Navy Pier conquered!

Great family day yesterday at the Pier! We’d never been to Navy Pier so didn’t really know what to expect but turns out that we were very much impressed. The sights, the sounds, the attractions and shopping all blended together to create a very fun and exciting day.

We spent the morning walking around, taking in the sights, and dropping $$$ on attractions and rides. We had a pleasant lunch lakeside then returned to the van to retrieve the unicycles. There were many different types of people and pets using all sorts of conveyances to maneuver around the walkways so we figured we’d just join the throngs and uni from sight to sight. Turns out it was far different than just a pleasant unicycle ride in the sun. The first person we ran into was Ken Shultz, a stage juggler and unicycist performer. We’d heard of Ken before but hadn’t met him. Ken didn’t have his unicycles with him but instead was creating balloon figures for the kids. We talked with him after his performance and promised to email back and forth when we returned home. Hopefully, he’ll find his way out this way for one of our club meetings someday.

The rest of the afternoon, the boys and I rode around on the pier walkways while Mary kept a wary eye out for good deals in the shops. What we didn’t expect were the requests for impromptu performances by Ben and Brad (and sometimes Dad) on the uni’s. It would start something like, “Hey kid, can you do any tricks on those?” Of course the boys would oblige and in no time, a small crowd would form a ring around the show. The boys had a great time with all the cheering and clapping following their performances. Down the pier a ways, there was a D.J. entertaining the crowds with music and antics. Every time we rode by, he stopped his show and had Ben and Brad perform for the crowds. It was great! Ben included jumping over people during those impromptus. By the way, can anyone hula-hoop while riding a unicycle? We didin’t fair too well with the D.J.’s hoops.

At one point, the boys went on one of the rides and left Mary and I to watch the unis. A small group of kids happened to be waiting for some of their friends to get off the ride and noticed the unis. “Hey, can you do any tricks on those?” So I had to oblige. With the boys not available, I jumped on my uni and hopped then rode backwards for a short distance and the kids broke out with wild cheering and clapping. (Must have been Jr. Highers) It was another brief lesson on how very easily impressed people are with the slightest bit of unicycling skill.

As we were winding down our day, we happened across Mike Vondruska juggling and performing on his Semcycle. As we rode up, Mike stopped his show and invited the boys up on stage with him to perform some tricks. They had a great time especially since we finally saw another unicycle on the pier. Again, we exchanged email addresses with Mike and promised to contact him later. Mike and Ken Shultz do a show together where they pass clubs while on six-foot unicycles.

All in all, it was one wonderful day. Can’t wait to go back someday. The only things we missed were a Coker ride along the lakeshore and dinner at Ed Debevics. We had the Cokers in the van and the greatest of intentions to eat at Ed’s but just ran out of time.

Bruce

Sounds absolutely fantastic! You’re so lucky to be able to uni with your kids.

Jerry

What’s Navy Pier? Here are some pictures from a couple of years ago, on a foggy day (no unicycles there):