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Town and Country: Frank Lloyd Wright in Chicago and Wisconsin

August 15-19, 2013


Daily Itinerary (subject to change)

Thursday, August 15
Arrive in Chicago mid-day and check in at the historic Drake Hotel at the top of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile. Enjoy strolling Michigan Avenue, walking the beach at Oak Street, or exploring the neighborhoods of the Gold Coast, until we meet in the mid afternoon to travel to the Art Institute of Chicago. Opening remarks by an Art Institute curator will aid us in assessing the relationship between Frank Lloyd Wright and the Arts and Crafts movement, a theme that will carry through our weekend. A festive opening dinner ends our day. The Drake Hotel D

Friday, August 16
Have breakfast on your own and meet in the lobby of the Drake to set out for our day’s activities. Visit the Gold Coast Historic District — just a short distance from the hotel — for a private tour of the Charnley-Persky House, which displays the combined talents of Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright.

Next, visit The Rookery, an 1898 Daniel Burnham building with a spectacular light-filled lobby remodeled by Wright in 1905. Our Rookery tour includes the Burnham Library, where plans for the 1893 Chicago Columbian Exposition came to fruition under the watchful eyes of Daniel H. Burnham, John W. Root, and Frederick Law Olmsted.

After a group lunch, we proceed south to Jackson Park and visit Wooded Island, with its restored Japanese Garden. This was the site of the Ho-o-den Pavilion at the Columbian Exposition, where some believe Wright first saw Japanese architecture. Our day ends at the Robie House, where we will bask in the late afternoon sunlight with wine and hors d’oeuvres, and hear the story of the Robie House restoration from our restoration architect. Return to the hotel. Dinner is on your own. The Drake Hotel L

Saturday, August 17
After breakfast, meet in the hotel lobby for the coach to Oak Park. Start with an exclusive private tour of the Heurtley House, Wright’s 1902 masterpiece. Next choose from a menu of opportunities – a guided tour of the Home and Studio, a guided historic neighborhood walk, a guided tour at Unity Temple, or a bicycle tour.

During lunch, enjoy a lecture by Frank Lloyd Wright Preservation Trust Curator David Bagnall on the development of Wright’s Prairie style. Then, board the bus for the three-hour drive to Madison, Wisconsin. Enjoy a video, some discussion, and snacks on the bus. After check-in at our hotel, you are free to explore downtown Madison. Dinner is on your own. Hilton Madison Monona Terrace L

Sunday, August 18
Spend the major part of the day at Taliesin, the home Wright built for himself in 1911, and rebuilt twice after two fires. Our visit includes a two-hour house tour, a one-hour tour of the drafting studio and theater, and lunch in the Wright-designed structure that serves as the Visitor Center.

On our return trip to Madison, we stop to tour the Jacobs I House, an early Usonian that has been lovingly restored. In the evening, gather for a group dinner. Hilton Madison Monona Terrace L D

Monday, August 19
The day begins with breakfast and an early tour of Monona Terrace, the convention center originally envisioned by Wright as a Civic Center in 1938 and, after site changes and revisions, finally completed by Taliesin architects in 1997. Enjoy a box lunch.

Then board the bus to return to O’Hare Airport, stopping on the way at the Belvidere, Illinois, Cemetery for a look at Frank Lloyd Wright’s Pettit Chapel (1907), his only structure specifically for a cemetery setting. The small restored chapel embodies many elements of the Prairie style.

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