—it’s also the region’s top family destination! Let The Toledo Zoo whisk you away, from the Arctic tundra to the wilds of Africa to the tropical rainforest and all points between—all in one great day. During the 1980s The Toledo Zoo introduced many exciting and significant improvements. Foremost among them, the African Savanna provided a stunning recreation of the plains and jungles of Africa. The now world-famous Hippoquarium - the first of its kind in the zoo world - was developed as part of the Savanna. More recently, the Kingdom of the Apes, exhibits for Siberian tigers, Asian sloth bears and African wild dogs have been added, as well as a renovated Aviary and the Primate Forest. Zoo Visitors are also welcomed by a new parking lot, entry complex, gift shop and a ramped pedestrian bridge over the Anthony Wayne Trail. The popularity of the Zoo has increased dramatically over the last decade. Restored facilities, new exhibits and a concerted effort to address the needs of the visitor have resulted in an average attendance of 875,000 people each year, with over 1,000,000 visitors in 1988, 1994, and 1999. Special promotions such as the Lights Before Christmas capture the charm and character of the Zoo and have become traditions for Toledo families. https://www.toledo.com/area-directory/microsite/microsite-toledo-zoo/
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Toledo Museum of Art
The Toledo Museum of Art's architecturally significant campus is the gem of the Glass City. Our Neoclassic, marble-clad main building is joined by a Frank Gehry-designed Center for the Visual Arts and the newest addition, the Toledo Museum of Art Glass PavilionTM. The Glass Pavilion, designed by Tokyo-based SANAA, is an architectural wonder whose interior and exterior walls are made of curved glass panels. Surrounded by green spaces, an expanding outdoor sculpture garden and the celebrated Victorian homes of Toledo's historic Old West End neighbourhood, our campus offers a visual delight for all tastes. The Toledo Museum of Art is world-renowned for its collection of Old Master paintings, decorative arts and glass. In addition, the Museum has growing collections of contemporary, Asian and African art as well as art from antiquity. The Museum is admired for both the quality and comprehensiveness of its collection, which continues to grow through the acquisition process. There is always something new to see at TMA. Free daily glass blowing demonstrations in the Glass Pavilion bring TMA's extensive glass collection to life. Learn how glass is made and how the studio glass movement, born in Toledo, changed the face of glassmaking. https://www.toledo.com/area-directory/microsite/microsite-toledo-museum-of-art/
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National Museum of the Great Lakes
The Great Lakes are not only the most important natural resource in the world, they represent thousands of years of history. The lakes have dramatically impacted the social, economic and political history of the North American continent. The National Museum of the Great Lakes tells the awe-inspiring stories of our Great Lakes through breathtaking photography, over 300 incredible artefacts, a number of powerful audiovisual displays and 40 hands-on interactive exhibits including the 617-foot iron ore freighter Col. James M. Schoonmaker Museum Ship and the historic Museum Tug Ohio. The tales told here span hundreds of years, from the fur traders in the 1600s to the Underground Railroad operators in the 1800s, the rum runners in the 1900s, to the sailors on the thousand-footers sailing today. The theme of the Great Lakes as a Powerful Force runs through all of these stories and will create a lifelong interest in all who visit. http://www.inlandseas.org/
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Detroit Zoo
An animal lover's paradise, the Detroit Zoo is situated on 125 acres with many naturalistic habitats. Major exhibits include the Arctic Ring of Life, Australian Outback Adventure, Great Apes of Harambee, National Amphibian Conservation Center, Holden Reptile Conservation Center, Penguinarium and Butterfly Garden. The Detroit Zoo is home to animals from A to Z, including anteaters and zebras and hundreds of other species in between. More than 2,000 animals representing 230 species of amphibians, mammals, birds and reptiles live in the Zoo’s 125-acres of true-to-life habitats that bring visitors face-to-face with these exotic creatures. https://detroitzoo.org/
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Eastern Market
The largest outdoor farmers market in the nation, encompassing more than 43 acres and founded in 1841, moving to its present site in 1891. https://visitdetroit.com/profile/eastern-market/
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Liberty Center
Located on I-75 in the northern part of the region, Liberty Center is a premier shopping, dining and entertainment destination whose anchor tenants include Dillards, DICK's Sporting Goods and Cobb Luxury 15 & CineBistro. http://cincinnatiusa.com/things-to-do/attractions/liberty-center
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Creation Museum
This one-of-a-kind museum brings the pages of the Bible to life casting its characters and animals in dynamic form and placing them in familiar settings. http://cincinnatiusa.com/things-to-do/attractions/creation-museum
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Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden
Opened in 1875, the Cincinnati Zoo is the second-oldest zoo in the nation and a National Historic Landmark that is consistently ranked as one of the top zoos in the country. http://cincinnatiusa.com/things-to-do/attractions/cincinnati-zoo-botanical-garden
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Cedar Point Amusement Park
Since the 1870s, Cedar Point amusement park has been a summertime tradition for families across the Midwest. The rich history and modern world wonders have created one of the most successful entertainment attractions in the world. Every year Cedar Point hosts more than three million people from around the world. Its popularity continues to grow due to world-recording-breaking roller coasters and amazing attractions. With 68 rides, including 16 roller coasters, Cedar Point has more rides and more roller coasters than any park in the world. Two of its newest coasters are legends. Built in 2003, Top Thrill Dragster is 420 feet tall and reaches speeds of 120 mph! On the other side of the peninsula, the Millennium Force stands 310 feet in the air and reaches speeds of 93 mph along more than 6,500 feet of track. The Magnum XL-200 steel roller coaster features a huge hill of more than 200 feet while the maXair ride, Cedar Point's newest ride, swings guests 140 feet in the air. Riders sit in outward-facing suspended seats that form a giant circle of 50 passengers as their legs dangle freely in the air. Both attractions reach speeds of 70 mph. https://www.toledo.com/attractions/cedarpointamusementpark/
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Columbus Zoo and Aquarium
Every Zoo goer who passes through the turnstile at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium embarks on an adventure to make memories that will last a lifetime. Here at the Zoo, we are passionate about creating lasting and unforgettable experiences for each and every one of our guests. We welcome you to share with us and the world your magical guest moment to inspire others to visit the Columbus Zoo. https://www.columbuszoo.org/home
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Holiday World & Splashin' Safari
Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari are a family theme park/water park combo located in Santa Claus, Indiana. The theme park celebrates Christmas, Halloween, Thanksgiving and the 4th of July with top-ranked roller coasters, rides, live entertainment, games and attractions. The popular website TripAdvisor.com named Splashin’ Safari the #1 water park in the nation, home to the world’s two longest water coasters, numerous family raft slides, two wave pools, water slides and water activities for children. Holiday World offers guests free unlimited soft drinks, free parking, free inner tube usage, free sunscreen and free Wi-Fi. Together, Holiday World & Splashin’ Safari were named the nation’s Top Value Park in a recent issue of Consumers Digest. https://www.gotolouisville.com/directory/holiday-world-splashin-safari/
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Ballpark Village
Ballpark Village is the premiere dining and entertainment district in the region. Located in the heart of St. Louis' central business district adjacent to Busch Stadium, Ballpark Village is the first-ever, sports-anchored, multi-phased/mixed-use development. The $100 million, 120,000-square-foot multi-story project is visible beyond the left center field wall of Busch Stadium, complimenting the energy and excitement of the game day experience. Ballpark village hosts a variety of public and private events 365 days a year, providing patrons a variety of entertainment, food and beverage, and on-site parking in one location. https://explorestlouis.com/partner/ballpark-village/?see_do_category=attractions
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Cardinals Hall of Fame and Museum
Where Cardinals past and present combine to create an unforgettable experience. As the official home for St. Louis Cardinals legends, the Cardinals Hall of Fame & Museum is already considered a "must-see" attraction. Created to honor the players and personalities who have impacted the franchise, the museum features stadiums, players, championship moments and one of the world's largest team-specific collections of artifacts and memorabilia. https://explorestlouis.com/partner/cardinals-hall-of-fame-museum/?see_do_category=attractions
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Wexner Center for the Arts
The Wexner Center for the Arts is one of the nation’s premiere cultural gems--an internationally known contemporary arts center at The Ohio State University. The Center offers exhibitions, performances, films, artistic residencies and educational programs. The building, a landmark of postmodern architecture, houses galleries, performance spaces, a film video theater, a store and a cafe. From the intimate, cabaret-style concerts in our black box theater to large-scale events in or 2,500 seat Mershon Auditorium, the Wexner Center offers a wide variety of performances – dance, theater, jazz, world music, electronica and more. In the Wexner Center Film/Video Theater, you can watch rarely screened movies from near and far, the latest independent features and classics from Hollywood and abroad. https://www.experiencecolumbus.com/listing/wexner-center-for-the-arts-the/5555/
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North Market
There are butchers, bakers and candy makers and fishmongers, greengrocers and restaurateurs. Who grow, catch, find, make, produce, distribute, cook, create and invent their wares. This is a Central Ohio’s authentic public market. Since 1876 its merchants, farmers, and makers have loyally served the community and its visitors. This market provides an authentic Columbus, Ohio experience that highlights the diversity and vibrancy of its community, both economically and culturally by promoting “best-in-class” local, independent businesses. North Market is home to dozens of unique, independent merchants, farmers, and makers who deliver personal and personable service every day of the week. https://www.northmarket.com/
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COSI Columbus
COSI, Columbus’ dynamic Center of Science and Industry, has combined science learning and fun since 1964 with 300-plus hands-on exhibits, Ohio’s largest Planetarium, Giant Screen Theater, live shows and more. And now, through a unique and unprecedented partnership with the renowned American Museum of Natural History, COSI’s offerings are only growing! Located on Columbus’ Scioto Peninsula, COSI is near the downtown core and the Ohio Statehouse. A brand new 6.5-acre park sits directly west of the museum featuring a splash pad, playground, picnic tables, swings and much more. COSI introduced the new Dinosaur Gallery – a permanent exhibit that allows guests to get up close to a full-sized cast of a Tyrannosaurus Rex, 100 million-year-old fossilized amber, an 8 foot titanosaur femur cast and much more. https://www.experiencecolumbus.com/listing/cosi/5658/
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A Christmas Story House
A Christmas Story House, now restored to its movie splendor, is open year round to the public for tours and overnight stays. Directly across the street from the house is A Christmas Story Museum, which features original props, costumes and memorabilia from the film, as well as hundreds of rare behind-the-scenes photos. Among the props and costumes are the toys from the Higbee’s window, Randy’s snowsuit, the chalkboard from Miss Shields’ classroom and the family car. After reliving A Christmas Story at Ralphie’s house don’t forget to visit the museum gift shop for your own Major Award Leg Lamp and other great movie memorabilia. http://www.achristmasstoryhouse.com/
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The Akron Zoo
The Akron Zoo offers 35 acres of exhibits & guest amenities. Create lasting memories and ride the train or carousel, and view 8 animal exhibits. How did the jaguar get its spots? How does the Andean condor carry the sun into the sky? Learn the answers to the legends of these animals and more in Legends of the Wild. Travel through South America with the jaguar and capybara, Madagascar with the lemurs and the Himalayan Mountains with the snow leopards and Himalayan tahr. Come on down to the farm! You can pet, feed and get nose-to-nose with domestic farm animals like Boer goats, Oberhasli goats, Nubian goats, and pygmy goats. Make sure to see our sheep, pig and barn owl too. Buy food for these animals at our granary and then hop aboard a solar powered train, the A&K Wilber Express (April-October). If you are not too tired get lost in Ohio Farmland maze. Navigate the seven seas on the pirate playground, have a picnic in the Wild Prairie Pavilion and enjoy a snack from our Grasslands Café. Make sure you stop by the butterfly waystation and learn about the amazing migration of butterflies. http://www.akronzoo.org/about-the-zoo
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Cherokee Park
Cherokee Park Family Campground invites you to spend your next camping vacation on our quiet, scenic grounds in Portage County, near Akron in Northeast Ohio. The Park campground features gorgeous surroundings, quality facilities, excellent campsite amenities and friendly service. Set on 50 acres, just a short drive east of Akron, Ohio, Cherokee Park offers a peaceful setting with wooded and open space surrounding two small tree-lined lakes and an activities area. Enjoy the beauty of nature and the calming effect of a campfire. You might even spot an occasional deer during your stay. Cherokee Park offers 120 campsites with 30 amp electric and water hookups. Choose a sunny, open RV site or one that is shaded by trees. Pull-thru sites are available for today's larger RVs. Pets are welcome so long as they are leashed and attended. Cherokee Park offers a few family tent sites during the summer for a limited stay. http://cherokeeparkcampground.com/
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Minnesota Zoo
Located just minutes south of Mall of America, the Minnesota Zoo brings education and entertainment to life! The zoo is home to penguins, a lush tropical forest and aviary, marine center, boreal forest, tundra and a family farm. With more than 4,300 animals, you're bound for a new adventure on every visit! The zoo also has banquet facilities and picnic rentals available and group discounts for 20 or more. https://www.exploreminnesota.com/things-to-do/3079/minnesota-zoo
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Science Museum of Minnesota
At the Science Museum of Minnesota, the science that shapes our daily lives comes to life through hands-on exhibits, larger-than-life Omnitheater films, and a world-class collection of fossils and artifacts. https://www.minneapolis.org/directory/science-museum-of-minnesota-arts-entertainers/