Chicago, Illinois, is a hard-working city known for its office and business culture. However, work aside, this city houses some of the best sports venues in the United States. While you might not find them next to the towering skyscrapers, the city is home to some famous sports teams and their impressive stadiums.
If you are a tourist enjoying the sights of Chicago, watching a live sports event is a great way to meet the locals and share the passion for the major sports teams here, including baseball, hockey, basketball, American football, and British football (soccer). First, find your favorite Chicago hotel, then head out to explore the city’s sports venues. Below are my picks for Chicago’s top five venues.
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1. United Center
The United Center, a massive indoor arena, is the home of Chicago’s NBA basketball team, the Chicago Bulls. A statue of legendary former Chicago Bulls basketball player Michael Jordan stands outside the venue, which has a seating capacity of slightly more than 20,000. This venue is also used by the Chicago Blackhawks, an NHL ice hockey team. The arena’s name derives from the sponsorship deal with United Airlines.
2. Soldier Field
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Soldier Field opened in 1924, and with more than 90 years of service, this venue is the oldest football stadium in the United States. Soldier Field is the home stadium of the Chicago Bears. In 1994, Soldier Field hosted the first match of the FIFA World Cup, with Germany beating Bolivia 1-0. With a 61,500-seat capacity, Soldier Field is the largest stadium in Chicago.
3. Wrigley Field
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Wrigley Field baseball stadium, with a seating capacity of 41,000, is home to the Chicago Cubs. This venue is one of two massive baseball stadiums with major league teams from Chicago. Remarkably, the Chicago Cubs played their first game here in 1916, and the venue has already marked its centennial year of service, having been built in 1914.
4. U.S. Cellular Field
The second baseball stadium on this list is U.S. Cellular Field, which was originally called Comiskey Park before the 2003 sponsorship deal with U.S. Cellular. The city’s Chicago White Sox play their home games here in Major League Baseball’s American League. This complex is one of the newest baseball stadiums in the U.S., having opened in 1991. The stadium holds slightly more than 40,000 fans.
5. Toyota Park
Toyota Park is home to Chicago’s only Major League Soccer team. The Chicago Fire Soccer Club formed in 1997, and the team has previously won the U.S. Open Cup. The stadium is the smallest on this list, holding about 20,000 people. The venue is also used for concerts, and the capacity increases to 28,000 when the playing field holds more seating.
For any sports fans heading to Chicago, make sure you pay a visit to at least one, if not all, five of this city’s marvellous sporting venues.