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Friends of Meigs Field
Dedicated to the restoration, preservation & improvement of Chicago's downtown airport



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The Chicago Grand Prix at Meigs Field
(click to enlarge)

Key Benefits

bulletMeigs Field Open House
bulletChicago Grand Prix
bulletExpanded Chicago
  Air and Water Show
bulletFly-ins of Exotic Aircraft
bulletAerobatics Exhibitions
bulletFishing tournaments
bulletOutdoor museum events
bulletBicycling excursions
bulletAir-Sea Rescue Demonstrations


Events, Activities, and Programs

One of the keys to this proposal is that it offers to the public a wide variety of experiences unavailable in any other venue in Chicago. A rich calendar of programming, including special events, activities, and programs will complement the new attraction, bringing opportunities for enjoyment, recreation and education to all Chicagoans.

The juxtaposition, on a peninsula, of lake frontage, harbor frontage, a yacht club, a sailing school, a functioning airport, an aviation museum with exhibition and presentation space, a beach, and open green space provides a unique opportunity for fascinating programs and special events for Chicagoans.

A year-round schedule will provide a constant source of entertainment and events, many of which can be held nowhere else, yet all located on the Museum Campus in the heart of downtown Chicago.

Below is a listing of a few of the possibilities:

bulletMajor Public Events (over 10,000 attendees)
bulletMeigs Field Open House -- Voted Chicago's third most popular street festival in a Chicago Tribune readers’ poll, the Meigs Open House includes static displays of vintage, military, and state-of-the-art aircraft, aerobatic flying, and aviation-related presentations and informational booths. An expanded Open House will incorporate the new Chicago Air Museum and Aircraft Restoration Annex.
bulletThe Chicago Grand Prix – The unobstructed asphalt of an improved Meigs Field in proximity to the center of a major U.S. city will make an ideal venue for auto racing annually. Other Great Lakes cities regularly host similar auto racing events, and Grand Prix organizers have already approached the City of Chicago about the possibility of conducting annual races at Meigs, bringing thousands of visitors to the city and millions in tourism. Once a year, Meigs Field’s runway will close for a long weekend to become the “speedway of downtown Chicago”.
bulletChicago Air and Water Show – Chicago’s annual Air and Water Show is the largest free air show in the world, attracting nearly 2 million attendees annually. An improved Meigs Field will play host to civilian air show acts, and provide an opportunity to meet and greet air show performers personally. The addition of secondary aerobatics exhibitions at Meigs will provide a larger venue for the event, presenting the event to a wider audience, reducing congestion on the north side, and spreading some of the economic activity to the south side.
bulletOther flight-oriented events
bulletMedium Public Events (500-10,000 attendees)
bulletFishing tournaments
bulletOutdoor museum events
bulletBicycling – At least annually, the runway at Meigs will be closed on a temporary basis, similar to Lake Shore Drive, to incorporate large group bicycle rides like the Chicagoland Bicycle Federation’s “Bike the Drive” event and the “L.A.T.E. Ride,” providing the public with the opportunity to experience and enjoy this unique piece of lakefront aviation history first-hand.
bulletBoat exhibitions
bulletAir-Sea Rescue Demos
bulletAviation College and Career Days -- Aviation colleges and employers will be invited to Meigs to expose the youth of Chicago to the fascinating career opportunities of aviation.
bulletSmall-scale Public Events (under 500 participants)
bulletCamp Outs – Periodically, various youth groups like the Boy and Girl Scouts and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Chicago will host overnight camping on Northerly Meadow and Lookout Point.
bulletPing Pong Tournaments
bulletMonthly Programs & Activities
bulletYoung Eagles flight rallies – The Friends of Meigs Field will continue to hold monthly flight rallies under the auspices of the EAA’s Young Eagles program to introduce Chicago children to the wonders of flight.
bulletRegular aerobatic demonstrations
bulletPlane-of-the-Month changeover – Every month the arrival of a new aircraft for the Chicago Air Museum Plane-of-the-Month Pavilion will create excitement and activity on the Museum Campus. This “changing of the guard” will become a regular event that aviation followers will look forward to on their calendars.
bulletMonthly lectures and historic aviation celebrations
bulletEarth Sea and Sky Picnics
bulletAviation Safety seminars
bulletWeekly Programs & Activities
bulletSailing and boating schools
bulletScuba and snorkeling lessons
bulletCross-country skiing lessons
bulletGroup Meetings
bulletDaily Programs & Activities
bulletSkyline Aerial Tours
bulletRestaurant and Gift Shop

Copyright © 1995-current year
Friends of Meigs Field
P.O. Box 59-7308 , Chicago, IL 60659-7308
Voice Mail: 312-458-9250   FAX: 847-966-6168
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