Now in its fourth season, Bizarre Wicker Park tells the fascinating stories of the snake oil tycoon, the beer baron, and the artists, radicals, and mobsters that built and shaped this energetic neighborhood.
The Wicker Park neighborhood is a one of Chicago's most popular destinations and is just two miles North of downtown. The tour begins inside my Victorian parlor at the landmark (and haunted) Flat Iron Arts Building and ends nearby about an hour later, after walking one mile.
Hi, I'm Gordon Meyer. I created the tour and personally conduct each one. I've lived here for fifteen years. I’m a graduate of the Second City Training Center, and I’ve been a magician for decades so you can expect some surprises along the way. Oh, and I’m also very tall.
Bizarre Wicker Park tours are hibernating for the winter and are planned to resume in April 2022, weather permitting. Join my mailing list to be notified when the calendar is updated. Meanwhile, visit BizarreChicago.com for a free self-guided tour of The 606 Bloomingdale Trail, neighborhood history booklets, and other goodies.
“An amazing experience you cannot miss!” — Wicker Park Chamber
“My boyfriend and I played tourists in our own city this weekend and Gordon”s Wicker Park tour exceeded all of our expectations! A fun way to spend an afternoon!” — Maggie
“We’ve done several of Gordon’s tours and they are always entertaining, informative, and fun! We took my parents once and it’s a great activity for visiting family.” — Lindsay
“Thank you for being a great guide on our tour this morning! So much fun! We'll be back for the Bucktown tour for sure.” — Susan
“We had a great time on Gordon's tour last night. We've lived in the neighborhood over 13 years and learned so much! Gordon is a terrific story teller. Highly recommended.” — Debbie
“My husband and I are coming to Chicago for the first time this weekend. Big getaway for us without the kids. I asked a friend of a friend for some ideas and your tour was TOP OF HER LIST!” — Angela
“Gordon is an awesome guide with lots of charisma” — Jordan
“You are a remarkable storyteller!” — Chris
“Excellent tour and Gordon was an excellent host. Loved it!” — Deborah
“The tour was a heckuva show!” — Kyle
“We had an absolute blast!” — Jordan
“I loved that it was a small group; it felt a lot more personable. I really enjoyed learning the history of the area, and Gordon is a wonderful storyteller! ” — Kelley
“” — Adam, Greg, Carol, and many others
Bizarre Wicker Park is best experienced in daylight. If you prefer something at night, consider Bizarre Bucktown instead, which is a candle-lit nighttime tour.
The total size of your group will be between two and twelve people. Group size is strictly limited out of respect for residents, and also to ensure that everyone can easily see and hear.
Tickets must be purchased in advance, walk-ups are not admitted. If your plans are solid, buy your tickets now to avoid disappointment. Tours do sell out, and ticket sales stop approximately two hours before the tour starts.
Once ticketed, tours happen rain or shine. Please check the Wicker Park-Bucktown weather. The tour takes place entirely outdoors.
Bizarre Wicker Park lasts approximately 75 minutes. Please allow extra time in your schedule as the duration of the tour can vary by several minutes depending upon the walking speed of the group and other uncontrollable factors. Important: Please arrive a few minutes early. All tours begin on time and then leave the meeting place.
Full details, directions, and transportation recommendations are provided via email with your tickets. Wicker Park is about two miles from downtown Chicago and is accessible by subway (Blue Line/O’Hare ‘L’ train), Metra (commuter rail), CTA (bus), and of course taxi or ride share.
The tour begins in my studio on the second floor of the Flat Iron Arts building, which requires navigating two flights of stairs. The building does have an elevator, but it's over 100 years old, so sometimes it isn't working. Once we leave the building, the rest of the tour is outdoors on residential and commercial sidewalks. We walk at a brisk pace but make many stops.
History isn't only strange, it's also brutal. Bizarre Wicker Park is for adult audiences and attendees must be at least 13 years of age. Infants and toddlers are not permitted.
Sorry, no, dogs are not allowed on the tour.
The Bizarre Bucktown candlelit walking tour tells the stories of the neighborhood’s iconic factories, churches, and taverns. You'll hear about the hauntings, scandals, murders, and activism that belie the residential streets.
Chicago’s most unique park, The 606, includes an elevated trail made from a former railway. Bizarre 606 is a self-guided tour of strange and obscure history along the Bucktown and Wicker Park portion of the Bloomingdale Trail. Sign up for my mailing list to receive a free copy of the tour that you can take along when you visit the trail.