Main Street Attractions at the Custer Fair

We’re setting up our booth tonight! I’m giddy with excitement and also a little trepidation, but regardless of weather, turnout, and any other scary scenarios, I know Custer’s Last Stand will be a great experience.

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I’ve already told you about Custer Street Fair Entertainment, but let me introduce you to my favorite Main Street businesses. If the day becomes too hot or you just want a little shade, these are fabulous places to cool off and browse around.

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We’re just a mile from Chicago!

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From the CTA Purple Line stop you’ll see See Jane Sparkle, a lovely jewelry boutique and Campagnola, a delicious restaurant, albeit not in my regular budget. If you’re looking for a more elegant dining experience rather than Fair Food, Campagnola is certainly a great option.

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To the left (north) upon exiting the station you’ll find Chicago Main Newsstand, where I get my quarterly Where Women Create fix and inspiration from their large craft magazine section. You can find a variety of foreign and specialty publications here.

Walking West from the newsstand onto Main Street, you’ll see Lupita’s at the corner, which has a “Like Water For Chocolate” Menu twice a year. Next to it is the fabulous Wine Goddess, where you should be able to sample some wines, beers and other goodies this weekend. Take some home too! On Saturday, Dave’s Down To Earth Rock Shop will delight kids of all ages with their prehistoric life museum and numerous gems. Don’t miss this time warp!

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Vogue Fabrics further down the street is the fabric-lover’s dream. I love going in to get inspired by the bolts, and rifle through their button bins and check out the latest cord selections.

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Across from Vogue you’ll find Ten Thousand Villages, which has a special sale this weekend just for Custer attendees. The handcrafted gifts in this store will make your conscience and your wallet feel good.

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Virag Jewelers holds some lovely vintage items.

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Crossing Chicago Avenue back over you’ll pass a Subway, and Cross-Rhodes, a Greek restaurant is within your sight to the north. Starbucks aromas will waft your way as you wander east on Main Street. Then you’ll hit my favorite ‘restaurant row’, with Kuni’s, Oceanique and S-Paragon.

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Of course my annual Valentine, Chocolatier Piron, is not to be missed for your Saturday treat (closed Sundays). Oceanique has a special Father’s Day Menu Friday and Saturday. It is definitely a celebratory place (I tend to dine on gift cards there), but so worth the luxurious experience.

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S-Paragon and Kuni’s are more artist budget-friendly. I tend to visit S-Paragon on a regular basis for its ambiance, friendly staff, and delicious food options of Thai, Chinese and Japanese cuisine.

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At the corner you can pop in for a manicure, pedicure, facial or massage at Agora Spa, where my blistery fingers get their pampering and my muscles get loosened on a monthly basis.

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Across from Agora you’ll find my favorite cafe, Brothers K, where I indulge in a mocha, hot cocoa, tea or a smoothie depending on mood and weather. The croissants and pastries go fast in the morning, but hearty quiches and wraps are served in the afternoon.

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For more hearty fare, the Lucky Platter is a fabulous place where I brunch often. I have not had anything I didn’t like on their menu. The Alcove next to it is new, and I’m eager to try their paninis sometime soon. Open til 11, the Alcove is a great option after the evening concerts at Custer.

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Of course the lake is closeby as well. Just keep wandering East for 5 blocks and you’ll find some respite from the crowds.

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This is where I stalk some of my butterfly and dragonfly models.

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I hope you enjoy your day in the neighborhood as much as I love being here. See you tomorrow or Sunday at Custer’s Last Stand. Booth #48 is where the Maraviglia will eagerly await their new owners.

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