Five Coffee Shops to Try This Winter

You’ve got five papers to do and you need to get in the zone — but how? If you’re anything like me, you know that a good coffee shop is the cherry on top to the perfect study session. Here’s a list of five super neat coffee shops that’ll appease that perfect study atmosphere we all crave:

  1. The Wormhole Coffee (1462 N Milwaukee Ave)
    1. This little coffee shop is completely ’80s-themed. Into Back to the Future? This is the place for you. They literally have a DeLorean mounted at the back of store surrounded by walls of 1980’s nostalgic memorabilia. Plus, you can get your coffee in a Star Wars themed mug. The wifi password? It’s stored on a 5″ floppy disk.
  2. Bourgeois Pig Cafe (738 W Fullerton Ave)
    1. If you’re a DePaul student, you’ve probably already heard of Bourgeois Pig. Located just a few blocks from the quad, it has an incredibly cozy vibe, sandwiches with literary names (“The Sun Also Rises”, for example), and it’s super peaceful and quiet. It’s the perfect place to completely immerse yourself in schoolwork.
  3. Heritage Bicycles (2959 N Lincoln Ave)
    1. If you combined a Pottery Barn catalog, a bike shop, and a coffee joint, you’d have Heritage Bicycles. This bright cafe doubles as a bike store, offering all your cycling service needs. Plus, their lattes are to die for. If you’re in need of a sunny atmosphere with a chill vibe, head over to this place, stat.
  4. Goddess and the Baker (33 S Wabash Ave)
    1. This all-day cafe is definitely a hidden gem in the loop. Their hot chocolates and banana bread slices are both superb. Also, here’s a tip: their happy hour is from 5 – 7PM every day, which means all their food items are half off!
  5. Wired Coffee House (3508 North Broadway)
    1. Wired is absolutely my favorite place to tune out the rest of the world. A hidden treasure, the place doesn’t look like much outfront, but inside they offer a really easy going atmosphere with plenty of seating and board games to boot. Also, they have a really solid selection of international coffees!

Now that you have this short and sweet list, go out and study, DePaulians! These coffee shops definitely won’t disappoint!

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10 Fun Things to Do in a Cold Chicago

I don’t know about you guys, but winter isn’t necessarily my favorite season. I can deal with autumn — in fact, I really like autumn because of the mid-60’s temps — but winter in Chicago is pretty brutal. To help ease the chilly pain Chicago brings along with it during the cold months, here’s a list of 10 fun (and totally cheap) things to do in a frost-bitten Chicago:

 

1. Ice Skate at Millennium Park

  • Who doesn’t love ice skating? I mean, if it’s cold, you might as well be doing something fun with the cold, right? From November to March, Millennium Park offers free ice skating daily. Bring your family or a couple of friends to good ‘ol Millennium and enjoy a day of gliding (or, in my case, falling) next to a bunch of super cool Chicago monuments.

 

2. Journey Through the Lincoln Park ZooLights

 

  • Listen, I know Lincoln Park Zoo is next to Lake Michigan and I know that means the wind chill makes the cold that much worse, but ZooLights is worth it. First of all, it’s free, and secondly, you can walk around the Lincoln Park Zoo looking at a bunch of really impressive light sculptures while Mariah Carey’s “All I Want for Christmas Is You” plays in the background.

 

3. Visit the Art Institute

 

  • First of all, the Art Institute is indoors and that means warmth, but secondly, it features a bunch of timeless pieces of art from all over the globe. If you haven’t been, it’s a definite must. Dedicate a day to it at least, because you’ll get absorbed in all the artwork pretty quickly. Plus, you can use your Demon Discount here! It’s totally free for DePaul students.

 

4. Explore the Chicago History Museum

 

  • Like the Art Institute, the Chicago History Museum is indoors and toasty (because that’s the most important part, right? Just kidding… kind of). If artwork isn’t really your thing though, the Chicago History Museum is the place for you. Demon Discounts apply here too — free admission!

 

5. See the Garfield Park Conservatory

 

  • The Garfield Park Conservatory is one of my favorite places in Chicago, honestly. If you’re constantly seeking some sort of image of thriving vegetation and life, take a day trip here. It’s free and the whole thing’s under huge, beautiful glass greenhouses.

 

6. Shop Around Water Tower Place

 

  • Water Tower Place is one of those shopping malls you expect to go into for 30 minutes and, in reality, you end up staying for about 3 hours. No shame, though — the place has about 95 attractions (including Food Life which is a definite must).

 

7. View the Macy’s Window Displays

 

  • The Macy’s Window Displays have, for me, been the quintessential epitome of the holiday season. Even though the holiday’s are over, stop by and check them out. It’s outside, but with the months of hard work that goes into them, totally worth it.

 

8. Catch a Movie at AMC Theaters

 

  • Going to the movies is, without a doubt, my favorite thing. Food, comfy chairs, and a giant movie screen all in one place? Yes, please. Best part? Demon Discounts apply at AMC Theaters too. Also, Star Wars: The Force Awakens is out right now and if you haven’t seen it you really, really need to. It’s amazing.

 

9. See a Show at The Second City

 

  • I don’t know a single person who doesn’t like laughing and really funny people. Fortunately, Second City provides both of those things, and it’s accessible via Demon Discounts. Enjoy a night full of giggling and stop by to see some of Chicago’s funniest.

 

10. Grab a Cup of Hot Cocoa at Mindy’s Hot Chocolate

 

  • Ok, I’m a bit of a hot chocolate aficionado, and Mindy’s Hot Chocolate is some of the best I’ve ever had, ever. Guys, there’s 9 different types of hot chocolate (I didn’t even know that was possible?!); from the classic Old-Fashioned to Eggnog to Affogato (which has this coffee cocoa ice cream that I literally dream about on a daily basis). Plus, getting a nice, warm cup of hot cocoa is great way to end a day full of activities.

 
Sure, Chicago’s cold weather isn’t something to get super excited about, but the activities provided by the city during its colder months are, without a doubt, some of the best. Get out there and enjoy it!

Chicago: The Best City to Spend Your Summer

By: Christina Han

In recent news, Chicago was ranked as the number one best college town to spend your summer in, which only makes sense. What makes Chicago so great is that the summer is a beautiful reward for the long and grueling winters it’s infamous for. If you were to ask any Chicago native what their favorite part about Chicago is, they would most likely answer with “the summer.” The second it gets a tad bit warmer, you instantly see a lot more people walking in the streets, going for a jog, or walking their dogs. It is always nice to come out of hibernation after a long and cruel winter. Granted, Chicago is the third biggest city in the United States, so there’s a ton of things to do during the summer.

When it comes to outdoor activities, Chicago has a wide variety of options. Lake Michigan, for one, is open during the summer. When on the beach, you will find lots of people laying out under the sun, playing beach volleyball, and having picnics. What’s so cool about Chicago’s “beach” is that you get the entire skyline while lying out in the sand, which you don’t see every day (or really anywhere else). If not on the beach, people are most likely walking, jogging, running, rollerblading, or biking by the lakefront (this is when you’ll probably realize just how many people were deprived of their daily exercise with the amount of people that’ll be out and about).

Aside from the beach, there are plenty of places near the lakefront that are prime destinations and, not to mention, free! The Lincoln Park Zoo, for example, is very close to the beachfront and also includes free admission! Just like the beach, it’s an interesting sight to be looking at giraffes and lions while simultaneously being able to see the city skyline in the background. Right next to the zoo is the Lincoln Park observatory, which is also free. It’s home to hundreds of different plants and flowers from all over the world! It’s a wonderful sight to see in the summer, especially since all the flowers are in full bloom.

Aside from activities held in Lincoln Park, there are plenty of events that will be held all across Chicago. When it comes to food festivals, there are more than you can imagine. The biggest and most popular is “Taste of Chicago” that takes place downtown in Grant Park and showcases the diversity of Chicago’s dining community. It’s a 3-day long festival, which includes live music performances and hundreds of different restaurants from all over Chicago showcasing their awesome food! Also, this happens to be the world’s largest food festival and attracts visitors from all over the world.

Along the lines of food, there are various food festivals that happen in different neighborhoods of the Chicago region. At the beginning of June, there’s the “Flavors of Mexico” festival held in Little Village. The focus of this festival is the authenticity of Mexican food, which is highly adored by most Chicagoans. During mid-June there’s the “Taste of Randolph”, which focuses on the neighborhood of the West Loop and all of the famous restaurants near the location. This is an event to promote the best restaurants of the West Loop region. This is just a taste of the food festivals Chicago has to offer – there’s even more festivals to be found online!

Aside from the numerous food festivals, there are plenty of music festivals all across the city. It’s great because there’s a huge musical variety (EDM, Indie, punk, etc). Chicago’s biggest music festival is Lollapalooza, which takes place this year from July 31st-August 3rd. Each year, Lollapalooza brings in the biggest names of music, from Eminem and Kings of Leon, to Drake! The festival attracts more than 160,000 people every year. Another big music festival is Spring Awakening, which specifically caters to EDM and House fans. It’s held in Soldier Field and brings in world famous DJ’s, including Tiesto, Alesso, and Calvin Harris. These two festivals are primarily the two big deals of the summer, but there are plenty others scattered around the city with smaller names that can be just as fun!

In a wonderful city like Chicago, there are plenty of things to do. With the summertime being something that everyone cherishes before the brutal winter, there are more than enough things to do and see. No wonder Chicago was ranked one of the best college towns to spend your summer!

Spring Break Has Begun, Now What To Do?

By Blogger: Jacki Licciardi

Spring break is finally here…hallelujah!

Now all we need is the weather to realize that spring is here and we will be all set. I mean really though, the first day of spring was this past Friday. I don’t know about you but I recall wearing a scarf and boots to class. Don’t get me wrong, I am a huge fan of fall and winter style but I am more than ready to move on. Oh and did you see all this snow today? Not cool, Mother Nature. Not cool.

Turning in my final literature review during finals week, felt similar to that feeling I get when I am running late and there is no line at Starbucks. Thank you!

With finals over and spring break underway – I finally have time to do whatever I want, right? Well, kind of. I plan to use this brief time off from class to catch up on some much needed me time. I have realized that a large portion of my days are consumed with tending to others (I do enjoy helping others, after all I am studying counseling). But if I don’t take care of myself who will? So I plan to use this week-ish to do things that help me feel “fresh” – fresh means literally feeling refreshed. Kind of like that feeling after you take a good afternoon nap. I usually feel great, similar to what I imagine a child feels like after they nap and need a good 10-20 minutes before anyone talks to them.

So some of the things I plan to do during spring break include finishing the book Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham, workout (discovering the workout playlists on Spotify has changed my life- check em out), take a few naps, spend the weekend in New Orleans, paint my nails orange or yellow, and final celebrate my birthday!

My list of things to do may seem lame-with the exception of New Orleans- but what’s most important is that it’s my list. So I encourage you to make a list of your own. At least do one thing each day during break that is just for you! Whether you are going on vacation or staying around campus; doing one thing per day is more than manageable. Like taking a nap really won’t be that difficult 😉

Hopefully the weather gods (whoever they are) will figure out it’s springtime and bring us some beautiful weather during break. Just remember to enjoy yourself because you earned it after a long week of finals.

HappySpringBreak

Dancing to Help The Kids: For All The Right Reasons.

By OSI Blogger: Lindsay Ritenbaugh

In April 2014, I completed my first Dance Marathon—and the third ever DemonTHON at DePaul. 428 registered dancers, 34 directors and assistants, 26 Morale captains, the overall advisor, and I stood 24+ hours For The Kids at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. These incredible students raised $214,050.46 this year, more than $468,000 to date, and have become the 17th most successful Dance Marathon in the nation! But more than that, they’ve raised awareness For The Kids and families with pediatric illnesses in the Chicagoland area. They did so with their opening video (which conveniently showcases the beautiful city in which I live). They did so with each Morale dance at the top of every hour. They did so with every event held on campus and throughout the Chicagoland area throughout the year. They did so through successful social media efforts before and during the Big Event.

I came to DePaul to work as a Program Coordinator for Student Organizations, expecting to supervise student employees in the office and maybe advise a student group. I had no idea how much the latter would impact my life and DePaul experience. During my first month on the job, I reached out to Edwin, the current DemonTHON advisor and offered my help if needed. I later met with Blair, the executive director, who asked if I’d be interested in advising the Morale team. The high school cheerleader/folk dancing camp counselor/karaoke extraordinaire in me was ecstatic. Throughout the year the advisors met weekly with Morale captains, their amazing director and assistants, the overall committee, and management core committee to prepare for this past weekend’s culminating events. Still, I completely underestimated what it would feel like to complete a dance marathon from start to finish. My feet were throbbing and tears (both happy and sad) fell on multiple occasions, but I would will do it all again in a second.

All of my dark hours, when I thought I couldn’t keep standing, paled in comparison to what the miracle children and their families face during treatment. I just thought of faces like sweet Mia Gurevitz and how DemonTHON serves them directly. Wouldn’t you keep standing if you saw this face?

demonthon

DemonTHON: I’ve heard it said that people come into our lives for a reason, bringing something we must learn. And we are led to those who help us most to grow if we let them. And we help them in return (Wicked, 2004). Your ability to build campus affinity and fundraise For The Kids is a force to be reckoned with. And like St. Vincent de Paul reminds us, “There are two things to be considered here, namely, not only to do good, but to do it well.”

Fundraising for DemonTHON 2015 is continuing from today until the end of our Big Event on April 24-25, 2015! Every penny counts. Register or donate today!

If you’ve never experienced a reveal for a Dance Marathon, please watch this immediately: DemonTHON Reveal 2014

…Lindsay Ritenbaugh is the Program Coordinator for Student Organizations at DePaul University in the Office of Student Involvement. Among dancing and fundraising For The Kids, she enjoys watching Gilmore Girls on Netflix and playing trivia!

How to Survive Chiberia 2015.

By OSI EDGE Team member: Christina Han

CHIBERIA

Chicago is infamous for below freezing temperatures and piercing cold winds.

Coming from someone who absolutely hates the cold, here are some tips on how to keep warm.

  1. Get a good quality jacket that includes the following:
  • Down fur- fur from birds that traps air and helps insulate
  • Hood- protects you from the wind
  • Waterproof features

At DePaul, you will notice that a majority of the students will wear jackets from brand names such as North Face, Canada Goose, and Patagonia.

Since these jackets come with these big brand names, they tend to be a lot pricier. Although these jackets are definitely pricier, they often come with good warranties and guaranties if something were to happen to them. In addition, they do come with lots of features and are supposed to keep you very warm which is why people think they are worth it.

These types of coats can be found at: northface.com, canadagoose.com. Patagonia.com

  1. Wear lots of layers:
  • The more layers you wear, the more heat you will trap
  • Better to have more layers than none at all
  • Easy to take off and put on when you get to class
  • For the top half: wear a long sleeved shirt under a sweater, and maybe even another on top of that
  • For the bottom half: wear leggings under jeans, long wool socks, long underwear
  • Highly recommend fleece lined leggings!

Most people that have not experienced the freezing temperatures of Chicago don’t necessarily understand the concept of layering and see it as unnecessary. However each layer does count and makes a huge difference on how warm you will be. It is better to be safe than sorry.

 Can be found at: Amazon.com

  1. Gloves/mittens:
  • Invest in a quality pair of gloves
  • Hands get cold very easily especially when exposed to freezing temperatures
  • Nowadays most gloves are designed with a feature that allows you to text instead of having to take off your gloves to use your phone
  • Make sure the elastic at the wrist is tight
  • Polyester, spandex, and fleece offer good warmth

In the society we live in today, people can barely go 2 minutes without their phone, even during freezing temperatures. Now with gloves that are phone friendly, people are able to use their phone accordingly without having their fingers and hands freeze off.

Can be found at: Northface.com, target.com, eddiebauer.com

  1. Scarves:
  • Usually knitted or wool
  • Put on before your jacket
  • Wear around your face as well to act almost as a mask
  • Large variety of styles

Scarves are a great way to accessorize while also keeping warm. At DePaul, you can find a large variety of styles when it comes to scarves. The most popular style is the blanket style scarf. They are large, knitted scarves that are big enough to be a blanket but instead worn around the neck. They often come in patterns such as plaid, tartan, and basic colors

Can be found at: Zara.com, Zappos.com, H&M.com

  1. Hats:
  • Knitted
  • Fleece
  • Fur trimmed
  • Ear flaps (prevents frost bites on the ears)

Hats are also an easy and a fashionable way to accessorize. They come in very handy on bad hair days as well. At DePaul you will find a wide variety of different hats. Most of the time you can find students wearing beanies, DePaul knitted beanies especially and hats with earflaps.

Can be found at: DePaul bookstore, Amazon.com

Chicago is mostly known for its monochromatic and minimalistic style. Especially in the wintertime, there are not a lot of vivid colors that can be seen. People will most of the time wear black on black more than anything else. Because Chicago is such a fast paced city it is also difficult to keep up with all the latest trends and styles. But with the help of the Internet, there are hundreds of fashion blogs that exist for the sole purpose of keeping up with all the latest fashions.

Now that you know how to keep yourself warm, here are some tips and trends to help you stay fashion forward during this winter:

For girls:

  1. “Athleisure”- clothes that are appropriate for either leisure or athletic activities
  2. Cozy statement Coats
  3. Winter white sweaters
  4. Knee high boots
  5. Black turtle necks
  6. Tuxedo blazer
  7. Sweater dress
  8. Camel coat
  9. Shearling Coat

For guys:

  1. Corduroy pants
  2. Striped sweaters
  3. Bomber Jackets
  4. Slim fitted pants
  5. Camel coat
  6. Plaid
  7. Turtleneck sweaters
  8. Corduroy trousers

…Christina Han is currently in her first year at DePaul and is interested in communications and marketing. Christina is also a member of the OSI EDGE Team, where she will be planning an event with other members for Earth Week at DePaul!

A Look Behind the Curtains: DePaul Activities Board (DAB)

OSI Guest Blogger: Laurel Pierce

Being a part of the DePaul Activities Board is like peeking behind the curtains during a performance.

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You get to see an entirely different side of events that you probably haven’t seen before, and it’s a fantastic experience. DAB is made up of 7 committees, 6 of which regularly plan events for the DePaul student body. Each committee has an area that they focus their events on, like music, speakers, comedy, and more! Each event follows the same general process to be created.

We start with an idea. It may be an idea that a coordinator has, something that comes up at a committee meeting, or anything we’ve discovered at NACA (the National Association for Campus Activities, they hold a conference every year that brings hundreds of vendors for colleges to see!) There are 8 coordinators on the Activities Board, and 6 of them plan events (the other two are our social media and marketing coordinators). Each coordinator creates multiple events per quarter. Then we discuss the ideas at our committee meetings and decide what will happen at the event.

 After the idea is created and the details are laid out, it is the coordinators job to begin working on the logistics of the event. This means that if we are bringing any sort of performer, like a musician, speaker, or comedian, they need to contact a middle agent to find out if they are available.

If they are available, the coordinator will then start the process of contracting the performer. If we are bringing in an outside vendor, as in a company that brings anything that is not a performer, we will follow a similar process of requesting availability then beginning a contract. Finally, if the event does not require a contract, the coordinator needs to find out what supplies they need and how much they cost.

Next it is also the coordinators job to fill out an Event Request Form for each event they want to put on. This form lays out all of the nitty gritty details about the event… like time, place, supplies, and anything else that will happen at the event! We’re allowed to submit as many Event Request Forms as we’d like so there are plenty of options.

The form goes to our E-Board who reviews it and either approves or denies it based on factors like cost, value to the community, and if the event is logistically possible. If it gets approved, the event goes on our schedule! Not every single event gets passed, but that is why we’re allowed to submit so many Event Request Forms!

Once the coordinators hear back from the E-Board on which events got passed, they let their committees know what events will be happening the following quarter.

As the date of the event approaches, coordinators begin to discuss with their committees on how best to facilitate their events. They also will ask committees to brainstorm creative ways to market and promote their events, to maximize the amount of attendees!

The coordinator will collaborate with the social media and marketing coordinators to find unique ways to reach the students.

We do social media contests, creative posters, promotional items, and more.

On the day of the event, the coordinator will have already gathered volunteers for certain tasks. We also usually do some last minute promotion by walking around the event’s location letting people know what’s going on!

The level of involvement of DAB members during the event depends on the event itself. If we have a speaker, DAB members ensure that attendees swipe in and are respectful of the speaker. If it’s a more involved event like a trivia night, the DAB members would play a greater role in helping facilitate the event.

Once the event is over, the coordinator fills out a Post Event Review Form, or PERF. This asks the coordinator to provide final details on what they spent on the event, what went well or didn’t go well, and other pertinent information about the event’s execution. After the PERF is filled out, the event process is complete!

There are a lot of details that go into the planning of DAB’s events, but we all love working together to create a great experience for DePaul students.

As an organization we strive to put on a wide variety of events that all types of students can attend and enjoy. We are always trying to explore new ideas, but keeping traditionally popular ones as well. As our slogan says, we are by students, for students.

Interested in planning events for our student body?

Well, great news…ALL are welcome at our General Board meetings every Monday at 5pm in Student Center room 220! New members are welcome at any time during the school year. If planning events isn’t your thing, one of the best things about the events that DAB plans is almost all of them are free for DePaul students, with the exception of FEST and the Blue Demon Dance.

DABPhoto

….Laurel Pierce is currently a sophomore studying both Public Relations and Organizational Communication. She has been involved in the DePaul Activities Board since the first day of her freshman year. Laurel is this year’s Blue Demon Week Coordinators for DAB. Her responsibilities include planning two spirit week events, and also planning the Blue Demon Dance. She is also a part of the Chi Omega Fraternity here on campus!