No chicago flower and garden show next year

klimkm(z5)June 26, 2006

Just an FYI: There will be No chicago flower and garden show next year. Don't know much about the details because I never went but once. Tried to go a second year but could not get in because of the crowds.

I think WGN stopped sponsoring it because of budget issues. I had heard this past year a lot of big vendors pulled out anyway.

Anyone else know more details. Please post.

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veronicastrum(z5 IL)


Chicago Garden Show Canceled
June 26, 2006

Due to poor financial results and declining attendance, the Chicago Flower & Garden show has been canceled after sponsor WGN Radio withdrew. For 12 years, the show drew gardeners and other visitors to Navy Pier in Chicago, Ill., and displayed elaborate gardens in addition to holding lectures and competitions.

Kenton Morris, director of the Chicago Flower & Garden Show since its reincarnation in 1994, told the Chicago Tribune show attendance had fallen from 150,000 in 2005 to 143,000 last March. The 2006 show also struggled with a tighter budget from WGN Radio and the loss of some major exhibitors.

The show was also hurt by the withdrawal of support from the City of Chicago, as the Chicago Park District, acting on Chicago Mayor Richard M. DaleyÂs request, organized its own show in ChicagoÂs Grant Park this past May. The advent of the new show caused a number of high-end landscaping and design firms to wait to exhibit in May instead of at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show in March.

The city's show drew 25,000 visitors, short of the 100,000 the Park District had hoped for, Laura Foxgrover, director of the Park District's Department of New Business Development, told the Chicago Tribune. Organizers are still "working toward doing it again next year," said Foxgrover, though no final decision has been made.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2006 at 4:12PM
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spygrrl(5b Chicago IL)

Here is my interpretation.

Daley wanted the CPD to have its own show. Major exhibitors decided to wait and show at the CPD show instead of the CFG show. The loss of major exhibitors has a huge impact, in both cachet and finances. It reduces the visibility and attractiveness of the CFG show, but more importantly reduces the income to the show. This further hurts the show, whose budget was already reduced by WGN.

The loss of attendees could be and is probably due to many factors, whose existence or specific impact can't be stated with certainty. So I'm going to have to leave that aspect alone for this rant.

So a show that attracted ~150,000 people annually, got scrapped in large part because Mayor Daley, whose legacy is his 1st, 2nd and 3rd priority, wanted his city's Park District to have its own show. Which attracted 1/6 of the people of the larger show.

&)@!*^$+#%&@%$^)&* self-aggrandizing jerk.

I love Chicago, but I hate the politicians. Too bad we can't have one without the other.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2006 at 6:11PM
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Oswegian(Z5 IL)

I realize that the mayor is under pressure right now, but IMO, he is the 1st, 2nd and 3rd reason why the Chicago city center is still a lively, viable entity and is not like the problematic downtowns of some other midwestern cities.

In the Tribune today, which is no particular friend of the mayor, there is an article about how many young professionals want to move to Chicago -- from everywhere, not just from the burbs.

We are the top city in growth in that demographic. I am not saying anything against the mayor as long as we keep getting awards, such as "Most Livable City," etc. from national and international groups. Man, it could be so much worse.

Coming from Arizona, where the only thing limiting having a garden show outdoors any time of year is summer heat, I always thought the Navy Pier show was beautiful and creative, but a bit pathetic. All that effort just to make something that fights the climate and location. A later outdoor show makes more sense to me.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2006 at 7:39PM
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Thank you, spygrrl - you summed up my feelings exactly!

    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 7:17AM
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spygrrl(5b Chicago IL)

oswegian -

I do understand your point of view.

My problem with the mayor is, he cares more about his reputation and pleasing those with the money to support him, than in taking care of ALL of his constituents.

The majority of reasonably priced housing in Chicago is GONE to developers. I'm not talking about the small operations who rehab a few buildings or two - I'm talking about entire communities wiped out, where $ 700-$ 800 1-bedrooms are wiped out to make room for $ 1800 1-bedrooms and $ 2500 2-bedrooms.

Let's not forget the "accomplishment" of tearing out the majority of the CHA buildings. Now, yes, they needed to go. BUT. Do you know the figures of how many of those people were actually relocated to a new home? It's pathetic. These people were completely uprooted and given nowhere to go. NOWHERE.

Daley's attitude is to get rid of all the poor people and spend millions of dollars to make everything pretty and shiny. Let's just pretend the poor don't exist! The kicker, for me, is when an area that had never been on anyone's radar started getting "gentrified". It had been downmarket (so to speak) for YEARS. There was a homeless shelter there for almost 20 years. Then a bunch of stupid investors invaded, bought up all the land and buildings around it, and suddenly the yuppies are b*tching and moaning and moving heaven and earth to get the shelter and "those people" away from their precious material possessions.

I'm all for making a city livable. Just not when the rich steal from the poor and kick them to the curbs of the suburbs to do it. And it's not just the "really poor" poor - the lower middle-class (or upper lower-class), aka the working poor, are getting shafted too.

The people being displaced have to go somewhere, and they can't all afford to go to the suburbs. The amount of overcrowding in the undesirable neighborhoods will increase. Pretty soon we'll have the extreme wealth of Gold Coast, the wealth of the wanna-be Gold Coast (aka Bucktown type neighborhoods), and then the worst of the worst where even the developers are afraid to go, with no middle ground in between.

I won't even start on the constant corruption in his regime either. Every couple of months for twenty years, we have on the one hand "I run this place, I have a hand in everything and I'm on top of things, yessir, I'm the man who gets it done" and on the other hand "No, I didn't know anything about that. My employees were doing WHAT?"

And the brazen overnight stealth destruction of Meigs Field, and the revamping of O'Hare which is a billion dollar white elephant that won't actually fix the problems...his hubris knows no bounds.

I'll stop now. This is supposed to be a gardening forum. Sorry I got carried away.

    Bookmark   July 7, 2006 at 8:50AM
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Oswegian(Z5 IL)

spygrrl, Clearly, the same real estate and development practices here are going on everywhere. It's happening in big cities in this country, Europe and Asia. It's not Dailey's ego trip.

Just this past week, the annual list of most expensive cities came out in the Trib. American cities hardly cracked the Top 10. I think there were only a handful in the Top 25. Most of them were in Asia, which has a lot of poor people. I just don't share your view without the big picture.

Fifteen years ago, the two of us were living on $12,000/year. But we worked our way out of that and do much better now; Chicago has been wonderful to us. I liked "pretty and shiny" then, and I like it now. Most people do, I think. In Sandra Cisneros's book "House on Mango Street," she doesn't complain her parents didn't have work. She complains their neighborhood didn't have nice parks.

In addition, when we moved to Chicago from Arizona in 1995, one thing I was thoroughly disgusted about is that for miles, the shoreline of Lake Michigan is completely and utterly dead. It's concrete. I was sad and depressed to go to the lake.

There should be plants and other aquatic life along the shore line. As far as I'm concerned, ripping up Meigs was a blessing. I'd vote for Dailey on that alone. I will be really happy if they achieve the natural wetlands park they are planning.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2006 at 1:07AM
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gardeninggrrl(z5 IL)

Livable??? For whom?? Not me, not anymore - I can't afford it! Sure, young people want to move here - they can rent something nice because it's been a stagnant rental market while blowing their money on doodads and such, while those of us who've scrimped and saved to actually buy something are getting priced out because of the politicians' cash cow, i.e. property taxes. Do you know we have one of the highest property tax rates in the COUNTRY? I already pay $8K for my basic, non-rehabbed, non-trendy-area 2-flat, and just got my assessment that tells me I'll be paying 40-50% more. Huh? How is that supposed to work exactly? Because the business complained about the temporary cap, and we all know business in this city can do whatever they want.

I for one will never vote for Daley "now I'm a micromanager/now I know nothing" again. Or the rest of those clowns. Pretty and shiny is great, but who do you think is paying for it? I've always been the one to say that Chicago is great, that I'd never want to leave here. NOw it looks like I won't have a choice. My block is chock full of buildings that are getting a gut rehab and being resold for $1.3M, so soon the only people who'll be able to afford to live anywhere in the city will be people like my yuppie neighbors with their 3 mega-SUVs parked in the street, their dirt frontyard with the fence around it, and their desire to cut down every tree in the vicinity because of those pesky helicopters. Not exactly ideal.

On the last day to file an appeal for taxes, I opened up the paper and page 2 was an article about the Stroger fiasco and them "deciding" that Stroger's son should get the role. Excuse me? I certainly didn't vote him in. Page 3 - that the City Council is debating banning transfats from restaurants. Is THAT the most important thing they can think of? On the following pages, article after article about the various scandals in City Hall - the patronage hiring, the corruption, the same people making millions on city contracts. I don't mind paying for the flowers - I DO mind paying for all that waste and corruption. And it all goes hand in hand.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2006 at 11:58PM
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The main reason I never went back to that old Chicago flower and garden show is that one year - I paid to park and went in and stood in a line for 40 mnutes that never ever moved. I literally stood in once place for 40 minutes.

After my child began to get antsy I had to leave.
All that fun and I still had to pay parking. I never went back.

As a rule of thumb now, I do not go to anything downtown in the loop unless I can take a train and public transportation. It is WAY too painful to drive and park.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2006 at 2:45PM
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how sad! now there is, like, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING HAPPY AT ALL for me to look forward to until MAY at the earliest! what a total shame. illinois is continuing to sink lower all the time!

    Bookmark   January 26, 2007 at 4:52AM
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Dear ghostbusters - DON'T PANIC! The show is still on, its just been moved to Rosemont. Last time I checked, they hadn't listed the schedule yet, but were still lining things up. There is a website for it, but I can't recall. Check Google. See you at the show!

    Bookmark   January 26, 2007 at 5:40PM
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it's March 10-18 at the Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont.

Here is a link that might be useful: Chicagoland Flower & Garden

    Bookmark   January 27, 2007 at 10:58PM
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gonativegal(zone 5a)

I am so looking forward to the new site. I think it will be alot more transportation friendly for all - city, suburban and even out-of-towners. It's right off the blue line that goes to O'Hare. I live near the city and I always hated the hassle of transfering to a city bus, because the El is about 2 miles away, to get to Navy Pier and the metra was nowhere close either. And yes, the parking was real expensive.

It's also right off the expressway.

And the best part - Mayor Daley won't have his hand in any of this! Whoopee.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2007 at 6:25PM
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