Posts Tagged ‘ Illinois ’

NFL: Football Returns As Packers Seek To Topple Seahawks


It’s back. That other kind of football. The American one, where they throw the ball, wear all those big pads and make tackles with the velocity of lorries in fourth gear. The NFL never really goes away, because the draft has developed into a huge event with build-up starting the morning after the Super Bowl, and then pre-season training starts months in advance of the regular season. It is remarkable how the NFL has managed to be a year-round sport even though they only play for four months of the year. Maybe that’s why it is such a relief to have regular competition back now.

Thursday night will see the reigning Super Bowl champions, the Seattle Seahawks, kick the year off with a home game against the Green Bay Packers. No team has won successive Super Bowl’s since the Patriots in 2004/05, but the Seahawks were clearly the dominant side in the NFL last season. Although they have lost some talented guys, they look well positioned to reign once more. Continue reading

The Globalisation Of The NBA


Brooklyn Nets kicked off the first global game of 2014 with a resounding 127-110 win over the Atlanta Hawks at London’s 02 Arena last Thursday.

Over the past 35 years the NBA have played 147 games globally, visiting 20 different countries including China, Germany, Italy and Russia amongst others.

Yet the globalisation of the NBA has extended far beyond bringing the game cross continent.  Continue reading

NFL Playoffs: Wild-card Round


The regular season has now ended, and the twelve teams for the playoffs have been settled. While Denver, New England, Seattle and Carolina get a week to rest up, the other eight have to go straight into battle this weekend for the right to play one of them. Here, we examine the fixtures taking place this Saturday and Sunday, and try to predict (in a decidedly unscientific manner) who is likely to emerge, and who will be going home after a one-and-done showing. Continue reading

NFL Playoffs: Runners And Riders


With only two games left to play in the regular season, it seems time for a comprehensive overview of the runners and riders for the playoff berths that are still to be decided. We already have three teams who have secured some kind of playoff game for themselves in January, but this is one of the most interesting periods in the NFL season, with everyone who is still mathematically in with a shout trying to claw their way forward for a shot at the Superbowl. Continue reading

Townsend’s Betrayal Set For Irish Premiere


Two lovers’ worlds will collide, culminating in a powerful and compelling story of sex, love, loyalty, marriage and treachery in the provocative, sensual and gripping new drama, “Betrayal.”

A chance meeting between Sara Hanley (Hannah Ware), a professional photographer, and Jack McAllister (Stuart Townsend), a top attorney, leads to an instant and undeniable attraction. Sara’s husband, Drew Stafford (Chris Johnson), is a successful prosecutor with political aspirations, and the couple have a seven-year-old, Oliver. Unbeknownst to Sara, Jack is in-house counsel to a powerful but somewhat shady entrepreneur, Thatcher Karsten (James Cromwell), and is married to Thatcher’s daughter, Elaine (Wendy Moniz). Elaine, secure in her relationship with Jack, is a smart, determined woman attempting to make her Chicago café a success on her own terms, as well as be a good mother to the couples’ 16-year-old twins, Valerie (Elizabeth McLaughlin) and Victor (Braeden Lemasters). However Sara and Jack both realize something is missing in their marriages, and fight against the realization that they’ve met their soul mates in one another. Continue reading

NBA Eastern Conference Preview Part 2


Having already assessed the Eastern Conference Atlantic Division , Gareth O’Reilly returns to cast his eye over the remainder of the Eastern Championship.

It would be hard to look beyond the Miami Heat for the winners of the Eastern Championship although I can see the Cavs causing a fair few upsets throughout the season as they look to make a return to the play offs.

The Chicago Bulls have their star man back and look like they will return to the force they were before Derrick Rose went down with a torn ACL. When Rose went down over a year ago so did the Bulls play off hopes for two seasons. The fans may have been extremely frustrated with the delay in getting Rose back for the business end of last season but the extra rehab time should mean that the former League MVP should now be back to his very best. Continue reading

City in Focus: Family Friendly Chicago

This summer why not try something different.

Chicago is a beautiful city that has so much to offer for the whole family. Why not soak up the atmosphere of a real American baseball game (more suitable for the older child), shopping down Magnificent Mile, strolling through tree-lined streets and enjoying an original Chicago style pizza. Chicago has beautiful scenery and an authentic American character with accommodating and friendly people. Towering sky scrapers loom over head as it mixes the old with the new. With Lake Michigan right in the city centre you really feel like you have the best of both worlds.

Why not take a family trip to the windy city and enjoy all the delights this city has to offer.

Here are my top five things to do in Family Friendly Chicago:

1 Swim in beautiful Lake Michigan. It is quite strange sitting on the sand with the serene quiet blue water In front and a busy loud road to your left, but it works.

2 The beautiful FREE Lincoln Park Zoo is a delight for all the family. Open from around ten in the morning it is a fantastic way to    entertain the children without spending a fortune. Entrance is free but parking can be quite expensive so take public transport or walk if you are staying in the local area. Lockers and strollers can be provided by the zoo.

3 Let the children enjoy Chicago from a different angle. The John Hancock Observatory stands 100 stories high and is the fourth tallest building in Chicago. It is a great place to take the kids as they can take in all 360 degrees of Chicago from 1,000 ft up. At around $44 for two adults and one child it is a great way to idle away a few hours.

If you are really like to live on the edge why not try the Ledge in the Skydeck experience in the tallest building in the Western hemisphere. The Willis Tower stands at 103 stories (1,353 ft) and offers visitors a chance to stand on a glass ledge that allows you look straight down on the City. At around $46 for two adults and one child it is an experience you as a family will never forget.

4 Navy Pier is the ultimate day out for the children. Fun rides, toy shops and ice cream what more does any young child want! Get the water taxi from Union Station to Navy Pier it is great excitement for all the family and is a perfect way to avoid traffic!

5 Adler Planetarium and the Shedd Aquarium stand in the same campus and are a great way to spend an entire day.

The Adler Planetarium offers exhibitions and special theatre shows for all ages. Planet Explorer is a space exploration exhibition specially designed for ages 3 – 8 so even the youngest of your clan will both learn something new and enjoy themselves.

General admission, not including shows or extras, is $12 per adult and $8 per child (3-11)

The Shedd Aquarium will amaze and delight the whole family as it offers a chance to see very unusual sea creatures. Zebra Sharks, Penguins and Moon Jellies are among the 32,500 animals on show.

General admission works out at $8 per adult and $6 per child.