Chicago Diaries

Happy Place in Chicago

In the (second) tale as old as time, life erupted and exploded everywhere and I’m elbow deep in opera rehearsals and performances and things have been happening non-stop. 

Things got so busy that I never had the opportunity to sit down and write about my end of summer adventures. Until now! In October! Stick with me! 

Back in August, I won an Instagram Giveaway (yeah! it sometimes happens!) from the Happy Place for a free visit to the pop up with a group of my friends. 

While the giveaway I won said I would have a “private party” inside the pop-up, it was not private and things were very unorganized when we first got there. None of the workers knew what I was talking about, no one was expecting me, and I had to keep showing people the Instagram dm’s I had between me and someone who ran The Happy Places’s Instagram. 

It was annoying to not get what was promised, but it was free tickets for me and like 10 other people, so I didn’t want to make too big of a fuss or complain.

All of this was actually a great lesson in holding other people accountable for what they say online, advocating for yourself, and realizing that giveaways online are not always as transparent as they seem. 

ANYWAY, it seemed that 2018 was the Summer of pop-up experiences. I went to both 29 Rooms and obviously, The Happy Place and again, I left this experience realizing that it was a big ol’ social media playground and not really interactive art. However, Happy Place, was even more so.

Happy Place was solely backdrops/photo op areas for people to take pictures for their social media sites.
Which can be fun, but it’s definitely not fulfilling. 

Again, this was FREE! So, my friends and I had fun running around taking pictures. Like I said before in my post about 29 Rooms, awareness of what your interacting with can help make the experience better. 

Aaaand here’s a photo dump of all the cute pictures we took that day. 
10/10 would recommend wearing rainbow skirts and laughing with your friends as much as you can. 

Confetti makes everything better, duh.

Part of the giveaway I won included a gift bag with Happy Place stuff inside from the gift shop.

(The Tea: The crew forgot that this was included in what I won and I had to message and ask about this. They tried to tell me that I should have received it when I first arrived and I told them I didn’t and then literally watched as they scrambled and took items from the makeshift merch spot and put things into a bag for me. lol. But hey, I have a cool beach towel for next summer!)

Overall, these pop-up experiences are kind of fun, but I don’t find them to be worth the money they want for tickets. 

The Happy Place was asking for $35 tickets for their pop-up.
To put that into context, the Chicago Art Institute has basic entry tickets starting at $14 for Chicago residents. 

Again, this experience was free due to the giveaway I won, but after going to two of the major traveling pop-up, interactive art installations this summer, I think I’ll just save my money and go to the Art Institute instead. 

Light & Love,

Emma 

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