CHICAGO (WLS) -- Fun is finally back, Chicago! The city's most iconic destinations will reopen their doors after COVID-19 metrics the state uses to monitor the virus recently improved.
The Field Museum opens Saturday to the general public. Members got a sneak peek early.
"As we were driving into the city and seeing the skyline again, it was like, it's been too long since we've done this," said Emy Krauspe of Geneva, who is a Field Museum member. "And now we have a reason to do it."
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The Field Museum will operate at 25 percent capacity, and tickets are recommended before you arrive. Tickets will also be sold at the door.
Alex and Brom Johnson, brothers from Crown Point, also made the trip to Chicago with their father to visit the iconic attraction.
"This is such a nice feeling just to be able to come back to this place, relive all of this. I love this place," Alex Johnson said.
"I'm so excited to be here. I would say exciting because this is a place I went to a lot as a kid," said Brom.
Changes are apparent as soon as you enter the Field Museum. Hand sanitizer is available, stairways are clearly marked with arrows, touchscreen displays are shut off, and dots on the floor make sure you social distance from other guests.
"With 480,000 square feet of public exhibition space, there is plenty of availability for tickets and space to spread out. So it should not impact your experience based on typically what it would be," said Jacob Shuler of the Field Museum.
Shuler said the Field Museum will also have two free days - Monday, January 25 and Thursday, January 28 - for Illinois residents who arrive on-site with proof of Illinois residency.
Next door, the Shedd Aquarium is also getting ready for visitors. They reopen January 30.
"It's really great to see things coming back and see Chicago waking up again," said Kati Murphy of the Art Institute of Chicago.
The Art Institute is opening February 11 to the general public. Shuler said popular exhibits like "Monet and Chicago" and "Bisa Butler: Portraits" will remain open beyond their original closing dates. And now may be the best time to visit.
"Because people aren't traveling as much, people aren't visiting from Europe or Asia, we have a museum that's just for Chicago right now," Murphy said.
If you are looking for all things Chicago, how about The Chicago History Museum. They'll celebrate the city's birthday by opening March 4. They're also finalizing a new exhibit that showcases the work of photographer Vivian Maier.
The Museum of Science and Industry has not announced a reopening plan yet.
Of course, there are still outdoor activities as well, like the ice skating ribbon at Maggie Daley Park. Starting Monday, January 25, the Chicago Park District will have in-person events. You do have to register and wear a mask.
You can view and register for Chicago Park District's in-person events here.
It's time to have fun, Chicago, and have fun safely.
Chicago COVID restrictions: Field Museum, Art Institute, Shedd Aquarium set to reopen as metrics improve
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