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Already Missing Obama? Tour The Places In Chicago Where He Got His Start

By Heather Cherone | November 22, 2016 5:21am | Updated on November 25, 2016 11:33am
 President Barack Obama taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago before becoming president.
President Barack Obama taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago before becoming president.
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File Photo Obama For America

HYDE PARK — Chicagoans already mourning the end of President Barack Obama's time in office can tour several Chicago locations crucial to his rise to the White House.

The bus tour, organized by Forgotten Chicago, will take place Dec. 4. Tickets are $65, including lunch at Valois Cafeteria, where the two-term president likes to eat when he's in town. The menu lists his six favorite dishes, including breakfast steak and eggs.

But the 5½-hour tour won't concentrate just on Hyde Park, where Barack and Michelle Obama lived and worked before he became the first African American president in 2008.

Forgotten Chicago, which bills itself as the "champions of the overlooked" parts of Chicago's history, conducted the tour once before, in 2013, to celebrate Obama's fifth year in office.

"While plenty of folks know that [Obama] is from the Windy City, there are many who aren't familiar with the sites which played a crucial role in Obama's life prior to his first election to the White House," said Dan Pogorzelski of Forgotten Chicago. "We thought repeating this tour would be a cool way for us to say goodbye to our fellow Chicagoans as they leave 1600 Pennsylvania Ave."

The tour will also travel to Altgeld Gardens, where the future president worked to help residents push Chicago Housing Authority to remove asbestos from the vast housing project, and Pullman, where Obama worked as a community organizer.

During the tour, Cheryl Johnson, the director of People for Community Recovery, will discuss the time Obama spent at her home with her mother, Hazel Johnson, "to discuss environmental issues, jobs, poverty and housing in Altgeld Gardens," organizers said.

Led by Pullman-area native Tom Shepherd, tour participants must check in at 10 a.m. at the Chicago Chicago Cultural Center, 77 E. Randolph St.

Tickets are available online.

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