The bus swerved like crazy and the sound of machine
gun fire rang through the bus. "Duck, duck," our tour leader
yelled, as we all tucked our heads into our laps.
Then it happened, a giggle. Soon we were all laughing as
we rode through an unusual tour of Chicago's history-The
Untouchables Tour, which takes you back into the time of Al Capone
and John Dillinger.
This isn't a family tour-too much talk of bloodshed, but
it's great fun for couples or older kids. My 17-year-old son is a
big fan of learning anything he can about the gangsters in Chicago,
so this trip gave him a chance to see some of the historic sites
The trip started with our guide entering the bus dressed
the part of the gangster era. He carried a fake gun in his hand,
which he pointed at us and told us all to shut up. We were willing
to clam up and listen when we pulled in front of Holy Name
Cathedral and learned the stories of mobsters killed right where we
were parked. We saw the bullet hole in the church dating back to a
mob hit in the '20s.
We went on to see the Biograph-more mob hit history-and
passed other sites where the building no longer stood, but we were
able to learn about what happened here back in the era of
prohibition. The tour takes about two hours and is conducted
entirely on the bus-good news for us since it was cold and rainy
the day of our tour. While we were driving between sites, the
driver and our tour guides entertained us with raffles and trivia
about Chicago's gangster history. Our tour guides were over the top
with their tough-guy accents and corny jokes, but they were greatly
entertaining. It's a tour that's just plain fun, with a little
history thrown in.
Follow up the tour with dinner at one of the many
restaurants within walking distance and you've got a great way to
ditch the kids and enjoy a little grown-up time.
Liz DeCarlo is the senior editor at Chicago Parent.
See more of Liz's stories here.
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