Graph Expo 2008 — No Reason to Stay Home

POETS HAVE long waxed lyrical about spring and its signifying of renewal in life, with birds joyfully singing amid blooming flowers on warm, sunny days, and pixies dropping magic dust everywhere.

Well, it says here that a strong case can be made for the fall season. The days increasingly become intoxicatingly cool. Leaves change colors, turning the countryside into an artist’s canvas. And Green Bay football fans are reminded of the loss of Brett Favre to the New York Jets.

Add one reason to recognize fall as “the season”—Graph Expo.

You need to get away from the plant for a few days. It’s a cheap working vacation—spend a few days in the Windy City, eat at some great restaurants (Shaw’s Crab House rules, raves Media Ink.’s Mark Bonacorso), and come in the Saturday before and catch the Blackhawks play the defending Stanley Cup champion Detroit Red Wings. Like music? There’s the House of Blues and Excalibur, not to mention countless jazz and blues clubs. The list of entertainment options is endless. Anyone who can’t enjoy themselves in Chicago clearly hasn’t left their hotel lobby.

Not necessarily planning to buy anything? That shouldn’t deter you. There are many reasons to hit McCormick Place South when the annual print show comes to town October 26-29. Far too many reasons to list, in fact, but if you need a few to motivate you, here’s a sampler:

|Forget the Passport: Back in late May/early June, the largest graphic arts exhibition in the world filled numerous halls in Germany, as it does every four years. But here’s the rub regarding the quadrennial print festival: U.S. printers weren’t there, or at least most weren’t in attendance. The fact that the U.S. dollar remains weak against the euro and that international airfares have skyrocketed are two good reasons not to travel overseas. But now we’re talking about Chicago, an exhibition hall where it doesn’t take a week or more to see everything.

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