Every great city has a green and open space set amidst the chaos and hustle and bustle. In New York, there’s Central Park, in Boston, there’s Boston Common and for Chicago, there’s Millennium Park — carved out between sky scrapers that hug the lake shore and constructed over a railroad system that helped transform Chicago into the city it is today. There are so many different aspects of Millennium Park, but on one beautiful summer night, I had the chance to experience the beauty of the Jay Pritzker Pavilion, an open-air concert venue designed by architect Frank Gehry.
It’s a massive structure composed of undulating pieces of stainless steel almost mimicking ribbons gently curled at the ends and billowing in the wind. From the main venue, a stainless steel trellis extends over a fixed seating area and beyond into the great lawn with a sound system overhead that generates acoustics as if you were actually inside a concert hall. On this particular night, we dined on the great lawn with our picnic table and chairs and watched the sun set behind the column of skyscrapers surrounding the park. I can’t recall what the orchestra played that night, but being in the midst of the city in this open-air venue was an experience all its own.