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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

Slocum in Chicago MPSA 2005

Page address: Travels/Slocum Chicago MPSA 2005.html

Chicago, Illinois: MPSA 2005

I attended the Midwest Political Science Association conference in Chicago April 7 through 10, 2005.  I really love Chicago, and savor its treasures in architecture, restaurants, sights and limitless things to do.  At the conference, I was chair and discussant on a panel on "Inter Group Racism."  My next trip to Chicago will be in April 2006 for the Midwest Political Science Association meeting.  It will be difficult to wait that long.

urban canyon

An "urban canyon" effect caught at just a right moment by my digital camera, while riding the elevated CTA train ('El') from Chicago Midway Airport to the Palmer House Hilton hotel, Thursday, April 7, 2005.  We're looking eastward toward Lake Michigan.

chicago cultural center

Did I mention liking Chicago's architecture?  This is the Chicago Cultural Center on Washington Street - at one time it was the public library.  No matter what is housed in this building, it is an architectural treasure.

state street bridge

This is looking from the State Street bridge toward the Wabash Avenue bridge, both of which cross the Chicago River.  The building topped with the dome is the Wrigley Building.  Saturday, April 9, 2005.

skyline shot

I took this skyline shot from one of the lakefront parks, Sunday, April 10, 2005.   The tall white building on the right is the Aon Building, which at 80 stories tall is only the fourth tallest building in Chicago!

skyline shot

This photo and the previous one I took while out running to the lakefront.  The curved path is part of Chicago's magnificent network of lakefront trails for bikers, walkers and runners.  This is behind (on the lake side of) the John G. Shedd Aquarium.

skyline shot

On Saturday, April 9, I took a cruise from Navy Pier out into Lake Michigan, where I threw myself full-throttle into a relentless quest for the best Chicago skyline pictures I could get!  Here's one of the finalists.  The tall building in the center is the John Hancock Building - not the city's tallest building, but in second place, after the Sears Tower.

skyline shot

On this 30-minute cruise, we went out into Lake Michigan beyond the breakwater, which was designed to protect the city from the worst of the storms that sometimes thrash the Great Lakes region.  These storms are usually at their worst from October to December, during the 'unstable season' on the Great Lakes.  During the fall and early winter, the lake water, with its stored heat from the preceding summer, is warmer than the surrounding land areas, which cool more quickly.  When autumn low pressure systems reach the Great Lakes, the stored heat from the lake water can cause them to intensify, sometimes explosively.  One of the worst Great Lakes storms known, in November 1975, spawned hurricane force winds and ferocious waves that sank the Edmund Fitzgerald ore carrier, claiming 29 lives.  Singer/songwriter Gordon Lightfoot commemorated this tragedy in his 1976 hit song The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Navy Pier

I took this picture of Navy Pier as the cruise boat approached returning to it.

John Hancock Building observatory]

After my Lake Michigan cruise, I visited the John Hancock Building with its observatory on the 94th floor.  This is looking toward the south from the observatory.

Hancock observatory

This is the view looking northward from the Hancock observatory.  The high-rise condominiums that line Lake Shore Drive are some of the city's most prime (and expensive!) real estate.

welcome reception

I'm at the MPSA welcome reception, Thursday, April 7, with Connie Jurstad (left) and Suzanne Leland (center).  Connie and Suzanne are both graduates of MSU's master's degree program in political science.  Connie is pursuing her Ph.D. in political science at American University in Washington, D.C.  Suzanne completed her Ph.D. at the University of Kansas and now is an assistant professor of political science at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte - in my hometown, no less!

Dr. Slocum and Dr. GR

On Saturday evening, April 9, Dr. Scott Granberg-Rademacker and I had dinner at Salpicon, a top Mexican restaurant.  Joining us were Dr. Avra Johnson and her graduate school friend, Dr. Sue Crawford (Creighton University).  My late father was a 'regular' at Salpicon during the years he lived in Chicago.

tiger shrimp

My tiger shrimp entree at Salpicon, garnished with white rice, avocados and zesty sauces.

art at salpicon

This and other colorful art works grace the walls at Salpicon.

At Palmer House Hilton

After dinner, Scott and I were walking through Windsor's, the hotel bar at the Palmer House Hilton.  We ran into Dr. Mike Lipari (blue shirt) whom I had gone out on the town with the previous evening.  And, we ran into Dr. Kevin Smith (left), who was Scott's dissertation advisor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.  We could not resist joining them for drinks.

Chicago from above

Goodbye, Chicago!  Until next year . . .

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