Our top 19 most-read stories of 2019

It’s hard to believe that 2019 is coming to a close! There is a lot that happened in Chicago for parents this year including the CPS teachers strike, a playful return of Toys “R” Us and much more. Here are Chicago Parent’s top 19 most-read stories of 2019.

1. Midwest destinations to travel to in 2019

Families were on the look out for new adventures in 2019. We rounded up the best Midwest destinations for families to visit. Our guide includes hidden gems, kid-friendly attractions and where to stay for each location. Here’s some great news: we will update this page in Jan. 2020!

2. Dad with brain cancer seeks questions you would ask your parents

Local dad Ned Smith shared his story in our June print issue about his brain cancer diagnosis and how he decided to make a video series to help answer questions his children might ask in the future. Chicago Parent readers helped him with brainstorming some questions. 

3. Toys “R” Us Adventure arrived in Chicago

Fans of Toys “R” Us might miss their favorite toy store, but Toys “R” Us Adventure attempted to create some new memories for your family. The new indoor playground will be open until Jan. 26 and yes, the top floor has a giant ball pit!

4. Where to see waterfalls near Chicago

It turns out our readers are obsessed with waterfalls. We can’t blame you since these breathtaking waterfalls are certainly worth the trip. They also make a great rest stop on a family hike.

5. Mom in the spotlight: NBC5 Meteorologist Alicia Roman

NBC5 Meteorologist Alicia Roman welcomed her adorable son, Nico, in February. She talked to us in our May print issue about what it’s like to be a new mom and you can see how much Nico has grown on Alicia’s Instagram page, @aliciaromannbc.

6. Where to find a Mold-A-Rama machine

Mold-A-Rama machines have been popping in and around Chicago for more than 50 years. If you love collecting the plastic souvenirs, here’s where you can find a Mold-A-Rama machine in Chicagoland. 

7. Dad in the spotlight: The Jam’s Jordan Cornette

We featured local dad, Jordan Cornette, in our February print issue. While he no longer is a host on The Jam, he still works for ESPN. Follow him on his Instagram page @thejordancornette to see what he’s up to. 

8. Best places to play indoor mini golf

The weather in Chicago tends to be unpredictable. Instead of staying at home on the next snow day, hit up one of these indoor mini golf courses instead. Some of them even have awesome glow-in-the-dark experiences!

9. Get your cabooses to these train-themed eateries

If your child goes choo choo over trains, then you’ll have to make a trip to one of these train-themed restaurants in the Chicago area. Check out these amazing train activities as well. 

10. Add this stunning nearby sunflower maze to your bucket list

When sunflowers are back in season, make a trip out to Von Bergen’s Country Market to see the amazing sunflower maze. Check the website when summer rolls in to see when these sunflower blooms are back in season. 

11. Chicagoland playgrounds where kids can climb their heart out

Your little monkeys will go wild at these local playgrounds in Chicagoland. Don’t worry parents, they’re climb-approved!

12. Puppy Dog Pals had an episode in Chicago

Bingo and Rolly made a visit to the Windy City on an episode during the last season of Puppy Dog Pals. Did you watch it?

13. Family-friendly resorts worth the drive from Chicago

If you need a nearby place to relax after the holiday craziness, these family-friendly resorts are calling your name. 

14. Your family guide to a Chicago White Sox game

White Sox fans made the most of their home games this year with our detailed family guide. We will update this sometime before the new season starts in Spring 2020. 

15. Field Museum hosted a free pop-up dino dig

The Field Museum surprised Chicagoans with a free pop-up experience for dinosaur fans. Visitors were able to walk through a replica dig site with real dinosaur bones and scientific tools that are used in the field. 

16. Goose Island got a winter wonderland makeover

The creators of Jack’s Pumpkin Pop-Up gave Goose Island some winter flair with a brand new Jack Frost Winter Village. You can actually visit the pop-up until March 31!

17. Where to take kids during CPS teachers strike

The Chicago Public School teachers strike lasted for 11 days in October and we gave readers a complete list of child care options for their kids

18. The Sesame Street Road Trip stopped in Chicago

The Sesame Street gang celebrated 50 years on television with a summer-long road trip. The Museum of Science and Industry was one of the stops on the Chicago tour and kids were invited to join the fun. To see Chicago highlighted on Sesame Street this season, check out the episode about music called “Mick and the Good Fit.” 

19. Biggest best things for kids to do in Chicago

When 2020 rolls in, expect to see lots of big things with your family! We rounded up the 10 biggest best things for kids to do in Chicago, which was featured in our March print issue.  


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