Friday, May 31, 2013

Where to Park for Chicago Races

Whenever I'm heading somewhere in Chicago, I always want to know where to park before I leave home. (If I'm driving of course, I know where to park at my local Metra station.)

This is especially true when I'm headed to a race. For one thing, the Metra often doesn't run early enough (or often enough) to be an option on race days. So I have to drive, and I want to give myself enough time to get to the race site and do my necessary business - pick up my bib (if I'm so lucky to have race day pick-up), find my friends, hit up the port-o-potties, get through the gear check line, hit up the potties again, and get in my corral on time.

But, we all know races start pretty early in the morning, especially in the summer when they try to beat the heat.  I'm not a morning person, but I'm sure I'm not the only one who has the best intentions of planning to leave at a time that gives me more than enough time to do what I need to do ... only get to side tracked triple-checking my gear bag to make sure I have everything, running back in to grab a post-race snack "just in case," giving myself one last pit stop, or maybe I just hit the snooze one too many times ... suddenly, I find myself getting on the road at the "last possible time I can leave and still get there on time." Or maybe even later than that.

Usually that means I need to get downtown and head straight to wherever I'm parking my car ... no time to drive around and find the best spot. Often there are road closures to deal with, which can further delay things if you don't have a game plan for parking before you leave home.

So the next time you need to park downtown for a race (or really any other occasion), check out ChicagoParkingMap.com to find tons of options for parking in Chicago. You can zoom in on neighborhoods in and around downtown Chicago, search by address, or click on icons for Downtown Chicago, O'Hare, Midway, or the Museum of Science and Industry. And a couple of my "secret" cheap parking spots are on the map! But, they are secret, so ... sorry. Hopefully this site can help you find your own "secret" cheap spots!

Headed to a race that starts in Grant Park? Tons of options to choose from!
Which one is closest to your favorite brunch spot? 

ChicagoParkingMap.com sponsored this post. But the dramatization of leaving my house on time is my own.